When a white servant girl violates the order of plantation society, she unleashes a tragedy that exposes the worst and best in the people she has come to call her family.
Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master’s illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin.
Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent and the mistress battles opium addiction. Lavinia finds herself perilously straddling two very different worlds. When she is forced to make a choice, loyalties are brought into question, dangerous truths are laid bare, and lives are put at risk.
The Kitchen House is a book that is currently being circulated around in my book club (man, I miss that). Lately I have been reading one so-so book after another and I have even picked up a few only to put them down after not getting sucked in….I never do that. So I put out a call to my gals for suggestions…. This book did come with a “warning” about how it is not a uplifting book so I guess I didn’t let myself become to emotionally attached to the characters. But funny thing is by me saying that you will do the same and I think it is better to go into this book not knowing. HA! OK Ok….back to my review.
I love historical fiction and while reading this book I got the feeling that this is what life was like on a Southern Plantation in 1801. I felt that this book and story was raw, real and gripping. Every night I stretched out the time I read as long as I could because I wanted to know what was going to happen. Part of me kept waiting and waiting for that next something to happen so I felt cheated a little bit by the warning but I loved it. I truly liked this book and I do recommend it for you to read. This is a book full of secrets, sadness, fear and men who truly believed those with a different skin color are property.
Have you read this book? What did you think?