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by Marti Siddons
Description: A secret key, tiny love letters, and a trunk full of Victorian unmentionables--the odd collection it takes to bring together two mismatched neighbors: entrepreneur Oklahoma Lansing and statistician Henry Cork. Put it all together and suddenly there's a lot more for neighbors to cross the street for than a cup of sugar.
eBook Publisher: Awe-Struck E-Books, 1999
eBookwise Release Date: May 2002
10 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [289 KB]
Reading time: 191-268 min.
"Ms. Siddons has written a delightful, fun story about how love can turn even the most staid, methodical man into an emotional wreck as affection, then love, takes over. Gather up some of Miss Rose's favorite milk chocolates and settle in for a heart-warming tale. This is a story that will keep you smiling to the very end. Four stars."--Kathleen Frost, Scribes World Reviews
Prologue Rag dolls couldn't change expressions. They just couldn't.
But if not, then tell me why the spry little Kitchen Spirit perched securely on her satin crescent moon seemed to have more than the normal twinkle in her eye? What had changed?
Certainly not her vantage point. The little character still hung by the kitchen window where she had been placed two years before to insure good luck; her little tag had said, "The right seasoning in your soups/The perfect ingredients for your guests/Nutritious meals for your family/And dining at its best." Her creator had given a more than satisfied smile as she had situated the delicate little doll, fashioned from scraps of this and that, over the spotless porcelain sink of the 93-year-old Miss Rose Devereaux. And there she had remained, charming each visitor who ventured into the spacious, old-fashioned kitchen to linger by the brick fireplace and pass an always-interesting afternoon with Miss Rose.
No. It wasn't her vantage point that had changed.
And certainly the little doll's clothes were the same. Her delicate seven-inch figure was dressed not unlike her owner. The exquisitely tailored miniature dress was a tiny copy of the graceful flowered frocks and shawls Miss Rose had worn all her life. Had in fact been buried in not two months earlier. But why shouldn't her clothes be the same? Hadn't the Kitchen Spirit's creator made no secret that the grand Miss Rose Devereaux had been the inspiration for the successful craft venture that seemed to grace every kitchen in America?
So what did seem different about the little figure on that brisk fall day? The old Victorian house was empty--wasn't it? True. Miss Rose was no longer there to offer her guests a cup of tea from her oversized flowered cups accompanied by a seemingly endless supply of heart-shaped chocolate sugar cookies.
But if you stopped for a moment and closed your eyes, you could almost feel the gracious spirit of Miss Rose beckoning you, telling you--
Wait a minute. That was it. Look again. That little figure delicately reigning over the enchanting kitchen had never held a note in her hand before. Hundreds of thousands of the little lady known as the Kitchen Spirit had been sold around the world over the past two years and about a gazillion accessories were available for her. You could outfit her with the likes of a miniature spatula, a wooden spoon no bigger than a button, a whisk the size of a thimble, to name just a few. But never a note. No.
But there it was. Small. Like a carefully rolled little diploma fastened with a tiny, silver cord. So very tempting to pluck from the determined little hand and unroll. But...
Now it becomes obvious why the figure looks different. Her always-wise eyes look a little wiser. Her kind smile definitely kinder. Just what does she have on her mind?
That little note--however it came to be clutched in that small hand--must be the answer.
But who is it for? And who put it there?
Listen. A truck is pulling into the old gravel driveway, popping the stones under its weight. There's a man's voice. Low, caressing. And intriguing.
Could it be?
No! Did that little stuffed sprite just give a knowing wink?