The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing by Sheila Turnage

In celebration of Mondays, I've joined the #IMWAYR community along with so many other readers. 

Glory Hallelujah my reading life this past week has been sublime. 

She's back, she's back, Moses (Mo) LoBeau is back! We're talking Anne Shirley reincarnated into a small town in Southern USA in the year 2010 or thereabouts. Mo was introduced to us in Three Times Lucky. If you have not read this book then stop reading right now, rush to your nearest library or bookstore, grab it, and be prepared to have your mind blown. 

The Desperado Detective Agency, aka Mo and her pal Dale, along with the rest of the denizens of Tupelo Landing, are embroiled in another mystery. 
This time, there is a lot more on the line.

Just as Tupelo is about to celebrate its 250th birthday, Miss Lana, Mo's adopted mother, and Miss Lacey, Mo's adoptive grandmother, purchase the dilapidated Tupelo Inn. It was that or be forced to live next to the worst neighbour in the world. Unfortunately their coffers are not as deep as they assumed and the evil woman threatens to repossess the inn unless it the debt is paid in full by November 1st. 

It doesn't leave Mo and Dale much time. If they can't figure out who is haunting the old Inn, interview her, and come up with definitive proof her existence, they might fail their history assignment. If they can't figure out a way to come up with a lot of cash they could lose everything dear to them. If they can't mend fences with the local stillhouse owner, their new friend, Harm, will have no place to call home. 

Sheila Turnage's writing is just plain luscious. Her characters are as memorable as they come. They live real lives filled with pain and anguish. Yet in spite of this, her writing is packed with hilarity and poignant moments. See for yourself in these few quotes. 

"Miss Lana says telling a secret changes the heart of the teller and the listener, both."

"Attila's presentation hit me like Novocaine between the eyes."

"Sometimes you have to leave home to find home. I did."

"Dale and Harm sang and played and danced like the music had moved in and set up housekeeping in their souls, their voices clear and strong, their rhythm wild and true."


You might think this would be enough pleasure in a week's reading, but oh no, it was even better than this. I finished The Pastures of Heaven by John Steinbeck.  In this collection of short stories about families that live in a farming community, Steinbeck made me believe that magic is embedded in the day to day lives of everyday people. ★★★★★

But wait, wait, wait, there's more! 

I have been listening to Lyle Lovett read Kathi Appelt's The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp. I'll tell you more about that next week, once I finish listening and get over having Lyle himself whispering in my ear. 

It's been sublime I tell you, just sublime. 


  1. I loved Three Times Lucky so I MUST read this title. Must read this Appelt title too. Lyle Lovett narrated this? WOW! I haven't warmed up to her since The Underneath but must give another chance.

  2. I couldn't read The Underneath - I was terrified of what would happen. I've loved Keeper and this one though, so I might go back and give it another go. Turnage won't let you down!

  3. Love love love the name of the main character in The Ghost of Tupelo Landing - if only for that I'm probably gonna have to find that novel. :) I have to read at least one Kathi Appelt novel very soon. :) Thanks for sharing all these!

  4. Myra, you will love her to pieces. I suspect that listening to this Appelt title is the way to go. It is very folksy storytelling.