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Welcome to Higby

3.3  ·  Rating Details ·  337 Ratings  ·  51 Reviews
Following the national success of Ella Minnow Pea, this second novel from Mark Dunn brings the same charm and love of good language to a small town in the South. A Robert Altmanesque comedy, Welcome to Higby follows the hilarious goings-on in a small town in northern Mississippi over Labor Day weekend. From mousy Carmen Valentine, whose guardian angel, Arnetta, gives her p ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published September 1st 2003 by Touchstone (first published 2002)
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Richard Derus
Nov 09, 2012 Richard Derus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-loved books from my past

Rating: 3.8* of five

The Publisher Says: Touchstone's trade paper edition has this description, which seems to me to give a better flavor of the book than MacAdam/Cage's short line:
Following the national success of Ella Minnow Pea, this second novel from Mark Dunn brings the same charm and love of good language to a small town in the South. A Robert Altmanesque comedy, Welcome to Higby follows the hilarious goings-on in a small town in northern Mississippi over Labor
Carolyn Barry
Nov 01, 2009 Carolyn Barry rated it liked it
Southern novel: 25 eccentric characters. Many crises of faith, love, health, and finances. Very well written, but the format gets old. WE ARE NOT ALL CRAZY DOWN HERE!
Sep 05, 2012 Angie rated it liked it
I can't decide if I kinda loved this book or kinda hated it LOL. It wasn't nearly as clever or captivating as Ella Minnow Pea, but it was a mostly enjoyable read. It was quirky with a great cast of characters. The short chapters made for quick, interesting reading. I couldn't ever quite put my finger on what bugged me about the book. I think it had something to do with the fluid nature of relationships and the extremely quick "I love yous". Also in the beginning of the book there was some little ...more
Nov 10, 2010 Kelly rated it it was amazing
Loved, loved, loved it. Had to laugh out loud at several points. Quirky characters.
Story of a small town over a Labor day weekend. You just never know from one moment to the next.
If you like Fannie Flagg, you will like it.
Jessica Harmon
Oct 07, 2011 Jessica Harmon rated it liked it
Fast and easy read. A good novel to follow a serious or "heavy" read. The novel read a little too much like a romance novel for my liking as each character is obsessed with their sexual relationships. I became wary around page 200 and was honestly a little relieved when it was over.
Aug 21, 2011 Marnie rated it did not like it
I can't even express how disappointed I am in this book. I LOVED his first book, Ella Minnow Pea. I thought it was so clever and unique. And this, Welcome to Higby, is just terrible. There is nothing interesting about Higby. If you were to go there, you'd drive right through.

The descriptions of this book talk about it being hysterical. I haven't even smiled or chuckled once while reading. I'll read something and think, "I think I'm supposed to think this is one of those hysterical things" but t
Laura Radniecki
Dec 07, 2014 Laura Radniecki rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
I picked this book up at my local library's book sale because of the pretty cover.

The short chapters were a nice change of pace for me from the other books I've been reading.

At first, I was overwhelmed by all of the different characters, but as I kept reading and they were reintroduced, I started to keep them all straight. I loved how the characters' lives all intertwined together in different ways.

I wasn't a huge fan of the way the author depicted their southern style of talking. All the comin
Apr 24, 2011 Diane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 15, 2012 Judi rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2002
"Because these last few hours had changed him forever. In the company of a fellow traveler Stewie had found God--- a different God--- one he had never known existed. A God removed from clumsy human projections and self-serving interpretations. A God unfathomable beyond the one simple truth acknowledged by all the religions of the world: God equals love. A generous love. A love without specifications."

I did not love this like I did ELLA MINNOW PEA -- but it is still very good. My review opens wit
Jun 06, 2012 Jennifer rated it liked it
Shelves: adult-fiction
This book occurs over the course of a holiday weekend in Higby. I liked the small town feel and the way that each character was interwoven into the story of other characters (as happens frequently in a small town). I enjoyed the characters but the plot is 'just a bunch of stuff that happened.'

