Monday, February 6, 2023

February/March Selection: The Kitchen Front by Jennifer Ryan

Well, just a tad under the wire, like everything else in my life at the moment, here is our Cook the Books Club February-March selection, Jennifer Ryan's The Kitchen Front.  Her previous books have been truly delightful, and when I caught up with this one last year it immediately stood out as being perfect for our Cook the Books group. During World War II the stressful times at home called up food innovation and creativity from resourceful women and men too.

From the publishers

Two years into World War II, Britain is feeling her losses: The Nazis have won battles, the Blitz has destroyed cities, and U-boats have cut off the supply of food. In an effort to help housewives with food rationing, a BBC radio program called The Kitchen Front is holding a cooking contest—and the grand prize is a job as the program’s first-ever female co-host. For four very different women, winning the competition would present a crucial chance to change their lives.

For a young widow, it’s a chance to pay off her husband’s debts and keep a roof over her children’s heads. For a kitchen maid, it’s a chance to leave servitude and find freedom. For a lady of the manor, it’s a chance to escape her wealthy husband’s increasingly hostile behavior. And for a trained chef, it’s a chance to challenge the men at the top of her profession.

These four women are giving the competition their all—even if that sometimes means bending the rules. But with so much at stake, will the contest that aims to bring the community together only serve to break it apart?

This novel is an inspiring one for sure, and with lots of retro food ideas that translate into our own times.  I'm looking forward to what meals everyone comes up with.  I loved Ryan's book and hopefully you all will enjoy it as well.  

If you are new to Cook the Books, what we do is read the current selection, then cook something inspired by the book and post it with our thoughts.  You can check out our Information page here.  Deadline for contributing your post is Friday, March 31, 2023.  Please comment with a link to your post when complete.

Claudia, Honey From Rock


Simona Carini said...

I'm half-way through the novel. Four very different women, indeed. Thank you for hosting, Claudia :)

Debra Eliotseats said...

This will be the third WWII historical novel I've read within the past three weeks. I hope I don't get them all confused!

Claudia said...

You're welcome Simona, and Debra there does seem to be a huge number of books dealing with that era, and more continuing to be written.

A Day in the Life on the Farm said...

Hi Claudia,

Loved your selection!! My post went live yesterday. You will find it at

Thanks for hosting.

Amy said...

Great pick! Here's my post:

Claudia said...

Thanks Wendy and Amy, I'm looking forward to reading your posts today! So glad you both enjoyed the book.

Simona Carini said...

Here's my contribution:

Thank you for hosting, Claudia :)

Camilla Mann said...

My post is live. Thanks for hosting.

Marg said...

My post is up. Thanks for choosing this book. I enjoyed it!

Debra Eliotseats said...

Mine just went live:

Thanks for hosting!

Claudia said...

My post is up and before the deadline!