The Glass Kitchen

"The Glass Kitchen" by Linda Francis Lee is an interesting contemporary romantic read that has some fantasy interwoven into it. I found it an interesting and strange, but worthwhile read.

Portia has been through a horrible marriage and the death of her grandmother. She ends up moving to NYC, from Texas, with a broken heart. She has two suitcases and her grandmother's Glass Kitchen Cookbooks as well as a 'gift' that she no longer wants. It’s at this point I found this book a somewhat strange book, but I continued on with the read. After reading a little further I was able to understand the thought pattern of his author and it was a good one, I liked it.

There is the concept of 'The Knowing'. As a reader I was wondering, WOW, what is that? Portia has stopped listening to 'The Knowing'. The Knowing consists of urges to create recipes (dishes) that will tell her that something will happen. This might be good or bad...however, she will never know until it happens. I enjoyed how this was presented by the author. There are consequences of The Knowing. Consequences that Portia wants nothing to do with…especially after what had happened to her grandmother. This I could very well understand from the read.

Life moves on and takes her to NYC. We find Portia wanting to get on with her life in her new place. She thought she would be living with her sisters. But the author takes us in a different direction and presents us with new people... Gabriel Kane and his daughters.

I liked how the author tuned the reader into one of the daughter's. We get in tune with Ariel as well as Gabriel, who had a few secrets of his own. I think this really helped Portia come out of her funk. Portia ends up helping so much with Gabriel's daughter. She makes a connection and relationship with this family. I could see it...the urging for Portia to get back into the kitchen again even though she still remembers what had happened to her earlier. WOW...this was the best part of the story.

I don't want to tell too much and spoil the story. I will say I thought this author did a good job at explaining the story situations. This is a well written novel that is deep and entwined with secrets. These secrets are revealed and surprises as well. These things seem to have a way of coming out. Readers will be kept zoomed into turning the pages until the end.

This would be the perfect book for a women’s fiction book club or for chick-lit readers.

Oh and if you are into recipes, make sure to check out the end of this novel. Readers are in for some wonderful recipes. I tried (a few) and really did love them!

Book Blurb for The Glass Kitchen

With the glass kitchen,

Linda Francis Lee has served up a novel that is about the courage

it takes to follow your heart and be yourself.

A true recipe for life.

Portia Cuthcart never intended to leave Texas. Her dream was to run the Glass Kitchen restaurant her grandmother built decades ago. But after a string of betrayals and the loss of her legacy, Portia is determined to start a new life with her sisters in Manhattan . . . and never cook again. But when she moves into a dilapidated brownstone on the Upper West Side, she meets twelve-year-old Ariel and her widowed father Gabriel, a man with his hands full trying to raise two daughters on his own. Soon, a promise made to her sisters forces Portia back into a world of magical food and swirling emotions, where she must confront everything she has been running from. What seems so simple on the surface is anything but when long-held secrets are revealed, rivalries exposed, and the promise of new love stirs to life like chocolate mixing with cream. The Glass Kitchen is a delicious novel, a tempestuous story of a woman washed up on the shores of Manhattan who discovers that a kitchen—like an island—can be a refuge, if only she has the courage to give in to the pull of love, the power of forgiveness, and accept the complications of what it means to be family.

Night Owl Reviews May, 2014 4.50