Month: May 2013
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 tragic story of page-turning suspense, exploring the meaning of family, where love and loyalty prevail.
I picked up this book because the cover editorial review compared it to Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier. I truly love that book (who doesn’t?) and so I picked this one up with great expectations.
Unfortunately, who can live up to a classic such as Rebecca? And this book certainly did not. Though there were undertones which were the same (a rushed romance followed by questions regarding the first wife) the big reveal of how the first wife did die was anticlimatic, especially compared to Rebecca.
Also, the secondary ghost story was disappointing. How could she not realize what her brother had done? And the reason behind the visions was, again, anticlimatic.
Standing alone, this book would have been fine but for the fact that it was modeled after Rebecca and advertised to be like it and it simply did not measure up.