Genre: Literary historical Fiction
Author: Ellen Cooney
Publisher: Publerati, sept 2013
Source: Free for review from the publisher
Sexy Rating: 1
Description from book:
One family. One table. One meal. 350 years.
This dramatic, highly inventive novel presents the story of one family through many generations, as Thanksgiving dinner is prepared.
The narrative moves swiftly and richly through time and changes as we experience the lives of the Morleys against the background of historical events. This is history that comes fully alive, for we become part of the family ourselves, sharing their fortunes and tragedies, knowing their truths from their lies, watching their possessions handed down or lost forever. All along, in the same house, in the same room, Morley women are getting dinner ready, one part at a time, in a room that begins with a hearth of Colonial times and ends as a present-day kitchen.
Thanksgiving serves up history in a lively, entertaining way that offers an original viewpoint of the everyday concerns of one family across the generations.
The story starts in 1662 with Patience and Cale Morley and their meager supply of food and continues with their descendents in increments of 11-29 year spans until the present. Each new date brings us into the November kitchen of the Morley women and in short stories we are drawn into the lives of the Morley family. Family members are not always honorable but they are survivors. The women have made many sacrifices as well as the Morley men. The homestead has undergone many changes by each generation but the kitchen remains the domain of the Morley women.
I found this novel to be well written and totally absorbing. Ms Cooney vividly creates each era and setting and has us understanding the nuances of family interaction throughout the many changes in circumstances. It was interesting that she chose to make many of the women single mothers in times when this would have been scandalous but they didn’t seem to be scadalized.
I enjoyed this book and recommend it as a good read during this holiday time. It gives an overview of American Thanksgiving history through the lives of ordinary citizens in a realistic and compassionate way.