Monday, June 27, 2011

Ken and Thelma

To paraphrase Mark Twain, I used to be a good boy, however, lately, I must have become a very good boy. I know this because I received a surprise in the mail, a book from one of my favorite people picked up at one of my favorite book stores, Faulkner House in New Orleans.

The book was a copy of Ken and Thelma by Joel L. Fletcher, late of Fredericksburg, Virginia.

Joel was a buddy of Ken Toole, author of A Confederacy of Dunces, and later befriended Ken's mother Thelma, becoming her whipping boy in her later years. Ken and Thelma is the story behind the story of the creation of "A Confederacy of Dunces", Mrs. Toole's struggles to have the book published after her son's death and her constant fight to preserve Ken's legacy.

The book is truly Thelma's story. Thelma wanted what she rightly believed was hers; respect, attention and the opportunity to sit at the head of the table wherever Ken, his book or his literary legacy were considered. She expected much and was often disappointed.

It's a good read. I've passed my copy onto another unsuspecting soul who I hope enjoys it as much as I did.


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