It's an "english class" book with lots of discussion topics to be brought up in class...and I hate those. Maybe I'm softening to them though, because I did like the way the story began at the water tower a
Feb 11, 2009 Sarah rated it liked it
Shelves: novel
I've read 2 other books by Mark Dunn - "Ella Minnow Pea" and "Zounds!". I absolutely loved "ELMNOP" and was entertained by "Z!". This book wasn't as good. I enjoyed it more at the beginning but got a bit bored and anxious to finish by the end. Dunn takes a small Mississippi town and gives the reader a 3 day experience in the town by following about 20 characters (It has a Garrison Keller feel: describing a small town of odd people). It just didn't grab me like I was hoping despite some really fu ...more
Aug 03, 2008 Kelly rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, humor, religion
Call me a snob for saying this, but I think a person has to be an intelligent reader to get this book and his book Ibid. Ella Minnow Pea is accessible by all. I also think that if a person does not have a general knowledge of the Bible, the humor in this book will not be appreciated. The quotations from the Bible match the story and all that is going on. The humor is outrageous and quirky, but the message is quite serious. Dunn is obviously a modern day satirist. He used dialog well with the cha ...more
Jun 11, 2011 Abby rated it it was amazing
Small southern town with quircky charchters. I love Mark Dunn's ability to tell a story. This time each chapter is told from a different person had an encounter from the pervious person. Its like passing a dime and watching the different stories. Very fun format to read. Ella Minow Pea was one of my favorite novels. Novels more with the format style like welcome to Higby, although minus the humor, call to mind Winesburg Ohio and As I Lay Dying.
Sep 04, 2008 Hannah rated it it was ok
I would recommend another work by Dunn, Ella Minnow Pea, but not this novel. The characters that inhabit the story were not people I cared to get to know, and did not improve upon closer acquaintance. They were not even people I could sympathize with in their flaws. In the book's defense, I was very young when I read it the first time, and I might feel differently about the characters now.
Nov 14, 2007 Joanna rated it liked it
Shelves: 2009-read
While I didn't love this the way I loved Ella Minnow Pea, I found it highly enjoyable. The wacky cast and conversational tone felt a little like Christopher Moore, but with less sarcasm and no demons or other fantasy beings. The book is really a bunch of short chapters each telling a small story about one of the residents of Higby, Mississippi over one Labor Day weekend. Despite the narrow time frame and location, the book was compelling and the characters came to life.
Aug 07, 2009 Marvin rated it it was ok
Shelves: religion
One of the genre of books (like the Tall Pine Polka book I read a while back) set in a small town w/o much plot, but mostly designed just to introduce you to a wide range of eccentric small-town folk. This was mildly entertaining, with some superficial reflections on religion, but not very substantive.
Apr 05, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was ok
I was excited to read this book after loving Ella Minow Pea, but this was a huge disappointment. The begining was good but as it wore on it just stagnated and was trully slow and boring. I really didn't care how the characters lives turned out. This story is basically about 15+ characters and their boring lives in a boring town.
Cindy Grossi
Jan 02, 2015 Cindy Grossi rated it liked it
3.5 --I was distracted by the short chapters with Bible verse lead-ins. When I started skipping reading the verses and concentrated on the story, I really grew to like the characters and get into their stories and intertwining lives. Quirky bunch of southern small town folks woven into a warm blanket of words.
Jul 28, 2008 Kara rated it did not like it
Shelves: not-finished
If you liked "Ella Minnow Pea" don't read this one, it will taint your good feelings for this author. After about 100 pages of weirdness, things just continued going downhill with the introduction of a bunch of sex. Don't bother with this one, I'm definitely finished with it. I'm just glad we didn't pick it for book club =).
M Melick
Mar 14, 2016 M Melick rated it it was amazing
Small southern town with a population of nutty, special, troubled, loving neighbors. Mishap after mishap will keep you laughing. I loved the writing and didn't even mind the extreme number of characters - it was easy to catch on to who they were and how they interacted. Fun read.
Mar 17, 2008 Jadine rated it really liked it
These kooky characters with their kooky names make Higby a town I want to visit. The book only covers three days, but in that short time I feel in love with the townsfolk. A bit Fannie Flagg and Garrison Keillor; if you like small town tales, you'll probably like this.
May 12, 2016 Megan rated it did not like it
I loved Ella Minnow Pea. I found this to be ridiculous. . not in a fun, quirky way but in a boring, insipid way. Bummer.
Feb 05, 2011 Wendy rated it really liked it
Hilarious and silly, but with plenty of the real human condition for good measure. Quick fun read.
Mar 05, 2013 Crystal rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2013
Reminiscent of Winesburg, Ohio, and Olive Kitteridge.
May 25, 2010 Emily rated it liked it
Hmmm, kind of disappointing. Oh well.
Sep 01, 2011 Kelly added it
Shelves: stopped-reading
Just not interesting enough. It started with promise but then sexual situations arose and the story's not worth it.
Aug 13, 2010 Jenny rated it liked it
13 Aug 2010
Jun 13, 2014 Cheryl rated it liked it
not as good as Ella Minnow Pea but lovely nonetheless
Nov 13, 2007 Cynthia rated it really liked it
Great characters, funny southern novel. Loved it almost as much as A Short History of a Small Place by T.R. Pearson.
Sep 07, 2013 Deloris rated it really liked it
If you enjoy a good farce this is a fun book to read!
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Mark Dunn is the author of several books and more than thirty full-length plays, a dozen of which have been published in acting edition.

Mark has received over 200 productions of his work for the stage throughout the world, with translations of his plays into French, Italian, Dutch and Hungarian. His play North Fork (later retitled Cabin Fever: A Texas Tragicomedy when it was picked up for publica
More about Mark Dunn...

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