For an 11-year-old girl, the world can seem huge and wide to begin with. But for 11-year-old Eileen, growing up in the midst of World War II, the world surely seemed upside down. Boardinghouse Stew is a story based on the real life memories and experiences of author E.E. Smith who, for the summer of 1943, worked as a maid and cook at a Sacramento boardinghouse . . . or, as the home owner preferred it be called, a guest house.
Eileen’s story includes a cast of colorful characters – the six boarders and the home owner, Mrs. Mumson. Each voice is interesting in his or her own way, tied together through the eyes of narrator, young Eileen. None more so than Teddy, the exciting yet enigmatic young many on whom Eileen has a crush.
Boardinghouse Stew is unique in its quiet ordinary-ness. As a reader, I couldn’t help but feel immersed in the world the author has re-created.
I received this book from a publicist in exchange for an honest review.
About the Author
Evelyn Eileen Smith resides in the San Francisco Bay area and is an award-winning playwright of more than a dozen plays. The debut novel, Boardinghouse Stew, was inspired by her own real-life experiences working in a boardinghouse in Sacramento during World War II. Times Like These is based on more real-life adventures through the end of WW II, six years of peace, and the beginning of the Korean War. In her next book, In Love and War, Evelyn shared her experiences as a young bride during wartime and how decisions made in haste affected her entire life. She debuted as a mystery writer with Death by Misadventure, the first in the “ALEXIS J. SMITH—Discreet Inquiries” series, followed by Bad Blood, Russian Roulette, and Prescription For Murder.