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Publisher's Summary

A big-hearted coming-of-age debut set in civil rights-era New Orleans - a novel of Southern eccentricity and secrets.
When Ibby Bell's father dies unexpectedly in the summer of 1964, her mother unceremoniously deposits Ibby with her eccentric grandmother Fannie and throws in her father's urn for good measure. Fannie's New Orleans house is like no place Ibby has ever been - and Fannie, who has a tendency to end up in the local asylum - is like no one she has ever met. Fortunately, Fannie's black cook, Queenie, and her smart-mouthed daughter, Dollbaby, take it upon themselves to initiate Ibby into the ways of the South, both its grand traditions and its darkest secrets.
For Fannie's own family history is fraught with tragedy, hidden behind the closed rooms in her ornate Uptown mansion. It will take Ibby's arrival to begin to unlock the mysteries there. And it will take Queenie and Dollbaby's hard-won wisdom to show Ibby that family can sometimes be found in the least expected places.
For fans of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt and The Help, Dollbaby brings to life the charm and unrest of 1960s New Orleans through the eyes of a young girl learning to understand race for the first time.
By turns uplifting and funny, poignant and full of verve, Dollbabyis an audiobook listeners will take to their hearts.
©2014 Laura Lane McNeal (P)2014 Penguin Audio
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Debbie De on 08-15-14

Ibby Bell & The Big House

This a coming of age sothern tale about Ibby Bell a 12yr old simply dropped off by her mothers to live with Ms. Fanny. Southern life is nothing like the North and that summer Ibby learns a lesson she will never forget. 5 🌟 performance & storyline. The perfect southern story for a quiet rainy day. Narration 5 🌟 by January Lavoy. Well worth your credit.

Official DeAnn DeVille Review: Narrator, Writer, Audiobook Review Blogger , Mom

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13 of 13 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Linda on 08-12-14

Don't miss this one!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This is a powerful story, well-written. I couldn't stop listening!

What other book might you compare Dollbaby to and why?

It reminds me of THE HELP and Sue Monk Kidd's THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES. Totally engaging, a sense of being in the world the author portrays.

What about January Lavoy’s performance did you like?

She's a good narrator, with a nice voice and a real talent for accents and inflections.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It touched me very deeply.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Lorna on 07-20-15

Couldn't stop listening to this book! Excellent!

You know your reading a good book when you float away and picture yourself beside the landmarks described in the story! Laura Lane McNeal is a genius story teller as I was gripped from the first chapter. I loved being able to visualise the characters and the era in which the story was written. Brilliant story with lots of twists and turns and the revelation at the end was so unexpected. You have to read this book!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Bernie Farrell on 02-28-15


easy to listen to. Maybe a bit unrealistic at times but very enjoyable overall. recommended

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