Dovey Coe by Frances O’Roark Dowell

I saw a review for this book at Natasha’s blog, Maw Books.  Her review and her gushing over the book, Dovey, and the author, caused me to quickly reserve this at my library….


Dovey Coe us 12 years old and is wise beyond her years.  She spends much of her time doing things with her brother Amos, who is deaf, but certainly not dumb.

And Dovey Coe is not liking Parnell Caraway hanging around her very pretty, older sister Caroline.  He isn’t good for Caroline, she senses that, and she sees how Parnell weasels his way into her families good graces, and it looks like he may even be making his way into Caroline’s heart as well.  As angry as all of this makes Dovey…. she still swears she did not kill him.

I didn’t give away anything here that you can’t read on the back cover.  It’s true…. Parnell does wind up dead.  And it is also true that Dovey is there when it happens.  What this fast paced story is about is centered around this plot as told by Dovey Coe.

Dovey speaks in a distinct twang that I found really added to the story.   While her family doesn’t have much, they make do with what they have and are not lacking for anything.  Parnell Caraway however comes from the flip of this scenario…. he is one of only a couple of kids in town who actually have seen and owned a dollar bill.  He has a car and nice clothes.  Parnell is used to getting what he wants, and what he wants is Caroline Coe.

It weren’t a pretty picture out there on the porch.  Oh the stars was shining, and the crickets was playing their little tune, and the breeze washed the good smell of honeysuckle across the evening.  But the pleasure of all that was ruined by the sight of Parnell Caraway’s arm around my sisters shoulder.

I really enjoyed this read.   I couldn’t help but love Dovey’s character, this strong, intelligent,  little girl.   I have not read this author before, but I am certainly interested in seeing what else she has to offer.

My Amazon Rating is here

Book Journey Map has been updated to include Dovey Coe

If you are going to hike the Appalachian Mountains, then you will need to stop for coffee here

181 pages

Simon and Schuster

Cover Story:  I like it, it helps me picture Dovey as when you hear her voice in the book, I tend to forget she is only twelve.

I picked up this book on loan from my public library.

21 thoughts on “Dovey Coe by Frances O’Roark Dowell

  1. Sounds like it will be a worth while book to read. It takes place in our part of the country and I can picture much of it just from your description. It sounds like the author pretty much hit the characters and region dead on. I’ll be curious to check it out.

  2. This is really good.Parnells death and Dovey being there right on the spot sounds like an Agatha Christie……………….I like !
    This ‘Parnell’ guy’s relationship with Doveys sister and his personality seems pretty interesting too. Good review.

  3. I loved this book. I still remember everything that happened. Even though it has to be at least 5 years since I’ve read it.

    Great Review, maybe I ‘ll go reread this.

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