RALPH, or WHAT'S EATING THE FOLKS IN FATCHAKULLA COUNTY? by Ned Crabb

RALPH, or WHAT'S EATING THE FOLKS IN FATCHAKULLA COUNTY?

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KIRKUS REVIEW

First-novelist Crabb wants to be the ""P. G. Wodehouse of the South,"" so, as you might guess, this tale of mutilation-murders down in Florida's swampy backwoods panhandle is positively beside itself with provincial-cutesy narration and dialogue. First to die is ornery ole Oren Purvis; they find his head and a leg. Then floozy Flozetta gets stuck in the swamp, and all that's left of her is ""the right cheek of a very large ass."" And then the prime suspect--fake revivalist Dr. Walpurgis Goodpasture--is reduced to an arm, a foot, and one alligatorskin shoe. Crabb's sleuth is one Linwood Spivey who ""could Figure Things Out"" (shades of Winnie-the-Pooh), and once he gets ""somethin percolatin in the ole cranium,"" the culprit is as good as caught. Despite the detection format, mystery readers will just resent the solution, so mark Fatchakulla County off-limits to all but those who'll be satisfied with a few folksy chuckles and unfazed by the grisly black humor.

Pub Date: Jan. 24th, 1978
Publisher: Morrow