Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Kitchen Daughter; Jael McHenry

Author: Jael McHenry
Publication Year: 2011 
Publisher: Gallery
Edition: Hardcover
Source: personal copy
Date Completed: 7/7/2011 
Setting: 
Rating: 4.5/5
Recommend: yes
 
Ginny Selvaggio is 26 years old and socially awkward,.  It's not her fault and seems beyond her control though, since she has Aspergers.  She has been sheltered and protected by her parents as a result.
 
The story begins with the funeral of Ginny and Amanda's parents who died in an automobile accident. At the funeral, Ginny shows no emotion, and after the funeral she deals with her loss through cooking. Using hand written recipes (featured at the beginning of each chapter), from those who have passed away, Ginny not only creates some wonderful dishes, but she is able to bring the spirit and words of her Nonna, and others to the present.  This process helps Ginny to move forward with what has happened, and soon Ginny realizes that "normal" means different things for different people.

The struggles and challenges Ginny faced were realistic of a woman her age with Aspergers, as I happen to know a young woman her age who loves to cook and behaves much the way Ginny did in this novel.  The author did a terrific job in this respect. She created a sympathetic character in Ginny, that most will cheer for, rather than pity.  A terrific debut novel.

19 comments:

  1. I adored this book and can't wait to see what McHenry comes up with next!

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  2. Glad you enjoyed this one - I liked it to. The sister drove me crazy but in a way that kept me wanting to read more.

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  3. This one is still on my "gotta read it soon" list. So, I look forward to it even a little more now. :-)

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  4. It's on my wish list. I like that you can vouch for the honest portrayal of a young woman living with Aspergers.

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  5. Every review I have read for this book has praised it. I can't wait to get hold of a copy of my own. It sounds great!

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  6. I have read many great reviews for this book. I have it on my tbr list for someday.

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  7. I thought the portrayal of Aspergers was spot on too in this book. Glad you enjoyed this!

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  8. I've been looking forward to your thoughts on this book and it is going on my TBR list.

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  9. Thanks for all your sweet comments about Avery. This book sounds great! I am going to add it to me TBR list. I read a book last year about a boy with Asperger's who is accused of murdering his tutor and it was fabulous but I can't remember the title! Maybe it was a Jodi Picoult novel?

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  10. I really like the sound of this book and the fact that it deals with it's issues so sensitively. I have been reading a myriad of reviews on it, but I think yours is the one that has convinced me that I need to read it. Thanks for the enticing thoughts!

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  11. I have seen this book mentioned a few times, but didn't realise that a character has Aspergers. This goes straight onto my list! Thank you :-)

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  12. This sounds fabulous! I really want to read this book.

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  13. So glad to hear you enjoyed this one. I've got it on my shelf just waiting for me :)

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  14. Yay! I'm happy to see another positive review of this one.

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  15. I'm so glad to see you enjoyed this one! I just picked it up at the library and am looking forward to it!

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  16. I totally agree Diane! I just read this book and loved it. I agree that the author portrayed a realistic view of a young woman with Asperger's. I can't wait for the author's next book!

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  17. Everytime I see this cover I see a woman in a tank top. LOL.

    I'm not sure this one is for me.

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  18. This was such a wonderfully good book and I enjoyed every second of it. So glad you liked it as well!

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  19. I am starting this book next week and am looking forward to it - I have heard such good things! I am glad you felt the character of Ginnie was authentic.

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