THE SUGAR QUEEN
In Allen's sophomore work, she demonstrates what made her first novel so successful. Her writing is concise yet compelling, her characters multidimensional and authentic, and her pacing precise. This is a book you'll stay up
all night to finish; definitely a keeper!
One night, waitress Della Lee Baker shows up soaking wet, shoeless and battered in Josey's secret hiding place. Hiding Della Lee forces Josey to examine other mysteries -- her father's infidelities, her secret affection for the mailman and her growing friendship with Chloe Findley. Della Lee becomes a fairy godmother to Josey -- and helps her solve the biggest riddle of all. (Bantam, Jun., 276 pp., $22.00)