Thursday, April 25, 2013

(33)Nowhere But Home by Liza Palmer

Nowhere but Home

Publication Date: April 2, 2013
Pages: 384

Queen Elizabeth Wake (Queenie to those who know her) got out of North Star, Texas as soon as she possibly could, leaving behind the scandal her mother created with her death.  After college she drifted from city to city and finally landed in New York City where she is a chef at an upscale hotel.  Well, she was, until she got fired for refusing to allow a guest to add ketchup to one of her dishes. With no money, no job, and no home, there is only one place she can go - home to North Star, Texas.

Even though North Star is just the same as it was when she left, the people have all gotten older, including Queenie's sister, Merry Carole and her nephew, Cal. And the gossip-mongers have gotten worse. And then there is Everett, the reason why Queenie high-tailed it out of North Star.  The love of her life who was far too good for the town whore's daughter. Queenie is confused as to what to do when she is offered a unique position preparing the last meals for inmates on death row. Will Queenie stick around North Star and finally put down roots or will the daily life of small town living be too much for her?

Nowhere but Home started off being your normal Chick Lit kind of book. I could relate to the big city girl going home plot line, but the moment she thinks about taking a job cooking the last meals for death row inmates it gets kind of heavy.  Queenie has all sorts of mixed emotions about being back in Texas to begin with, and then to be offered a job preparing the last meal that these people will ever eat?  Throw into the mix her very single ex-boyfriend? Woah.  I was surprised at how much I was sucked into Queenie's story, especially after she went to work at the prison. Her reaction to those meals really touched my heart, she goes home and crawls into bed with her big sister, because she can't bear the thought of being alone. 

Bottom line, Nowhere but Home, is a great little novel with a unique main character.  While Queenie is a little rough around the edges, she has a heart of gold and just wants to be happy. I truly believe that Nowhere but Home would be an excellent selection for your next book club meeting.  There is so much discussion to be had from one little novel, for example, what would YOU choose for your last meal?


Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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