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The Goddess of Fried Okra

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3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  719 ratings  ·  132 reviews
Grief. Hope. Love. Sword fights. And the crisp glory of fried okra. Ex-cocktail waitress and "convenience story professional" Eudora "Pea" O'Brien is filled with grief and regret, low on cash and all alone. Headed down the hot, dusty back roads of central Texas, Pea is convinced she'll find a sign leading her to the reincarnated soul of the sister who raised her. A sign th ...more
Kindle Edition
Published March 17th 2010 by Bell Bridge Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,313)
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Jean
I just downloaded this to my Kindle for free and was surprised how quickly I was into it. Since I live in and love Texas that was a big plus for this book. Then throw in adjectives like eccentric, vulnerable, and heroic well that was enough to get me started. The first 2 chapters enough to keep me going. I let you know what I think when I am finished.
Helen
I liked that the book was set in central Texas, my stomping ground. But I was stopped by: “Pea is convinced she’ll find a sign leading her to the reincarnated soul of the sister…” I put the book down and walked away. Some of you may remember that my sister died this summer. I wasn’t ready to read this book.

The next day, I picked it back up and began to read.

There were a few times I cried and had to stop reading, but mostly I laughed and smiled and kept turning pages. Pea isn’t really trying to f
...more
Jennifer
Early Reviewer book. I can't even give it one star. A woman goes in search of her sister's reincarnation based on a recommendation from a psychic. Along the way she rescues; a kitten, a pregnant teen from an abusive boyfriend, picks up a con man who is hitchhiking, meets a woman who teaches her the use of the broadsword (?!), learns to cook in an old fashioned, small town diner, and finds peace. You should know that the finding peace and the total wrap up of all the various threads occurs in the ...more
drey
In this heartwarming tale of hope, Eudora "Pea" O'Brien is buried under her grief and guilt at her sister's death, and takes off on a road trip to find the reincarnation of her sister. She doesn't go very far when she rescues a young pregnant teenager from an abusive boyfriend, finds herself a kitten, and runs over a con artist... And then her car dies. Guess life has a way of interrupting plans, huh?

Jean Brashear's The Goddess of Fried Okra is one of those books that pulls you in and doesn't le
...more
Betty
"While the reader is traveling with this delightful group of misfits, the days will seem brighter...."

The Goddess of Fried Okra
Jean Brashear

Reviewed by Betty Cox
May 31, 2010


Eudora "Sweet pea" O'Brien was eight and her sister sixteen, when their mother died. Sister fought to keep custody of "Pea" and never let the younger child down. Whenever their mother had a problem, the obvious answer was to pack up the old car and skedaddle outta where ever they were to someplace they had never been.

It was P
...more
Angela Taylor
definetly a book for and about women. women who are young and old, women who are strong or are learning to be strong. women helping and learning from each other. the main character, eudora, embodies all these ideas. she is a care giver, teacher, student, and learning to love herself and how to live, really live. each chapter begins with a short factual paragraph about a strong women. i enjoyed this book, i was captivated by the first 2 chapters.
Tammy
I really didn't know if I would like this book. But I have to say I really enjoyed it! Eudora is on a quest to find her reincarnated sister. Along the way, she picks up a young pregnant woman and a con man. They end up stranded in a small Texas town. Great story about losing a loved one, dealing with grief and moving on.
Tanya
Pea O'Brien starts her quest to find her sister and finds herself. She is a wacky and whimsical portrait of a woman who wants what most women want. To feel powerful amid powerlessness, to care for, and to be cared for. She has quite an adventure along the way.
Susan Espourteille
This is a delightful read. It touched me in unexpected ways, and helped me reflect on the strong women in my life, both alive and departed. This book is about the power of love, the crushing pain of abandonment both real and perceived, and the struggle to find a place in this big world. I don't want to talk much about the storyline, though it's cleverly constructed and compelling; the road trip aspect draws the reader right along on Eudora's journey, wondering right along with her where the next ...more
Cassy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ruth
Feb 15, 2012 Ruth rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
I wanted to like this book more than I did. I thought there were going to be more fantasy elements in the story - I mean, there is a broadsword on the cover - but what it ended up being is a solid story of southern-fried chick-lit, with a little bit of Conan sword swinging for flavor.

