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Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani

Big Stone Gap (edition 2003)

by Adriana Trigiani

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2,018683,321 (3.64)1 / 30
Title:Big Stone Gap
Authors:Adriana Trigiani
Info:Fawcett (2003), Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library

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Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani

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English (67)  Vietnamese (1)  All languages (68)
Showing 1-5 of 67 (next | show all)
A most unlikely-named main character, Ave Maria, anchors this novel of finally growing up. It is set in a small town in the Blue Ridge, which provides a colorful and, for the most part, lovable, group of characters who become Ave Maria's family after the death of her mother. As her 36th year unfolds, she discovers secrets of her mother, her father, and, finally, of her own, that change her life. I found this book delightful, fun to read, and meaty enough to be a little more than just casual reading. ( )
  TerriBooks | Jan 27, 2016 |
A quick, easy read. A feel-good story. ( )
  Marion_B | Jan 19, 2016 |
I was searching for a book set in Virginia for a reading challenge and came across Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani, set in the late 1970’s. The main character, Ave Maria Mulligan is a 35 year old self-proclaimed spinster and the local pharmacist in Big Stone Gap, a small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Ave Maria gets called over to the local lawyer’s office where she receives a letter from her recently deceased Italian mother. Her mother tells her the secret of how she came to America and who her real father is. Even though Ave Maria fills her days working in the pharmacy, volunteering with the ambulance squad and directing a local outdoor play, this letter leaves her with some unsettling questions that could change her life. There are plenty of outrageous characters and the locals of Big Stone Gap will leave you smiling in every chapter. I couldn’t stop laughing during the big production number the local residents put on for a campaign visit from John Warner and his wife, Elizabeth Taylor.

There was a touch more romance in this novel than I usually enjoy but overall it was a fun, fast read that kept me interested. This is the first book in the four volume Big Stone Gap series.
( )
  Olivermagnus | Jan 17, 2016 |
This book was much better than I expected. It's 1978, Ave Maria Mulligan is about to turn 36, and it's been a tumultuous year for her in her hometown of Big Stone Gap, Virginia. Her beloved mother has died, and she learns her mother's secret a few months later. This throws her life into upheaval, and suddenly this long-time spinster is thinking of marriage and moving.

The book is full of small-town characters and quirky happenings, including one event based on a real-life incident in the real Big Stone Gap, author Adriana Trigiani's hometown in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia - a campaign stop visit by actress Elizabeth Taylor and her then-candidate husband John Warner.

This book isn't especially deep, but it's funny and enjoyable to read. Some of the descriptions in it are quite lovely.

My paperback copy also included part of chapter 1 from the sequel to Big Stone Gap, entitled Big Cherry Holler. From what I read, I definitely want to read that and the rest of the books in the series. And maybe even see the movie version of this book, which is supposed to come out in October 2015.

© Amanda Pape - 2015

[I own a copy of this book. A longer version of this review appears on Bookin' It.] ( )
  riofriotex | Dec 8, 2015 |
We chose this book for our October's book club meeting. It was a cute story. This is the first time I've read anything by this author and enjoyed it!

For the rest of the review, visit my blog at: http://angelofmine1974.livejournal.com/96978.html ( )
  booklover3258 | Oct 11, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 67 (next | show all)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0345438329, Paperback)

In the town of Big Stone Gap, Virginia, not much happens. The highlight of 35-year-old Ave Maria Mulligan's week comes on Friday, with the arrival of the Bookmobile, the sight of which sends her into raptures. Her favorite book concerns the ancient Chinese art of reading faces. Through her face-readings, we come to understand the hostilities simmering within her family: her father whose small eyes are the clear "sign of a deceptive nature." Her aunt who "has a small head and thin lips. (That's a terrible combination.)" Adriana Trigiani's first novel concerns the family scandals that befall Ave Maria in this seemingly uneventful town. Greed, lust, envy--all the ancient emotional elements--manifest themselves even in this hamlet of "ordinary folk." Fans of Fannie Flagg or Rebecca Wells will enjoy this down-home tale, full of small, everyday details and colloquial revelations. The writing is often awkward, but so too are the characters who inhabit this place: the Bookmobile lady who thinks of herself as the sexiest woman alive; the amateur actors in the local Outdoor Drama who bristle with ambition when they hear that Elizabeth Taylor is coming to visit. In Big Stone Gap, her visit is so anticipated, it's like she's an angel sent from heaven. --Ellen Williams

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:05 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The warm and very funny story of a small town is told by Ave Maria Mulligan, a 35-year-old self-proclaimed spinster, whose comfortable routine is about to be disrupted forever. "Funny, charming, and original".--Fannie Flagg.

(summary from another edition)

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Adriana Trigiani is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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