What fun this Kindle book turned out to be. I heard about Come Out of the Kitchen! on the 16 July post of a weekly feature of Jan Zlendich's Kindle Reader, Kindle E-Books on the Cheap.It was written by Alice Duer Miller, who has a pedigree some Westminster contestants would envy. Published in 1916 it was later made into the 1948 movie, Spring in Park Lane with Anna Neagle and Michael Wilding.
In fact, Miller worked in Hollywood for some time, helping to bring to the screen some of her other books which became Roberta (1935, Fred Astair and Ginger Rogers), Irene (1940, Anna Neagle and Ray Milland), and The White Cliffs of Dover (1945, Irene Dunne.)
Come Out of the Kitchen! features a dashing, clever, and extremely wealthy man from "up north" who rents a house in "the south" - which must be Middleburg, VA - for the hunting season. He insists the house come with servants, and it does: a perfect English butler, a pouty chambermaid, a sassy boot boy, and a cook - a lovely, young cook. By the time three days have passed the northern hero has dismissed the boot boy, the pouty maid (for wearing an expensive French hat that is a twin to that of one of his guests), and the butler.
The cook, with her beauty, charm, and ironic wit, is in no danger of being fired. In fact, at least three of the characters are eager to either hire her or to marry her.
But how can a gentleman admit he has fallen in love with his cook? First he has to find out who she really is. With elements of French farce, sentimental Victorian romances (but with a modern touch and none of the sentiment), and hefty doses of dramatic irony, Come Out of the Kitchen! is surprisingly up-to-date and entirely delightful. Cost: $1.
Can this be possible? How much influence can he have on my prose if the only book I've read by Vonnegut is Cat's Cradle, and that was back in 1994. I gave it a 3.75 on my 1-5 rating scale, which is a little strange because I don't often even move out one decimal place and a quick glance at my database didn't turn up another book with two. I remember nothing about it.
Isn't Kurt Vonnegut a pseudonym for Thomas Pynchon? Do I need to read more contemporary American novels? Or maybe I should be writing them.
Try it and see what sort of (possibly alarming) results you get.