Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom Review

I listened to this story as an audiobook. It was engrossing. I found myself listening at every opportunity. The writing beautiful despite some of the dark subjects the book explored. The book is not a super happy story, if you are looking for rainbows and sunshine this is not the book for you. If you can find the happiness in little things and the joy of family that will help. The one thing that I detested about the book was that a lot of the problems in the book were caused by misunderstanding and not speaking to each other. Despite that, the story kept me invested. I loved some characters and loved to hate others. For me, the characters and their relationships made the story.  The narration on the audiobook was excellent and added something to the story.

Amazon Description:
Kathleen Grissom, New York Times bestselling author of the highly anticipated Glory Over Everything, established herself as a remarkable new talent with The Kitchen House, now a contemporary classic. In this gripping novel, a dark secret threatens to expose the best and worst in everyone tied to the estate at a thriving plantation in Virginia in the decades before the Civil War.

Orphaned during her passage from Ireland, young, white Lavinia arrives on the steps of the kitchen house and is placed, as an indentured servant, under the care of Belle, the master’s illegitimate slave daughter. Lavinia learns to cook, clean, and serve food, while guided by the quiet strength and love of her new family.

In time, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, caring for the master’s opium-addicted wife and befriending his dangerous yet protective son. She attempts to straddle the worlds of the kitchen and big house, but her skin color will forever set her apart from Belle and the other slaves.

Through the unique eyes of Lavinia and Belle, Grissom’s debut novel unfolds in a heartbreaking and ultimately hopeful story of class, race, dignity, deep-buried secrets, and familial bonds.

This book is available for checkout through the Lake County Library System.

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