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Killer Diller

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  786 ratings  ·  47 reviews
"Wonderful...Clyde Edgerton tells us another of his lovely tall tales."


Listre, North Carolina, is jumping. The Sears twins, Ted and Ned, who run a Baptist college, have opened Nutrition House for overweight Christians. Meanwhile their Project Promise is busy matching the educationally disadvantaged with wayward youth who want to share their tal
Paperback, 272 pages
Published October 14th 1996 by Ballantine Books (first published 1991)
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Average rating 3.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  786 ratings  ·  47 reviews

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Oct 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I gave this 5 stars because it was a fun read and not because it's great literature. Wesley is naive, well-meaning, and exhibits a folksy type of wisdom. The hook for me to read this story was the storyline about a Baptist college having a program for overweight Christians and at the same time running another program to match workers with former inmates.

Something that stuck with me was Wesley's notion of the shallow voice and the deep voice in Chapter 12: "You get the deep voice from somewhere
May 29, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Edgerton fans.
Recommended to Angela by: Nobody...just read some of Edgertons reviews.
Shelves: novel
I enjoyed this book up until the end. It was an enduring, funny story with previous characters "Grandma" & Wesley returning. However I was disappointed with the ending. I found it left me with many unanswered questions. It just felt incomplete. Kind of like Edgerton forgot to write an ending. Just no closure. ...more
Vannessa Anderson
Feb 22, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Killer Diller is a charming story about juvenile delinquents who receive acclaim through the band they create. What I liked about the story is the acceptance of their piano player who’s an autistic savant. It was nice reading a story about teens with a heart.
Apr 17, 2008 rated it really liked it
This story was based on my alma mater. Classic stuff if you know the University.
Jul 18, 2019 rated it liked it
I did not read, Walking Across Egypt. Killer Diller is book #2 in the series. I noticed while I was reading that there must had been a first book, but I didn't feel like I couldn't understand what had already taken place, as situations were explained well.

Wesley is the main character. He got into some trouble in the first book, and is currently living in a half way house in this book. He is a Christian, plays in a band, is a brick layer, has a crush on the Dean of the Christian Baptist College d
Patrick Barry
Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book features the continuing adventures of Wesley Benfield who previously appeared in Walking Across Egypt. In this book Wesley finds love and forms a Baptist song singing rock band with fellow inmates at a halfway house. Filled with Edgerton's gentle Southern humor, you will understand Wesley better if you read Walking Across Egypt first. ...more
Mar 06, 2018 rated it liked it
For every breathtaking passage about humanity, there is a clumsy passage about human behavior, especially by those who are not the main character. It is a novel of great emotion but hamfisted plotting that sells its heartfelt characters short.
Linda Rowland
Jun 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Revisiting some friends from another of his books. Enjoyed this one.
Jul 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Audiobook performed by Norman Dietz. A great satire by one of my favorite writers.
Jan 22, 2021 rated it it was ok
This was a hard book to get through. I liked some other of Edgerton's much more. ...more
Feb 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first exposure to Clyde Edgerton and I'll definitely be back for more. Set at around a Baptist College in Summerlin, NC, this small but darkly hilarious book tells the story of a young man trying to do the right thing in life and the interesting cast of friends he surrounds himself with. Edgerton a NC native captures the area perfectly in all it's goodness and badness.I honestly can't say too much more without spoiling the story but it is an enjoyable and page turning read. ...more
Sally Moore
What I love about Edgerton's writing is his ability to describe what his characters are thinking in the littlest ways. His characters are real. They are trying to do the best they can. The humor comes from the realistic collision between the character and his world. Walking Across Egypt is still my favorite of his books. I did not pick up on this being a sequel like other reviewers have mentioned. This is a nice, light read which I enjoyed. ...more
David Ward
Killer Diller by Clyde Egerton (Ballantine 1981) (Fiction – Mystery). This is set in the small fictional town of Lister, North Carolina. The brothers who run the Baptist College have just opened a Christian weight loss center called “Redemption House” before the business plan was so rudely interrupted. My rating: 7/10, finished 1984.
Jul 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, mystery
I usually really like this author's books. This one was a little different. I couldn't get into the plot and the characters were too simplistic and one dimensional. Previous books included some humor, especially with some of his older characters. There is an older character in this book, but she did not play a very big part in the plot. ...more
Feb 06, 2016 rated it liked it
I actually listened to this as an audio book. It is the story of a boy who is in a half-way house as he tries to get back into society. He works at the local Baptist college and is in a band. It tells of the various people (the other band members, people at the college, his girl friend, etc.) that he meets as he goes through life.
Jul 08, 2009 rated it liked it
Not as good as "Walking Across Egypt" but it was good to find out what happened to Wesley Benton and Miss Maddie. Edgerton sure has a knack for writing physical comedy--I was laughing at the scene of 80+ yr old Miss Maddie swinging on the screen door to her porch in her bare feet. ...more
Lauren Denton
Mar 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book is not really a sequel, but it continues the story of two of the characters from Clyde Edgerton's earlier Walking Across Egypt, which I loved. If you like Southern fiction, read these books. His characters are so real and funny. I laughed out loud a lot in both books. ...more
Dec 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: southrons
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pam Stackhouse
Jan 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
A fun, light read, written by an excellent storyteller. A good book to read if you need to smile. I felt like I was sitting with my Grandpa, listening to him spin a yarn. Edgerton did a great job of creating fun characters without making fun of them. Well, without making fun of the good ones.
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
I was really looking forward to seeing what happened to the characters from Walking Across Egypt. However, this book ended up seeming just a bit too strange. I have mixed feelings about this one!

Sep 16, 2007 rated it it was ok
This was a terrible sequel!
Jan 09, 2009 rated it did not like it
Sequel to Walking Across Egypt but not as good.
Jan 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
A good sequal to Walking Across Egypt.
Jan 16, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: bookcrossing
Not my favorite Clyde Edgerton, but it'll do. He does have a knack for getting a certain segment of society down just right.
Jul 09, 2009 marked it as to-read
Shelves: fiction-humor
Just getting into this book and trying this writer out for the first time. It has not been hysterical so far but its not bad either.
Debbie Maskus
Read for Evening Edition Book Club 11/2004
Jun 12, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is a sequel to Walking Across Egypt. I found this one to be one of the funniest books I've read in a long time. A very quick read. ...more
Dec 26, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction-general
interesting viewpoints for discussion, but weird ending
Titus Burley
Feb 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The first book by Edgerton that I read and one that absolutely hooked me on his writing style. He laughs with but not at the absurdities of southern living.
Jul 24, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
nitty gritty Southern story
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Clyde Edgerton is widely considered one of the premier novelists working in the Southern tradition today, often compared with such masters as Eudora Welty and Flannery O'Connor.

Although most of his books deal with adult concerns--marriage, aging, birth and death--Edgerton's work is most profoundly about family. In books such as Raney, Walking Across Egypt, The Floatplane Notebooks, and Killer Dill

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