The Watermelon King

An endearing, often outrageous blend of fable, tall tale, and
page-turner, The Watermelon King returns to Ashland, Alabama — the fictional town immortalized in Daniel Wallace’s enormously popular Big Fish &#8212 the entire identity of which is based on the long-ago abundance of watermelons.

Thomas Rider knows almost nothing about his parents, only that his mother died the day he was born in Ashland — the Watermelon Capital of the World. He goes there in search of his past, learning of the town”s bizarre history. Most important, he learns about the once annual Watermelon Festival, for which the town nominated a male virgin to be the Watermelon King and orchestrated his performance in a fertility rite for the following year”s crop. Piecing together the details with the help of an offbeat, utterly unforgettable cast of characters, Thomas finds
himself immersed in a series of events that turns everything he knows upside down.

Comic and poignant, and wholly original, The Watermelon King
is a magical novel, steeped in the power of identity, myth, and good old-fashioned southern storytelling.

Praise for The Watermelon King:

“[The Watermelon King] is beautifully sensual, thought-provoking, and stunning in its originality. Highly recommended”


In The Watermelon King, Wallace hits all the right notes of magical realism, creating a world where the supernatural fits alongside the ordinary, where storytellers stretch the plausible, and terror, fear and violence lurk below the surface.”

—Hal Jacobs for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

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