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Francesca's Kitchen

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  893 Ratings  ·  138 Reviews
No one writes about Italian-American families with the humor, warmth, and heart of Peter Pezzelli. With Francesca's Kitchen, she delivers a winning novel about how much we need the closeness of family--even if we don't know it.

Where There's Food, There's Family

For years, Francesca Campanile was the queen of her home. Standing in her kitchen over a bubbling pot of tomato sa
Paperback, 340 pages
Published September 1st 2006 by Kensington (first published August 31st 2002)
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(showing 1-30)
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Glenda L
Jun 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
What a delightful book and very well written. Being a grandmother, I was in the moment. It takes a grandmother to have a little wisdom, a lot of patience and a love of cooking to solve all problems. Lots of family values in this book. I would recommend it.
Feb 25, 2015 rated it liked it
Francesca’s Kitchen is a thoroughly sweet little story about a widowed grandmother, living in Providence, RI, and who’s two daughters and their husbands and children have moved to Oregon and to Florida for job purposes some time ago. Luckily for Francesca, she has her youngest son, Joey, in his thirties, who lives nearby. He’s single and if it wasn’t for him bringing around laundry from time to time, or cooking for him on Sunday that still gives her bit of purpose. Still Francesca feels a bit lo ...more
Sep 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Your stereotypical Italian-American grandmother, Francesca Campanile finds her happiness in caring and cooking for others. For much of her life, those others were her husband and children. Now, bereft of their company due to her husband's death and her childrens' relocation, she finds herself depressed and lonely. It's no fun cooking for only one! Add to that the dreary Rhode Island winter weather and it's easy to understand why Francesca feels a need for someone - anyone - with which to occupy ...more
I read a previous book (given to me by TFQ) by Peter Pezzelli, Every Sunday and I really enjoyed it. I have wanted to read other books by Pezzelli and thought that he might be a good author to use to test out the Kindle eReader.

This is the kind of book that I like- a book about people going about their every day lives and trying to do the best they can. It is also a book about people needing to feel useful and use their skills. It is also a book about not being able to be Superwoman and needing
Jun 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a cute story. Okay, so it's not necessarily totally realistic, since things eventually fall perfectly into place. However, being the child of Italian Americans, I really appreciate Francesca. She is a combination of my mother and grandmother. I enjoy the cooking in the story because I love to cook, and so much of my growing up involved activities in the kitchen. It is a good reminder of how, when people get older, they may begin to feel unneeded, yet we really need them to share their wi ...more
Nov 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
If you don't belong to BookBub or Early Bird Books or any of the other sites for downloading discounted e-books, my advice is either do so because you will find gems like this book or don't subscribe to their daily newsletters because you will buy and buy and buy. This is a warm, as in your heart, novel about a woman that I wish I could be more like. Happy my family is all within a few hours drive and I get quality time with my children and grandchildren. Just wish I could walk to the pantry and ...more
Sep 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It reminded me of my Italian grandmother. Fast read.
Dec 31, 2012 rated it liked it
Sweet but predictable. Could have been condensed into about 100 pages because the plot is pretty thin.
Jo Young Switzer
Mar 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you are looking for a good "vacation read," this might be a great choice. It is a warm, uncontroversial, well-written book by Peter Pezzelli about a widow whose family members have moved away from home. She misses their Sunday dinners together, and most of all, she misses making lots of good Italian food. An independent sort, she decides (against the advice of her widowed friends) to take an after school job as a babysitter for two children whose mother works each day. She finds their home de ...more
Julie Barrett
Apr 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Francesca's Kitchen by Peter Pezzelli
What appealed to me about this book was the fact the woman had raised her Italian family in RI-where I live and now that all the kids have grown and moved away.
She keeps busy by learning new things from books at the library. She's got her act together-she travels to visit all the kids two times a year and they visit her. Some days it's still not enough-too much silence.
The story is depicted in January and it's described exactly how it feels in RI at that time
Robin Nicholas
Jun 24, 2009 rated it it was ok
It was a cute, predictable, simple read. It was a sugary snack. Sometimes sugary snacks hit the spot. I am a little surprised at the high ratings it has recieved-but maybe most of the people rating this book, read books of this sort and this deserves a high rating in their genre. (Could I be any more of a snob....)
Jul 31, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Dawn by: Came across this author at the bookstore.
This is the third book I have read by Peter Pezzelli. I enjoyed this book very much. I would like to see Peter Pezzelli write another book to continue the story of Francesca. I love stories about Italians. Reading about all the good Italian food Francesa would make made me hungry!
Feb 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I got this as a free e-book and I didn't really have any real expectations about the book when I started reading it. I couldn't put it down! It's a wonderful book about an older woman finding a new purpose in life after her children are grown and moved away and her husband has died. 5 stars!
heather mc
Aug 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Loved this little feel-good book. Maybe I'll be a nanny when my kids are gone & I'm an old lady.
Aug 31, 2018 rated it liked it
I had to overcome some issues to like Francesca's Kitchen.

