The Summer Kitchen
Genre: Women's Fiction
Summary (from Goodreads): With her adopted son missing and the rest of her family increasingly estranged, Sandra Kaye Darden is drawn to the little pink house where her Uncle Poppy once provided security. What begins for Sandra as a simple painting project, meant to prepare the house for sale, becomes a secret venture that eventually changes everything.
Cass Blue is having trouble keeping food on the table since she ditched foster care. When Sandra Kaye shows up with lunch one day, Cass has no way of knowing that the meeting will lead to the creation of a place of refuge that could reunite a divided community.
In this moving story of second chances, two unlikely allies realize their ability to make a difference...and the power of what becomes known as the Summer Kitchen to nourish the soul.
Review: Years ago, I read a couple of Lisa Wingate's early novels, and I enjoyed the gentle stories and positive messages they passed along. This book was just what I expected - a nice story about a suburban mother who is facing some challenges in her family life and steps outside her comfort zone by providing food to hungry children in a poor area. It is also told from the perspective of Cass, a young runaway girl who is struggling to make ends meet while caring for a preschooler. It's well-written and easy to read, although Cass's chapters are written in a young girl's dialect that I found a little distracting.... There weren't any surprises in this book, but I was looking forward to the typical happy ending, and so I enjoyed it. The only complaint I had is that everything happened a little too coincidentally and easily to be realistic. But it was a delightful read, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Rating: 4 stars