Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Southern Chapter of the Big Girl Panties Club

Title: The Southern Chapter of the Big Girl Panties Club: A Frankilee Baxter Story Author: Lynda Stephenson Publisher: Outskirts Press Pages:357

I received this book from the author.
From Amazon:
Sassy, Witty, And Painfully Honest, Frankilee Baxter Will Steal Your Heart With Her Nerve And Verve...The year is 1958, and schools in the South are rebelling against the 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown vs. Board of Education. In the beginning, Frankilee Baxter, a freshman at Athena College, is not concerned with racial issues. Instead, she is determined to improve her looks, pledge a sorority, find a steady boyfriend and make her name as a journalist at the college newspaper. Her plans are changed, however, when she befriends Eleanor Wilson, the only Negro student on campus. Eleanor is the daughter of a northern minister who is a prominent leader in the NAACP. When life becomes almost more painful and confusing than they can bear, Frankilee and her friends in the dormitory form The Southern Chapter of the Big Girl Panties Club, and they invite Eleanor to join. The BGPC members stand together to protect Eleanor from acts of discrimination. The story also deals with the blossoming love of Frankilee for Trace Godwin, a popular star basketball player and the pledge trainer of his fraternity. When a boy in Trace's fraternity is seriously injured during a campout, the narrative takes a dark turn of mystery and deceit. More complications arise when Frankilee spends Easter weekend with Trace's wealthy, dysfunctional family. A quirky story of love, discrimination, forgiveness, and redemption, The Southern Chapter of the Big Girl Panties Club follows Frankilee and her friends during their freshman year.

I admit, it took me a minute to get into this story, but once I got into it, I couldn't put it down.
Frankilee Baxter is a lovable character. A little naive, but lovable. A college freshman in 1950's Texas, Frankilee longs for womanhood, while at the same time,  she is still a little girl in many ways. When small-town Frankilee falls in love with a rich boy from Houston, there are bound to be differences. Add this to the fact that Frankilee befriends, and becomes roommates with, the only black student on campus, and sparks are bound to fly.
A budding journalism student, Frankilee becomes deeply involved when a fraternity student is badly injured during a hazing incident. And who is making harassing phone calls to their dorm each night?
Although the story has some intense moments, it is told with a sense of humor. (I laughed out loud several times.) It realistically portrays college freshman life and the ins and outs of making it in the (semi) real world.
I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the next episode in Frankilee's crazy life.

 Read this story if...
*you love southern fiction.
*you love stories that take place in the 1950's.
*you love stories about racial issues and integration.


  1. Hi Beth! You will be my F feature for A-Z blogfest. Your blog will be featured on Saturday the 6th.