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Patty Jane's House of Curl by Lorna Landvik
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Patty Jane's House of Curl (edition 1999)

by Lorna Landvik

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7972111,505 (3.75)23
Member:debnance
Title:Patty Jane's House of Curl
Authors:Lorna Landvik
Info:Ivy Books (1999), Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
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Patty Jane's House of Curl by Lorna Landvik

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English (20)  German (1)  All languages (21)
Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
It’s always fun to read books that are set in places I am familiar with but this book, set in Minneapolis, was a real treat. I went to Minneapolis in June 2013 for a work conference but thanks to some great friends, I got to see many of the sights. So, I could picture the Minnehaha Falls and the statue of Hiawatha and Nokomis and the Foshay Tower as they came up in this book.
Patty Jane and her sister Harriet were the daughters of two alcoholics. But, as Patty Jane tells her daughter Nora “Just because my life began in the bargain basement doesn’t mean I can’t take the escalator to fine crystal”. In fact, Patty Jane’s life, as well as her sister’s, ride the escalator down to the basement a few times but always manage to find the up staircase.
Patty Jane was beautiful and Harriet was musically talented. Patty Jane married the extremely handsome Thor at the age of 21 and Nora was conceived right away. However, before Nora was born Thor disappeared causing Patty Jane to slide into depression. The only reason she ate was to keep her milk flowing for Nora. Thor’s mother, Ione, Harriet and Harriet’s fiancé, Avel, took care of the expenses and cooking and laundry and other details. Avel was the son of the founders of the Ames Grain Co. and was incredibly rich. He saw Harriet walking one day and immediately fell in love with her. Even the fact that he was short and Harriet was tall didn’t stop their love. Avel adored Harriet and paid for her to take music lessons in voice, harp and trumpet. Harriet would play the harp for Patty Jane while she nursed Nora.
The story of how Patty Jane, Harriet, Ione and Nora came to be living together and working in the House of Curl is a large part of the book and I don’t want to spoil it. The story is alternately mystifying, happy, sad and empowering. ( )
  gypsysmom | Sep 7, 2013 |
This one's a bit soap-opera-ish in plot, but it's written so well I forgive that. Landvik has a wonderful manner of creating home-y, lovable characters. ( )
  periwinklejane | Mar 29, 2013 |
My second Lorna Landvik, and one that I easily demolished in a morning. A few near-tear moments near the end, this is a story of two sisters, and there lives and loves in the 50s and 60s (and a little later) in Mid-America
  nordie | Jul 6, 2011 |
The writing is smart and the dialogue is snappy and believable. I found the hardships in the character's lives borderline contrived, but not so much that I couldn't enjoy the story. Perhaps witnessing so many tragic coincidences happening to otherwise good people pushed me too much out of the novel's fictional world.

The House of Curl salon is where the Dobbin sisters forge their strongest bond, and their relationship is the emotional hinge of Patty Jane's House of Curl. I was also touched by the persistent theme of finding eternal meaning in the daily interactions of those you love. ( )
  Daniel.Estes | Oct 17, 2010 |
Beauty shop and the women who go there. ( )
  jepeters333 | Aug 22, 2010 |
Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0804114609, Mass Market Paperback)

Patty Jane Dobbin should have known better than to marry a man as gorgeous as Thor Rolvaag, but she was too smitten to think twice. Yet nine months into their marriage, with a baby on the way, Thor is gone. It's a good thing Patty Jane has her irrepressible sister, Harriet, to rely on. For it's been said that a fine haircut can cure any number of ills, and before long the Minnesota sisters have opened a neighborhood beauty parlor complete with live harp music and an endless supply of delicious Norwegian baked goods. It's a wonderful, warmhearted place where you can count on good friends, lots of laughter, tears, and comfort when you need it--and the unmistakable scent of somebody getting a permanent wave. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:36:26 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

A comedy on two sisters running a beauty parlor in Minneapolis which they turn into a women's support center. One sister is Patty Jane, whose husband skipped town just before she gave birth, the other is Harriet, whose rich boyfriend was killed in a plane crash before they could marry. A first novel.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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