Fried Green Tomatoes offers insight into humanity

By Gillian Strong
Bishops College
St. John's, Newfoundland

Many of you might be familiar with Fried Green Tomatoes of the big screen, starring Mary Stuart Masterson and Kathy Bates (from Dolores Claiborne). If this movie moved you in any way,if it made you laugh and cry, or it was just something you enjoyed seeing, then I wholeheartedly recommend the book by Fannie Flagg.

One of the things that makes it unique is the method Flagg uses to tell the story of the Alabama town of Whistle Stop. We hear it in the stories told by an aging Southern belle in a nursing home to a middle aged, overweight, and just plain bored housewife, (that's pretty much the medium that was used in movies). You also get narration from the people these stories are about, and the way things actually happened.


But what really made me smile was "The Weems Weekly" the community bulletins of Whistle Stop, spanning some two decades or more. They were truly hilarious. It was through all this that I really felt a connection to the characters, seeing them from so many different spaces.

Fannie Flagg paints a beautiful portrait of how "human" people are, but this book is not all mushy either. There is plenty of adventure, intrigue and mystery. And what's a good book without a great murder scene?

So remember, Fried Green Tomatoes at The Whistle Stop Cafe is totally worth reading. Check it out, it just might make you smile.

Fried Green Tomatoes at The Whistle Stop Cafe
by Fannie Flagg
Fawcett Books; ISBN: 0449911357