Alleluialu's Reviews > The Kitchen House

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom
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's review
Sep 19, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: my-book-club, historical
Read from March 19 to 29, 2012

This book was our book club selection for March. We all liked it very much. It inspired a great discussion of slavery and how a white girl could end up in such a situation. My ancestors are Irish and some of them could have been in a similar situation in Ireland during the potato famine. I know some of them came over on ships, but none than I know of ended up in the South. They arrived at New York or Boston. Many of them worked in the coal mines in West Virginia and others lived in Pittsburgh, PA and eastern Ohio. Some went as far as Chicago in the 20's. Anyway, my sister and I felt a connection to this Irish girl who was indentured to Captain Pyke. Our book club was interested in how the story actually got on paper as well. The author, Kathleen Grissom didn't want to write about slavery, but she felt compelled and the story, if she was true to her inspirations, came to her and demanded to be told. If she strayed from it, the inspiration was lost. Quite interesting to us. The actual story seemed quite sad to me. The reading of it moved along partly because the chapters alternated between Lavinia (the Irish girl) and Belle (a slave girl on the plantation and daughter to Captain Pyke), and because events kept happening that made you want to see the results. There were times when we just wanted to shout "No more secrets!" and "Just tell them!" I listened to the audiobook as I read which was very enjoyable to me. I like hearing the interpretations of the narrators. It makes the book come alive in a wonderful way. I recommend this book to lovers of historical fiction and those interested in what happened in the South before the Civil War.

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03/19/2012 page 47
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