Mindy Friddle Makes a Splash

Author Mindy Friddle’s new book, The Garden Angel, is just out in trade paperback from Picador. This book is being highly praised and is already a B&N Discover Great New Writers selection, a SEBA (Southeastern Bookseller’s Associations) bestseller, and a Pulpwood Queens Book Club Selection.

About Mindy’s book: In Sans Souci, South Carolina, talk is cheap, real estate even more so. No one knows this better than Cutter Johanson, a gruff tomboy who waits tables, writes obits, and makes every effort, however comical and in the face of her mercenary relatives, to avert the sale of the dilapidated ancestral home. And despite her plucky resolve, all appears to be lost—until she strikes up an unlikely friendship with Elizabeth, a shy and fragile academic who puts both their fates on the mend.

Some of the other praise Mindy has been getting:

“Mindy Friddle has a great comic touch, and her novel is a touching, heartfelt debut.”
-Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls

“Friddle has a way with the comic yet apt image…funny, down-to-earth and steeped in a sense of place.”
-The Washington Post

“The glory of a past that may never be reclaimed is the theme of this unique and satisfying novel …At times wonderfully comic and sad enough to provoke tears, The Garden Angel is an addictive read, and an enthralling story filled with both loss and hope.” — The Barnes & Noble Review from Discover Great New Writers

“The southern novel is still alive and kicking, thank heavens, and Friddle gives the genre its due…with comic grace. In the tradition of Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, Friddle’s novel celebrates the power of women’s friendship. The story is soulful and satisfying, as southern as a slice of watermelon on a hot summer’s day.”
-The Charlotte Observer

“A beguiling debut novel. Friddle…handles the juxtaposition of two highly eccentric cultures-small-town Southern society and small-college English department-with a light, quirky touch that keeps the story moving along and steadily entertaining.”
-The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“A comic delight….Winning characters and piquant wit, with an underpinning of graciousness: a standout.”
-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“This debut novel is atmospheric in the way of Southern fiction, but it’s also brand new. With casual skill, Friddle makes the case that who we like in life may be as critical as who we love.”
-Publishers Weekly

“[The] writing is as beautiful as a stained glass window….Like Flannery O’Connor and Eudora Welty, Friddle reveres the majesty of Southern homes and Southern women, zany or not.”
-The News & Record (Greensboro)

“Friddle has a great flair for comic relief, and in a novel filled with tragedy…there is also much laughter.”
-Oxford Town (Oxford, Mississippi)

“Bursting with local color and Southern warmth, the story…reflects a need to remember our history in the modern south.”
-Ya’ll magazine

“A whimsical tale about the transformative power of an unlikely friendship. Friddle’s lyrical novel is beautifully written in language both earthy and poetic. It is also extremely funny.”
-The Journal-Standard (Illinois)

“The hidden charm of this book is the eccentric minor players that move effectively throughout the story….THE GARDEN ANGEL continues in the tradition of other great Southern novelists with wit, charm, and the abundance of humanity.”
-Savannah Morning News

“Add Mindy Friddle to the list of contemporary Southern writers able to bring a town to life with her words…a confident debut from a Southern writer to watch.”
-Playback St. Louis

“Mindy Friddle’s first novel is the literary equivalent of Grace Kelly—smart and stylish, elegant and timeless, destined to become a classic.”
-Michael Lee West, author of Crazy Ladies

“Cutter Johanson is a heroine Eudora Welty would be proud to claim and one few readers will forget. The Garden Angel is a book I did not want to end.”
-Ron Rash, author of Saints at the River

“THE GARDEN ANGEL takes on the shifting alliances defined by family, love, and friendship with quirky grace and raucous wit. Mindy Friddle’s details are shocking and flawless. I’m thankful for her reminder that our frail souls can be ultimately triumphant.”
-Julianna Baggott, author of Girl Talk, The Miss America Family, and The Madam

“THE GARDEN ANGEL is smart, soulful, sensual, and hysterically funny. Mindy Friddle’s writing is as quirky and original as the South itself.”
-Valerie Ann Leff, author of Better Homes & Husbands

“Agoraphobes and adulterers, lovers of history and advocates for the future, the mentally ill and the putatively sane all line up to do battle in THE GARDEN ANGEL, a warm-hearted, funny novel about the vagaries of small-town life and the encroachments of the big, bad world.”
-Debra Spark, author of Coconuts for the Saint and The Ghost of Bridgetown and editor of Twenty Under Thirty: Best Stories by America’s New Young Writers

Here’s another one you WON’T want to miss. Mindy is a former newspaper reporter. She received the 2003 South Carolina Fiction Prize and a Fellowship in Fiction from the South Carolina Academy of Authors.

You can visit her Web site at www.mindyfriddle.com. And OF COURSE, she blogs. All the Girlfriends on the GCC blog. You can visit hers at http://www.publishersmarketplace.com/members/friddmi/.


About Natalie R. Collins

Natalie has more than 30 years writing, editing, proofreading and design experience. She has written 20 books (and counting), has worked for the Sundance Film Festival, and as an investigative journalist, editor, and proofreader. She embraces her gypsy-heart and is following her new free-thinking journey through life. Follow her as she starts over and learns a bunch of life's lessons--some the hard way.
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