Issue #1: It shouldn't take 60 pages to get across that Francesca is lonely.

Issue #2: Francesca's son is 32 years old which would put her age at about 62. Yet she was referred to as an old woman throughout the book. Her age was never given but she was described as if she were in her eighties. I thought the author must be an ignorant young man who thinks women's lives are meaningless when they hit 60. But from his picture with grey hair, I
May 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A Meaning for One’s Life

This delightful story is about an Italian woman whose daughters have moved away and taken her grandchildren with them. She longs for a purpose in her life and family dinners. She finds a way, but keeps it a secret because she feels her children would disapprove. The outcome is blessings for all. Be prepared to crave Italian food while reading this book! I think many of us empty nesters can relate to this story.
Rachel Rogers
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Lovely story about an elderly woman whose family has left the nest taking a position as a nanny/babysitter for a single mom and her 2 children. What follows is a charming story of growing trust, family, and feeding each other with more than just food.
Susan Nutter
May 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
A good easy read heartfelt story . Contains some good Italian recipes too !
Corinne Driscoll
Mar 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Pleasant, simple, and predictable, but perfect for a non-taxing read. Escapism has its value!
Sep 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
A simple book but sometimes simple is all you need. It made me smile and I often found myself taking a deep breath while sinking deeper into the sofa. The book certainly had a calming effect.
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a beautiful story. Loved every page of it. Can’t wait to read more by this author. The food alone is amazing. I’m making Italian food for dinner tonight because of it. Loved this book!
Basic feel-good kind of book with a happy ending.
Claire Connors
Mar 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Feel good, light reading!
Oct 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
cute story. Loved the recipes also. Would recommend this book
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bookshelf
This was delightful. Francesca's family reminds me so much of my Italian-American relatives in Connecticut. I was attracted to reading this because we are studying il cibo e la cucina in Italian class. The cover of this book drew me in and I have cooked pasta practically every day! Peter Pezzelli does a great job of celebrating the Italian American culture. Brava!
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Warm, funny, and comforting read about life, family, love, and food.
Maxim Antipov
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I didn't expect myself to like it, but I did. Romantic fireplace reading. Really touched by the book. BTW, it would be 5 stars without references to religion.
Dec 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Synopsis: "With her children grown and no family to pester, annoy, guide, love, and, of course, cook for, widowed Francesca feels useless. When she sees Loretta Simmons's ad for a part-time nanny, Francesca is sure she's found the answer. All the single mom wants is someone to fill in for a few hours a day, but it's obvious to Francesca that Loretta and her kids need a lot more."

My Review: This story pretty much progresses the way you would expect it to, but it is still an enjoyable read. I feel
Ana Silva Rosa
Dec 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Prose style: 5
Plot: 4
Depth of characters: 4
Originality: 2
Entertaining: 4
Emotional Reaction: 4
Intellectual Stimulation: 2

I really liked the prose style of this book, though I usually dislike it. And maybe thats because it goes well with the story, which is about an adorable italian lady who loves to cook. I must say that isn't very original; but the book as a whole surprised me!

I loved Francesca's personality and the kid's too. I think I could relate to them (they were really young so I'm not su
Diane Ferbrache
Jun 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Francesca was a wife, mother, and grandmother. She showed her love with food. With her husband deceased and her children living in other cities, she no longer has anyone to watch over and cook for. She is not interested in hanging out at the library like her friends, but when she takes a part time job as a nanny for a single mom, Francesca finds new meaning in her life.

This is a sweet story about making something of your life and sharing your talents. It's pretty predictable and you can see the
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #39 - Francesca's Kitchen 1 1 Feb 27, 2015 10:41AM  
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Peter Pezzelli was born and raised in Rhode Island. A graduate of Wesleyan University, he lives with his wife, two children and their dog in Rhode Island where, most days, he is busy at work at his next novel.

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