The main character, Eudora, goes on a road trip for the reincarnation of her dead sister and ends up picking up a menageries of cast offs that she develops relationships with. I found the supporting characters more
...more
Laura Cushing
Picked this up when it was offered free for on Kindle Fire, and I'm glad I did!

An engaging and quirky story - Pea (Eudora, by birth) is looking for her sister's reincarnation. Her road trip to find Sister's new life has her picking up strays - a cute kitten she names Isis, a pregnant teen named Alex, and a con-man named Valentine.

When her car breaks down in Jewel, Texas - Pea and her group find a town they could conceivably call home. But does Pea want to give up her search? Can Valentine go st
...more
Ken

This is one of those charming “road” novels, folks. Grieving over the loss of her big sister and believing that her sister will be reincarnated, Eudora Pea O’Brien decides to leave Texas and head to New Mexico where she believes her sister will be reborn.

One the way, Eudora picks up strays around every bend until her car is full and finally breaks down in the tiny town of Jewel after a night with Glory, the eccentric (and possibly repressed lesbian) owner of a gun shop on the outskirts of town.

T
...more
J. York
I still can't sort our my feelings about this book. I enjoyed reading it. I'm glad I read it. I'd recommend it to others. Yet I was slightly disappointed in it.

Maybe it's just that this book has so many things I liked, such interesting characters, such quirky themes, such colorful subject-matter, that it could have been a classic, and it wasn't that. It felt like the author went for a solid base hit, and achieved that unquestionably.

But this book could have been much more. I find myself wonderi
...more
Jennifer Osterman
I wanted to like this book - I mean, what has better promise for a story than a kitten and a broadsword? The premise is intriguing, but the characters are hard to know. The heroine comes across as puerile, naive, obsessed and directionless. She does eventually find direction, and she overcomes some of her helplessness, but by the time she does, it is too late. She is certain that her sister's spirit will be reborn, and she is on a search for her - convinced that she is either a kitten or the unb ...more
Gina (My Precious Blog)

The Goddess of Fried Okra
by Jean Brashear
My Rating -------> 3 out of 5 Stars * * *

"Sometimes you just have to take the leap and see where the road leads."

Summary: After the death of Eudora "Sweet Pea's" older sister, she is left feeling guilty, empty and lost. Her mother died when she was eight. She calls her father "Casper" for good reason. So, without any living family remaining in her life, longing for something more "Pea" sells everything, quits her job and decides to go searching for her
...more
Deb
Eudora "Pea" O'Brien is on the road, searching for the reincarnated soul of her sister. She's an ex-cocktail waitress and ex-night shift convenience store clerk. She's full of grief, broke, and has a heart larger than life. She decides to head towards New Mexico since her sister often talked about the Pueblo Indians in her beat up junker. At a gas station she rescues a pregnant teenage girl, Alex, from an abusive boyfriend, and shortly after that, runs into (literally) con man Valentine, who joi ...more
Maria
Read this last summer. I laughed and cried. I laughed as I cried. Orphaned at eight, raised by a sister not much older, who, in turn leaves her, Pea O'Brien sets off on a quest to find Sister's reincarnated soul. Driving across Texas to New Mexico (she's sure that's the sort of place Sister would come back to, in her new life), she adopts a stray kitten and stray people with an openness of heart that is central to her character.

The book is peppered with quotations from roadside markers. Her mam
...more
Donna
I wanted to like this book more than I did. It is set in Texas where I am from and has that strong female story that I like. But somehow, this book just didn't quite work for me. I never could fall in love with the main character, Pea. The author wants her to be poor white trash but really smart because she's always been a big reader, but she never seemed believable to me.

It had a sweet story with Pea looking for forgiveness from her sister who had died. She hits the road and ends up picking up
...more
Tracy Dobbs
This book was a free Kindle download. It's not my usual fantasy/sci-fi/paranormal type of book. The book is ostensibly about Pea(Eudora), a young woman on a road trip to find her (dead) sister. She picks up a few strays(a cat, a teen runaway, and a conman) along the way and ends up in a small Texas town when her car breaks down. The story then turns on the interactions between Pea, her "strays", and certain town-folk. In the end, the book is a story of grief and community and how family can be m ...more
Jessica
I'm really not into chick-lit and the down-home, folksy narration this uses should make me really cranky, but every time I started to put this down and walk away I'd think "just a few more pages" until ... a few hours later I found myself at the end. Despite the fact that this is something I think I shouldn't have enjoyed at all, I found myself laughing and crying as I watched Eudora, aka Pea, leave Austin on her quest to find her sister's reincarnated self somewhere in Taos and get sidetracked ...more
Liz Roberts
This book was recommended several years ago and I put off reading it because of the title. I was very surprised when I started to read it and could not put it down. Needless to say I enjoyed it immensely.
Samantha
I absolutely loved this little gem! It was a free download for my Kindle so I figured, "why not?" and I'm soooo glad I did!

