Now just so you know, I’m not a book-reading fanatic. I have a hard time pounding through a book each week. But, I do really enjoy reading—and when I read a book, I want it to be really good.
In the summer, I like to take a break from non-fiction books and read something “just for fun!” So with that, I can proudly say that I’ve finished my first novel— and to the very last page this book kept my full attention!
After listening to my new favorite podcast, The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey, and hearing Jamie along with many of her guests talk about books they love, I knew I had to get my hands on The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom. I checked it out from our local library and dove into the story immediately!
Here’s the synopsis about the novel–
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.
All I can say is this book is soooo good! TO THE VERY LAST PAGE! I read it in about a week—and when it was over, I was wishing there was more! Its like when you are finished watching a show and are in a “showhole,” but with a novel, lol!
Thankfully, Grissom just recently released a second book The Glory over Everything: Beyond the Kitchen House, that follows some of the characters from the first book.
I will definitely dive into her new book soon!
If you are looking for a novel with a fascinating story this summer—try this one!