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The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder | [Rebecca Wells]

The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder

A tale of family and friendship, tragedy and triumph, loss and love, The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder features the warmth, humor, soul, and wonder that have made Wells one of today's most cherished writers, and gives us an unforgettable new heroine to treasure.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Bouncy, chirpy, and brave, Calla Lily Ponder faces life's joys and tragedies in the '50s and '60s in La Luna, Louisiana, with help from her hairdresser mother, M'Dear; her best friends, Renee and Sukey; and a delightful cast of the wise and likable characters Wells (Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood) is known for. Judith Ivey's performance is a pure joy - sweet, hopeful, and tender. Her interpretations are completely winning, whether she's describing terrible instances of racism or offering M'Dear's down-home wisdom. Ivey makes it easy to believe in Calla Lily's messages from "The Moon Lady" or the effects of her miraculous healing hands. Ivey's accents ring true, her characters have substance, her voice is lovely, and her timing is perfect. An audio gem.

Publisher's Summary

Known for her beloved Ya-Ya books (Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, Little Altars Everywhere, and Ya-Yas in Bloom), Rebecca Wells has helped women name, claim, and celebrate their shared sisterhood for over a decade.

Now Wells debuts an entirely new cast of characters in this shining stand-alone novel about the pull of first love, the power of life, and the human heart's vast capacity for healing.

The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder is the sweet, sexy, funny journey of Calla Lily's life set in Wells's expanding fictional Louisiana landscape. In the small river town of La Luna, Calla bursts into being, a force of nature as luminous as the flower she is named for. Under the loving light of the Moon Lady, the feminine force that will guide and protect her throughout her life, Calla enjoys a blissful childhood - until it is cut short. Her mother, M'Dear, a woman of rapture and love, teaches Calla compassion, and passes on to her the art of healing through the humble womanly art of "fixing hair". At her mother's side, Calla further learns that this same touch of hands on the human body can quiet her own soul.

It is also on the banks of the La Luna River that Calla encounters sweet, succulent first love, with a boy named Tuck. But when Tuck leaves Calla with a broken heart, she transforms hurt into inspiration and heads for the wild and colorful city of New Orleans to study at L'Académie de Beauté de Crescent.

In that extravagant big river city, she finds her destiny - and comes to understand fully the power of her "healing hands" to change lives and soothe pain, including her own. When Tuck reappears years later, he presents her with an offer that is colored by the memories of lost love. But who knows how Cally Lily, a "daughter of the Moon Lady", will respond?

©2009 Rebecca Wells; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers

What the Critics Say

"The novel is chock-full of Southern charm and sassy wisdom." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (205 )
5 star
 (76)
4 star
 (67)
3 star
 (40)
2 star
 (14)
1 star
 (8)
Overall
4.0 (74 )
5 star
 (35)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (2)
Story
4.2 (72 )
5 star
 (42)
4 star
 (12)
3 star
 (12)
2 star
 (5)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
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  •  
    Linda Billings, MT, USA 07-24-09
    Linda Billings, MT, USA 07-24-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    3
    1
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    Overall
    "Entertaining but..."

    The book started out strong and I didn't want to stop listening, however has it went on, I got the feeling that Calla Lily was a little pious. I actually stopped listening for a couple of days as I felt her "wonderfulness" became too much. Other than that and wishing the ending had been stronger, for the most part the story was entertaining and teh narration was spot on!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Evans Central New Jersey 03-05-12
    D. Evans Central New Jersey 03-05-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
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    152
    24
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    Story
    "Engaging story, great narration! A favorite listen"

    I read a couple of other Rebecca Wells books in the past and enjoyed them, but this story -- about a young girl who grows up in the south -- was my favorite. Very engaging. I couldn't stop listening! It was such a fun story -- happy, sad, funny -- I was pulled in right away. I love Judith Ivey as an actress and was very happy with her acting/narration of the story. Overall it was one of my favorites of all the books I've listened to. And I've listened to a lot!

    I definitely recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Doyline, LA, United States 01-18-12
    Karen Doyline, LA, United States 01-18-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    "Absolutely Fabulous!"
    What did you love best about The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder?

    Just a wonderful story that brought back wonderful childhood memories for me!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The description of everything was Great, made me feel like I was there!


    Have you listened to any of Judith Ivey’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no not yet


    Who was the most memorable character of The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder and why?

    Calla & her girlfriends


    Any additional comments?

    Wish there was a part 2 to pick-up where this story ended! It needs to continue!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacqueline Crocker, Missouri, United States 07-16-11
    Jacqueline Crocker, Missouri, United States 07-16-11 Member Since 2011

    NGMajMom

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    6
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    "Good Summer Read"

    This was my first Rebecca Wells book- I loved it! Narrater, Judith Ivey, brought the characters to life. It is one of those book you don't want to end. I love books about the South.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Connie Farmers BranchUS Minor Outlying Islands 12-05-09
    Connie Farmers BranchUS Minor Outlying Islands 12-05-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    "Calla Lily Ponder"

    This book, was a beautiful story. I enjoyed it tremendously. Hope Rebecca Wells is writing another book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    b 11-30-09
    b 11-30-09 Listener Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    8
    3
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    Overall
    "good story, didn't like narrator"

    I kind of wished I read the hard copy instead of listening to it as an audiobook. the story begins with calla lily as a small girl, so the first few hours you have to endure a narrator with a mature woman's voice trying to talk like a little girl. the effect is pretty annoying.

    it gets better after calla becomes a teenager.

    the story is good though, which is why I gave it 3 stars. I encourage people to listen to a sample before they buy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Summer Marietta, GA, United States 09-15-09
    Summer Marietta, GA, United States 09-15-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    34
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    59
    14
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    2
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    "Rebecca Wells has done it again!!!"

    I hated for this book to end....I enjoyed it so much! I laughed, I cried and most of all, I identified with so many characters. Realistic, spot on and well written, this book rings true to my Southern Belle ears! Don't miss this one!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Krista New York, NY, USA 09-14-09
    Krista New York, NY, USA 09-14-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
    Overall
    "great listen!"

    wonderful, light, and engaging story about the life of the main character, calla lily ponder. colorful characters with deep emotions, read well by the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    09-06-09
    09-06-09 Listener Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    272
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    "The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily"

    If you are from the South -you will love this book. It leaves you with a sweet taste of joy in your heart to read of the bitterness and sweetnes of life. It is a laugh and cry book!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzanne Locust Grove, VA, USA 08-29-09
    Suzanne Locust Grove, VA, USA 08-29-09 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    10
    5
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    "Truly Disappointed"

    Don't need to say more.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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