Ya-Yas in Bloom
Once again, Rebecca Wells is back to charm us with another offering in the Ya-Ya chronicle. And to think, we owe it all to a tiny pecan and a little girl's nose. It all started when four-year-old Teensy Whitman stuck a pecan up her nose, just to see if she could, which warranted a trip to the local doctor in their small Louisiana town of Thornton. And it's here that young Teensy encountered equally vivacious Vivi Walker. The two girls shared a mutual love of the dramatic and soon sought out Necie and Caro, who also shared a certain flair et viola! The Ya-Yas were born!
As in the earlier two books, LITTLE ALTARS EVERYWHERE and THE DIVINE SECRETS OF THE YA-YA SISTERHOOD, YA-YAS IN BLOOM is told by multiple narrators, each serving to illuminate the many colorful characters and all their wonderful foibles. We learn about their early days in 1930s Louisiana, their time spent at the Bob Theater (run by Caro's parents), searching for the elusive Coco Robichaux, and later, the many shows the Ya-Yas mounted at various holiday parties --- opportunities that provided the foundation for young Sidda's future career as a playwright/director. Unlike the previous two books, here we get a little more back story on the other Walker children, especially Vivi's youngest son, Baylor, as he makes his local TV debut as a little singing Buckaroo.
Through all their trials and tribulations, Vivi's constant struggle with Catholicism, the disappearance of Necie's granddaughter, bouts with alcoholism, simmering family tensions, and all the things that make up a satisfying Southern novel, the Ya-Yas and their children, the Petit Ya-Yas, learn to face adversity with grit, determination and --- most importantly --- a sense of style.
Though not as narratively strong as Wells's earlier outings, YA-YAS IN BLOOM still feels like visiting with old friends. From tiny little pecans, great stories grow.
Reviewed by Bronwyn Miller on January 24, 2011
Ya-Yas in Bloom
- Publication Date: April 11, 2006
- Genres: Fiction
- Paperback: 258 pages
- Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
- ISBN-10: 0060953659
- ISBN-13: 9780060953652