Cover image for In my momma's kitchen
Title:
In my momma's kitchen
Author:
Nolen, Jerdine.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, [1999]

©1999
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Summary:
A child describes the family events, like making apple butter and having relatives visit, that center around Momma's kitchen.
Language:
English
Reading Level:
AD 530 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 3.9 0.5 42391.

Reading Counts RC K-2 2.8 2 Quiz: 22147 Guided reading level: M.
Added Author:
ISBN:
9780688127602

9780688127619
Format :
Book

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X Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
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PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
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PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
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Summary

Summary

From Talking Pots Day, when the aunts all gather to make the biggest pot of soup in town, to gathering round Gran Lee's stove on a cold winter afternoon, to serenades and stories late at night, when the rest of the world is asleep, "seems like everything good that happens in my house happens in my momma's kitchen." A celebration of African-American families and mommas everywhere, In My Momma's Kitchen tells the story of a year's events in everybody's favorite room.

From Talking Pots Day, when the aunts all gather to make the biggest pot of soup in town, to serenades and stories late at night, when the rest of the world is asleep, "seems like everything good that happens in my house happens in my momma's kitchen." A celebration of African-American life and the bonds that unite all families, generation after generation.


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 3^-8. As in the movie Like Water for Chocolate, these picture books celebrate the intimacy of the family kitchen, the place where important things happen, busy and full and cozy with people cooking, talking, playing, singing together. For middle-grade readers, see Carlson's moving autobiographical story, The Canning Season, on p.1067. In My Momma's Kitchen is told in a child's voice in brief one-and two-page vignettes, with big, framed paintings. The kitchen is the place where good news is shared, where Momma and her sisters cook and laugh and remember, where kids play, where Dad makes his ritual corn-pudding (even if it's more fun watching him cook than having to eat it). Bootman's rich oil paintings show the warmth of the interiors, and his realistic portraits of individual people express the strength of their connections across generations. In the touching last vignette, the child wakes up in the night, goes down into the kitchen, and finds Dad there with the cat, and soon her sister and Mom join them for food, stories, and songs. Yes, it is idyllic (not a hint of a quarrel or disagreement in this family), but this is a great book to start kids telling stories of a special place at home. The appeal of Taulbert's picture book may be less for children than for nostalgic adults who read to them. It's a warm memory of "chubby" Little Cliff, who lives with his great-grandparents, Poppa Joe and Mama Pearl, in a big frame house in the Mississippi Delta in the 1950s. It's a place of neighborliness and home cooking. On his way to buy butter for Mama Pearl's special candied potatoes, Little Cliff is called into people's houses, and each one gives him their own ingredient for Mama Pearl's dish. He gets nutmeg right off the tree, pure vanilla, and fresh grease, and he watches the hand-churning of the butter. Finally, of course, the neighbors join Cliff's family for the feast. Lewis' beautiful, relaxed, light-filled watercolors capture the bonds of the close community through the eyes of the naive child, who finds their caring a bit of a nuisance as well as a source of joy. The best picture--and one many kids will relate to--shows Cliff enduring Cousin Savannah's exuberant kisses, his screwed-up face a mixture of a smile and a grimace. --Hazel Rochman


Publisher's Weekly Review

"Seems like everything good that happens in my house happens in my momma's kitchen," begins the young narrator of this cozy picture-book collection of vignettes, set, appropriately, in the kitchen. There the girl's older sister, Nadene, announces she's won a scholarship to college; her aunts gather to cook and chat on "Talking Pots Day"; and Daddy sings "La Cucaracha" and does the cha-cha as he makes corn pudding. Employing her talent for comfortably paced storytelling and evocative description, Nolen (Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm) uses one- to three-page scenarios to evoke the rhythms and rituals of a close-knit, dynamic African-American family. Whether describing "Gran Lee," the old hand-me-down stove Momma would never part with, or a curious pet cat, Nolen's subtle details add color and depth to the proceedings. Bootman's (Oh, No, Toto!) softly lit, realistic oil portraits match the text's warm mood, capturing many tender moments between the narrator and her relatives. Art and text work together to transport readers to a place where abundant love and sweet memories are staples of daily fare. Ages 5-up. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3-"Seems like everything good that happens in my house happens in my momma's kitchen." So begins the narrator of this book, an unnamed girl. Following are eight short vignettes that detail the various activities that take place in the heart of this loving African-American family's home. As Momma and her sisters gather to make the biggest pot of soup in town, Great-aunt Caroline celebrates her 95th birthday, and the whole family ends up in the kitchen raiding the refrigerator and listening to Daddy's stories. An especially pleasing tale depicts the father's autumn ritual of taking over the kitchen to make corn pudding. The narrator says that, "Watching Daddy make the corn pudding is a lot better than actually eating it" but when he "presents it at the dinner table wearing that smile of his and humming `Glory Hallelujah,' having to eat it is worth it." Bootman's full-page illustrations, done in rich oil paints and framed against a white backdrop, nicely reflect the warmth that radiates from the stories. While the book has no high drama or overt humor, those who read it will share this family's feeling of contentment and quiet satisfaction.-Tom S. Hurlburt, La Crosse Public Library, WI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.