|The delightful "New York Times"-bestselling author returns with a hilarious novel about one woman''s quest to redo an old house . . . and her life.|
|From the Publisher:
The delightful New York Times bestselling author returns with a hilarious novel about one woman's quest to redo an old house . . . and her life.
After her boss in a high-powered Washington public relations firm is caught in a political scandal, fledgling lobbyist Dempsey Jo Killebrew is left almost broke, unemployed, and homeless. Out of options, she reluctantly accepts her father's offer to help refurbish Birdsong, the old family place he recently inherited in Guthrie, Georgia. All it will take, he tells her, is a little paint and some TLC to turn the fading Victorian mansion into a real-estate cash cow.
But, oh, is Dempsey in for a surprise when she arrives in Guthrie. "Bird Droppings" would more aptly describe the moldering Pepto Bismolpink dump with duct-taped windows and a driveway full of junk. There's also a murderously grumpy old lady, one of Dempsey's distant relations, who has claimed squatter's rights and isn't moving out. Ever.
Furthermore, everyone in Guthrie seems to know Dempsey's business, from a smooth-talking real-estate agent to a cute lawyer who owns the local newspaper. It wouldn't be so bad if it weren't for the pesky FBI agents who show up on Dempsey's doorstep, hoping to pry information about her ex-boss from her.
All Dempsey can do is roll up her sleeves and get to work. And before long, what started as a job of necessity somehow becomes a labor of love and, ultimately, a journey that takes her to a place she never expected—back home again.
Jo Killebrew is a D.C. lobbyist who is left without a job when her boss is ensnared in a political fiasco. In full retreat mode, she flees to a dilapidated family mansion down South, where she tries to rebuild her life along with the crumbling walls of the once-palatial home.
While she is best known for writing light-hearted novels filled with quirky characters from the Deep South, Mary Kay Andrews has had a more varied writing career than many realize. Born Kathy Hogan Trocheck in St. Petersburg, Florida, she was part of a large, Catholic family. She attended Pinellas County public schools and, as she has quipped to interviewers, she once completed a charm-school course run by the Maas Brothers department-store chain. In 1976 she earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and soon embarked on a career with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Among the major stories she covered was the murder trial of Savannah native Jim Williams. (The case later provided the inspiration for John Berendt's book MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL.) With two small children to care for, in the early 1990s she made the move into fiction, reasoning that it would allow her to work from home and afford her greater flexibility. She first wrote several mysteries under her given name, most featuring Atlanta-cop-turned-housecleaner Callahan Garrity, and when she decided to switch genres after a decade, she created her pseudonym by combining the names of her children, Andrew and Mary Kathleen. Andrews is an avid practitioner of a hobby she calls "junking," which involves combing flea markets and thrift stores for possible treasures, and SAVANNAH BLUES (2001), the first book written under her new moniker, featured Weezy Foley, an irrepressible "junker." Her subsequent books, many of which have landed on the bestseller list, have included equally colorful protagonists. "Since I've never lived anywhere outside the South, I don't know what normal looks like," Andrews has joked. "[Here] we don't just accept eccentricities, we celebrate them."
"This authentic tale of cleaning up life's messes and self-discovery is bright, engaging and thoughtful, enlivened by Andrews's quirky characters and lovely backwoods setting."