Ella Minnow Pea
A Novel in Letters
By Mark Dunn
Anchor Books, Paperback, 9780385722438, 224pp.
Publication Date: September 17, 2002
List Price: $14.95*
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Ella Minnow Pea is a girl living happily on the fictional island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina. Nollop was named after Nevin Nollop, author of the immortal pangram,* “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” Now Ella finds herself acting to save her friends, family, and fellow citizens from the encroaching totalitarianism of the island’s Council, which has banned the use of certain letters of the alphabet as they fall from a memorial statue of Nevin Nollop. As the letters progressively drop from the statue they also disappear from the novel. The result is both a hilarious and moving story of one girl’s fight for freedom of expression, as well as a linguistic tour de force sure to delight word lovers everywhere.
*pangram: a sentence or phrase that includes all the letters of the alphabet
“There’s the whiff of a classic about Ella Minnow Pea.” —The Christian Science Monitor
“A love letter to alphabetarians and logomaniacs everywhere.” --Myla Goldberg
“A curiously compelling . . . satire of human foibles, and a light-stepping commentary on censorship and totalitarianism.” --The Philadelphia Inquirer
“This exceptional, zany book will quickly make you laugh.” --Dallas Morning Herald