Whistle Stop

Whistle Stop

A Novel

Now back in print -- Maritta Wolff's 1941 masterpiece about small-town Midwestern life in post-Depression America
Whistle Stop, published to rave reviews and astonishing commercial success, is the story of the Veech family, an oversize, poverty-stricken tribe trying to make good in a cruel world. Through the course of a punishingly hot summer, we experience life with the six children and three adult Veeches as they bicker, brawl, make up, and provide titillating morsels of scandal for the neighborhood. A work of darkly comic grotesque, replete with shades of Flannery O'Connor, Whistle Stop is also a wrenching and earnest rumination on the tragedy of thwarted love.
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  • Scribner | 
  • 384 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743254861 | 
  • April 2005
List Price $27.99

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

As soon as the sun rose from the horizon the heat began, cutting short the cool freshness and the summer morning songs of birds. Kenny Veech, walking in on the highway north of the village, took off his coat and slung it over his shoulder. One of his shoe soles had come loose at the toe, and when he walked it made a scuffling, slapping noise against the concrete. He walked with his shoulders hunched and his head down, half asleep from the warmth of the sun and the rhythmic sound of his flapping shoe sole.

The village lay down the road in front of him. Above the green crowns of trees rose two pointed church steeples and a... see more

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About the Author

Maritta Wolff
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Maritta Wolff

Maritta Wolff was born in 1918. Whistle Stop, her first novel, won the Avery Hopwood Award in 1940. A runaway bestseller, the book was also printed as a special Armed Forces edition for American troops during World War II. Whistle Stop was made into a movie (starring Ava Gardner) in 1946. In the next two decades, Ms. Wolff authored more than five novels, but she hid her final, unpublished manuscript in her refrigerator until her death in 2002. Recently rediscovered, that novel, Sudden Rain, is now available from Scribner.

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