Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Queen of Sleepy Eye by Patti Hill

The Queen of Sleepy Eye begins with Amy and her mother searching for her mom's 1958 Pontiac Bonneville Sports Coupe. Amy's mom had sold the car many years before. In the course of trying to find the car Amy's mother reveals that she had stolen the car from Amy's father. The problem though is that her mother also reveals that Amy's father is not dead like Amy has been told all of her life. But he is alive and well still living in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota. Her mother is bent on returning the car to Amy's father~the man her mother never married.

Switch to the past. Amy and her mother are on their way to take Amy to California to college. Their car breaks down in Cordial Colorado. Amy finds herself working and living in a mortuary. Throughout the summer in Cordial Amy learns a few life lessons. She finds a friend in H one of the local boys. She befriends a group of hippies. Amy is a "good girl" and works hard at maintaining that image. During the summer so many of her values and morals are challenged. Through the death of her friend H and a mistake that she makes, her faith in God is rocked. By the end of summer much spiritual growth has occurred. Her mother is determined to get her to California to college. She sells the Bonneville for money to make the trip.

Switch back to the present. Amy and her mother arrive in Sleepy Eye with the Bonneville. Turns out the police have been watching for that car for years. They are stopped on the way into town. Amy is able to meet her real father and they are able to return the car to it's rightful owner.

The Queen of Sleepy Eye was at times entertaining and then at times frustrating. Amy's "holier than thou" attitude was frustrating when we as the reader could see her flirting with sexual situations. The mother/daughter relationship was very disfunctional. The characters were engaging though and there were a couple humorous parts. By the time the story ended I was wanting more information between what happened at the end of the summer and the present.

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