My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I received a copy of Peggy Lampman’s The Promise Kitchen through Goodreads.com. Lampman has a gift for descriptive language and a keen eye for the many causes of human suffering. However, she overdoes both of these talents. She often uses many unique and poetic images to describe the same event or emotion. It gets tedious. But what really ruined what could have been an enjoyable story for me was Lampman’s decision to attack almost all of the social injustices and conservation issues we face in the world today. That may be an exaggeration on my part, but I did feel that she should have chosen one or two issues to concentrate on, saving some issues for her future work. Tackling so many – bullying, drugs, poverty, eating local, immigration, racism, etc. – the novel loses focus and becomes tedious. And it makes the characters unlikable. I don’t need to know how they feel about every issue and sometimes knowing makes me care less about them. I don’t like being preached at and I often felt that through they characters rationalizations, I was.