READERS might expect Fergus Falls to offer charming, heartwarming tales from the title outpost, a town turned city on the Minnesota prairie, and the self-proclaimed Mushroom Capital of America.
…long-time mayor Francis Mingalone suffers from vivid hallucinations, real-estate tycoon José Hosea kidnaps innocent tourists, and Moira, the bad artist, inflicts her suspect talent on anyone, on any occasion. No one heeds the warnings of the Gnome, who is astute enough to distinguish homonyms. No one understands Tommy Mingalone, the mayor’s nephew, who has subsumed the local baseball team in a quest for frequent flyer miles. No one can figure out the purpose, if not Purpose, of Fergus Falls, either in normal font or italics, although socialite Euphemia Roof-Tischinski might claim it lies in the “Love, Passion, and Valour of Chantalle La Chaumiere,” the syrupy romance she is writing. The task of unraveling the mysteries of both city and novel falls to newspaper columnist Evelyn Kopak, the only woman brave enough to stare into cursed microwave ovens and to date the man who sells them.
So find a comfy chair and bring some raw crimini mushrooms to snack on, because you have now arrived in Fergus Falls. Escape is unlikely, even with the purchase of a first-class ticket on Flight Two, The Golden Argosy, nonstop to Rome. Wisdom may be attainable, if you are willing to accept it from other taxonomic kingdoms. Alternatively, you may watch the sun rise and set, day in and day out, a pattern that probably is just a coincidence.
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