The Kitchen Front - Jennifer Ryan; | Foyles Bookstore
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The Kitchen Front
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The Kitchen Front (Paperback)

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From the bestselling author of The Chilbury Ladies' Choir comes an unforgettable story inspired by the true events of a BBC-sponsored wartime cooking competition.

'A gorgeous novel about making the best of things during difficult times, whilst celebrating the importance of sisterhood and friendship' - Jill Mansell

'The Great British Bake Off set in World War Two . . . an enchanting hug of a novel' - Cathy Kelly

Some wars will be fought at home . . .

Two years into the Second World War, and German U-boats are frequently disrupting Britain's supply of food. In an effort to help housewives with food rationing, a BBC radio programme called The Kitchen Front launches a new cooking contest - and the grand prize is a job as the programme's first-ever female co-host.

For young widow Audrey, winning the competition could be a chance to pay off her husband's debts and keep a roof over her children's heads. However, her estranged sister, Gwendoline, is equally set on success even if her own kitchen maid, Nell, is competing against her. And then there is Zelda, a London-trained chef desperate to succeed in a male-dominated profession - and harbouring a secret that will change everything . . .

Fiction & PoetryHistorical Fiction Publisher: Pan Macmillan Publication Date: 03/03/2022 ISBN-13: 9781529084030  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
Availability: Pre-order for despatch on publication. Pre-Order

Jennifer Ryan is the author of The Chilbury Ladies' Choir. She lives in Ireland with her husband and two children. Originally from Kent and then London, she was previously a non-fiction book editor.

More books by Jennifer Ryan

Customer Reviews

A terrific story set in one of my favourite time periods! As the second world war progresses, there is a dearth of the usual foodstuffs and the Ministry of Food is doing their utmost to entice the nation to use the more unusual – but available – fare. The Kitchen Front is broadcast on BBC radio, hosted by Ambrose but the powers-that-be think a female voice will garner more attention, hence a competition to find someone with the knowledge required to help feed a nation. Four women end up competing for this prized position: a young widow trying to keep body and soul together as well as a roof over the heads of her family whilst paying off her husband’s debts, a female chef tired of competing with men for top jobs, the local lady of the manor who is sick of her husband’s violence and their maid who wants more out of life than being a kitchen drudge. I always enjoy novels concerning the domestic situation during either world war, and this is very much focused on rationing and survival. I’m sure many, like me, will shudder at the thought of eating some of the food mentioned in this book and yet – as my husband just said – if you’re hungry enough, you would eat it. The ingenious ways in which food was made palatable was captivating but there is more to this story than that; the lives of all four women are very different but all entirely believable and a stark reminder that domestic life carried on regardless of the war raging overhead. The author has her finger on the pulse of all things connected to this period and has crafted a superb story, beautifully written with well-developed characters and she has the ability to make you really care about each of them. Absolutely delightful, and easily worth all five glowing stars and a definite recommendation.

- 06/01/2022
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