Original jacket copy, Little, Brown edition
- A Book Sense Notable Book
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"Books for the Teen Age 2007" NY Public Library
Nominated 2007 SIBA "Book of the Year"
bestselling author of Crazy in Alabama, an uproarious and moving novel
about family, best friends, first love, and surviving the scariest
years of your life.
When Daniel Musgrove's troubled family moves to Mississippi just before
his junior year, he is appalled. On top of the usual teenage
humiliations, he now has to learn to say "y'all" and "Co-Cola" or risk
being ostracized as a Yankee. But Daniel's loneliness fades when he
meets fellow outsider Tim Cousins. You only need one best friend, Daniel
figures, to make it through high school alive.
Daniel and Tim immediately become inseparable, sharing a fascination
with ridicule, The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour, and Arnita Beecham, the
most bewitching girl at Minor High. The boys learn algebra from a
teacher whose mind may be slipping off the tracks. They join the cast
of a bouncy evangelical musical called Christ! (think Mary Magdalene
singing "I'm Not That Kind of Girl"). They take their dates to the prom
in matching Sky Blue tuxedos and kiss them in Tim's father's Buick to
"Nights in White Satin."
But then things start to go terribly wrong. The friends' feud with Red
Martin, star linebacker and school bully, gets out of hand. They commit
a small crime that grows larger and larger, and threatens to engulf the
whole town. Arnita, the first black prom queen in the history of the
school, is injured and wakes up a different person. And Daniel and Tim
and their families are swept up in a shocking chain
Mark Childress is one of our finest chroniclers of Southern families
and small-town life, taking up the rich tradition of Harper Lee, Pat
Conroy, and Flannery O'Connor, and adding his own inimitable blend of
dark humor and tenderness. One Mississippi is his most ambitious and
accomplished novel yet.