Baking Cakes in Kigali: A Novel

by Gaile Parkin | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0385343442 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 5/26/2017
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1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Friday, May 26, 2017
I got this fair-condition ex-library softcover from Better World Books, for another release copy of this delightful book.

It's about Angel Tungaraza, who's devoted to her family (consisting of her husband and their five orphaned grandchildren) and her business (making beautifully-decorated cakes). While she works at expanding her business, she also tends to get involved in the lives of neighbors, clients, and passers-by, often finding ways to promote romance or to right a wrong. I found the book charming, with its characters - especially Angel and her family - being warm and cheerful most of the time, despite the fact that they're living in Rwanda not long after the horrific genocide. Many of the characters lost family in that time, and some suffered horribly themselves, yet the book seems to focus on surviving and making new lives, while honoring the memory of the dead...

There's humor here, whether it's in Angel's shock at a request for a white-on-white anniversary cake - she finds that ugly and depressing when there are so many colors to choose from - or in her attempt to explain to a confused neighbor the difference between "feminist" and "lesbian". (Another neighbor's confusion between "cardamom" and "condoms" leads to a misunderstanding that isn't cleared up for most of the book - but which results in glorious belly-laughs all around when it finally IS cleared up.)

While there are plenty of scenes in which past griefs and bereavements are recalled, not only from the genocide but also from the ongoing AIDS crisis, the tone of the story overall is optimistic and warm. I really enjoyed these characters!

[The family's story continues, from a different character's viewpoint, in When Hoopoes Go To Heaven.]

Journal Entry 2 by wingGoryDetailswing at Elm St. (see notes for details) in Manchester, New Hampshire USA on Saturday, March 03, 2018

Released 1 yr ago (3/3/2018 UTC) at Elm St. (see notes for details) in Manchester, New Hampshire USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

I plan to leave this book in or near Piccola Italia restaurant at 815 Elm St. while stopping by for dinner; hope the finder enjoys the book!

[See other recent releases in NH here.]

*** Released for the 2018 Oh the Places We Can Go release challenge. ***

*** Released for the 2018 Wine+Food Release Challenge. ***

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