Laced with fine storytelling, sharp wit, dead-on observations, and moments of sheer joy, Haven Kimmel's straight-shooting portrait of her childhood gives us a heroine who is wonderfully sweet and sly as she navigates the quirky adult world that surrounds Zippy.
©2001 Haven Kimmel; (P)2001 HighBridge Company
"Filled with good humor, fine storytelling, and acute observations of small-town life." (Library Journal)
"Kimmel's smooth, impeccably humorous prose evokes her childhood as vividly as any novel." (Publishers Weekly)
"Almost dreamlike in some of [her] elusive storytelling, [Kimmel] pulls off a feat that's harder than it looks: write for adults from a child's perspective...Zippy's parents must have done something right to produce a girl who could write such a simple and lovely book." (USA Today)
I hurried to read this after stumbling onto the author's novel, Something Rising Light & Swift, and being bowled over by Haven Kimmel's clear and quirky style. I loved this memoir, her unsentimental and affectionate take on her slightly odd family and her little town and her dry humor. Her reading was perfect. I've recommended this book to everyone I know.
I have never read nor listened to a more charming and entertaining book than Zippy. Haven Kimmel connects with every inflection and believeable word. Each short chapter is a gem of insight into the life of this precociously honest child. If YOU grew up in a small town, you'll identify and appreciate all the memories that will be revisited. The sequel is equally wonderful. Its a great "read" on road trips. Seriouly... my favorite book ever.
Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy
I knew I wanted to get the two Zippy books, and then they went on sale recently. Perfect opportunity, and I downloaded them both.
I just want to commend the author, Haven Kimmel, on her wonderful writing and narration skills. All in all, it was a truly fun listening experience! Kimmel's Zippy voice was amazing--obviously, no one could do it better than her, as she IS Zippy! This book is very funny and had me laughing out loud many times. Zippy tells of her childhood in short "essays" and you really get a feeling that she was an amazing child who made her own way in the world by necessity, as her parents were lacking in many parenting skills. There was just a touch of the bittersweet in this book if you "listen" between the lines, as parenting Zippy was not a priority for her parents. Zippy quickly became her own person and she had quite a memorable childhood despite what was lacking in her parents. I felt I could listen to Zippy's stories endlessly and was sorry when the book ended. Luckily for me, I had the sequel, "She Got Up Off The Couch" waiting in my library.
Highly recommended.--not a child's book but a book for the young at heart.
Haven Kimmel's writing is such that you immediately want to know more about the characters and life in a tiny town in Indiana. Memoirs can be grossly self-indulgent, but this one isn't. It's just engaging, funny and charming.
Listened to this on a trip to and from New Orleans from Indiana (a town just a few miles from Zippy's). Reminded me of my own childhood in so many ways and made me want to get back to writing my own autobiography. I love Haven Kimmel's adult observations about growing up.
Enjoy the author's humor. It was real read but it did not have any reality that took the story dark. A story with a good outlook on life.
I could wile away the hours...
As if Tom Sawyer's "little sister" had written her autobiography in a series of droll vignettes, except Ms. Himmel is a real girl, and her stories are artfully told. She writes really well, reads well, and tells a touching story about growing up in a kooky but loving home, in a community where mother is devout, father is skeptical, and the lady across the lane might just be an old witch. Recommended.
Both were enjoyable and I will return to both in the years in the future.
Her great Indiana accent
No...I wanted it to last
Someone who didn't grow up in a tiny town in the midwest.
A different reader would have improved the experience overall, but as for story, if they would've joined the random stories together to form a point or lesson of some kind. All the stories were entirely disjointed. It was like listening to someone from the old folks home just talk and talk about their "interesting" life when nothing even vaguely significant actually happens. There was one bit where she was investigating a secret regarding a schoolmate's older brother, which was actually the only part of the book that lifted it out of the Entirely Boring category, but then she solved the mystery, described it in one tiny paragraph, and that was the end of it. She could've spoken more about what this meant for the sister of the guy, or like what it meant for the town, or maybe referenced her later, but nope. That was the end of it.
The voice was very softspoken and girlish, which would've been fine for a different book I think? I don't know, her voice didn't flow very well, it seemed like this was her first or second time reading out loud.
Yes, it was inspiring to me that so many people could read a terrible book and think its great. I'm considering writing my own book since apparently the smallest bit of effort rewards success.
Book Disappointment is the greatest disappointment of all. I don't mean to sound so harsh but I'm frustrated by not having a good experience with this read, and no one I know has even heard of this ridiculous bit of literature, so I have no one to complain to.
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