Eudora (Pea) is lost after the death of her sister, and decides to up and leave town to chase down her sister's reincarnation. She picks up some strays along the way and the story unfolds as you follow their trials and tribulations on the road.

Some parts were slow, and sometimes you felt like Pea is a little nuts, but I think even she questions the same thing about herself
...more
Chet Forsman
It was a decent enough read, and I would call it a cut above many of the free Kindle books I downloaded back when I first purchased the device. If you're looking for a feel-good story with a Texas flair, this should be right up your alley. Just don't expect any surprises. By the time I was halfway through the book, the ending was already well in sight.
Despite that, I enjoyed Eudora's perspective. Even if she wasn't always the most reliable narrator, her language and way of looking at the world
...more
Elice
This was a meh story...there was something intriguing about it that I couldn't just stop reading it but I wasn't overly moved by it by any means. I guess all in all it was a relatively entertaining story about a woman trying to find herself and inner strength. The one thing that bothered me was this woman being overly naive about everything (i.e. life in general)- I was wondering it was really more of a mental challenge for her of if her character was written to be that way in order to be more e ...more
For Books' Sake
"At times, it seems that Brashear is trying a little too hard to make her readers understand that she, the author, is herself very well read. Instead of little asides that will either go unnoticed or will allow those in the know to smirk to themselves, we get wordy explanations about why naming a kitten after an Egyptian goddess is appropriate."

(Excerpt from full review of The Goddess of Fried Okra at For Books' Sake)
Kaye
Started out slowly but did improve a lot and by the end of the story I'm glad I did read on, although I still think the premise of the book is inane (a woman, Eudora,aka Pea, searching for the reincarnation of her dead sister). Seriously, she could look the whole world over if she really thought her sister would be reborn.

The characters in Jewel, TX were great. I think I liked some of them better than Pea. At first I was going to give this a 2* but since it improved I gave it a 3* - an enjoyabl
...more
Carol
Good story filled with Texas characters. A big surprise since it was a kindle freebie.While it is definitely chick lit - it is still a fun read with great Texas characters.Pea, whose childhood wasn't great, attempts to find her reincarnated sister. Along the way she picks up a pregnant teen, a con man and a stray kitten. She lands in Small Town Texas where she meets a few more quirky characters. This is a funny, sad, sweet story which moves quickly and holds your attention.
Jenna Anderson
I can't decide if I liked this book or not. The author has a unique way of blending words, gives amazingly clever lines, her characters are vivid, and I cry like a baby at the end.

But... parts of the story were just weird, a bit slow, vague, etc....

I am a slow reader so I feel this hurts my interpretation of some books. So perhaps others who are fast readers will clip through this and think it a lovely read.

Since I am so much on the fence, I gave it a three.

Traci
This was a quick, feel-good book for me.

The main character, Eudora, is on a mission to find her recently deceased sister's reincarnated soul, so she goes on a road trip. She has one year to do so, and along the way, picks up a kitten, a pregnant teenager, and a con man. They stop for a gun in a tiny town, and meet a woman named Glory who introduces Eudora to swordfighting.

This book was exactly as all over the place as it seems to be, but it worked.
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A letter to Rod Stewart resulting in a Cinderella birthday for her daughter sowed the seeds of New York Times and USAToday bestselling author Jean Brashear's writing career. A lifelong avid reader, at the age of forty-five with no experience and no training, she decided to see if she could write a book. It was a wild leap that turned her whole life upside down, but she would tell you that though s ...more
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“Know inside yourself that you're strong. It's the only weapon that matters, and no one can teach that to you.” 11 likes
“I might not know every step of my journey, but standing still wouldn’t accomplish a thing. Sometimes you just had to take a step, whatever the direction, and see what happened.” 6 likes
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