Chronicles of a Radical Hag (with Recipes)

Landvik, Lorna. Univ. of Minnesota. Mar. 2019. 320p. ISBN 9781517905996. $25.95. F
OrangeReviewStarHaze Evans has been a columnist for the Granite Creek Gazette, a small-town newspaper in Minnesota, for more than 50 years. Her stories are mostly folksy and charming, but over the years, she's stepped on a few toes. Her feminist opinions prompted one disgruntled reader to label her column "The Chronicles of a Radical Hag." Nonplussed, Haze begins to add comforting recipes to her writing to help soothe her critics. When Haze suffers a stroke, Susan, the paper's editor, has the brilliant idea of reprinting Haze's older columns, while hoping she will make a full recovery. Susan's teenage son, Sam, is tasked with reading Haze's columns, choosing the ones the paper will run. Initially, he's not thrilled with his assignment, but then her stories begin to make a profound impression, and drawing inspiration from them, Sam acquires a deep appreciation for journalism. Haze touches many lives, but her influence on Sam, the voice of the future, ensures her legacy.
VERDICT Landvik (Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons) has written a poignant but humorous, warm, and touching homage to writers while confirming the power and the importance of words.
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