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Secondhand Smoke by Patty Friedmann
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Secondhand Smoke (2002)

by Patty Friedmann

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Not a bad story. The characters are not at all likeable (they become a bit more at the end) but I still enjoyed reading about this family. There is some humor mixed into this drama which keeps the story moving. Each chapter is told by a different member of this family and I like watching stories unfold in this manner. This is definitely the most dysfunctional family I have read about in a long time. The characters and their issues are at times funny, at times sad, and at times downright maddening. This is a novel about survival an redemption. There are some interesting questions at the end that would make this a really great discussion book for book clubs. ( )
  bnbookgirl | Aug 27, 2015 |
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Epigraph
You are, all of you in this community, brothers. But when god fashioned you, he added gold in the composition of those of you who are qualified to be Rulers (which is why their prestige is greatest); he put silver in the Auxiliaries, and iron and bronze in the farmers and other workers. Now since you are all of the same stock, though your children wil lcommonly resemble their poarents, occasionally a silver child will be born of golden parents, or a golden child of silber parents, and so on. -Plato, The Republic
Dedication
For Rabbi Thomas J. Friedmann, also known as my little brother Tommy and In Memoriam Andrew Christopher McInvale, Ph.D 1974-2002 Thank you, Allsion McCabe, for giving this book a second life.
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I'm going to hose down that Angela.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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She's nasty. She's prejudiced. She thinks nothing of turning a hose on her neighbor. She's finally killed her husband (or at least that's what her kids believe), and now Jerusha Bailey, having alienated just about everyone except her beloved Chihuahua, has the house all to herself. That is, until she accidentally blows it up. She may be the most obnoxious woman in all of New Orleans. But by the end of this remarkable novel, featuring a wise-beyond-his-years ten-year-old boy, a trip to Arlington National Cemetery witha MacDonald's bag full of ashes, and "one of the most gruesome holiday dinners ever put on paper," readers will also find Jerusha Bailey infuriatingly lovable-a hilarious antiheroine who "takes life's hardest punches and survives." )Larry Baker, author of The Flamingo Rising)
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Dark comedy about a Southern US working-class family.

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