Don’t Forget the Kettle by Karen Campbell – A personal book review

I don’t need to ask Karen what inspired her to write because the reasons shine though her colourful memoirs of family life with the armed forces. Karen’s ability to move on, adapt, pick up the fragments of her home life, sometimes literally strewn to different corners of the world, (on occasions in totally different directions) always maintaining a balanced sense of perspective let alone good homour, is remarkable.

I loved some of her descriptions, the grey toadlike housing estate for example and the antics of their mad dogs and parrot, not to mention their son as all coped with relocation at regular intervals. I laughed out loud at many of the incidents Karen describes, but also felt deeply her sheer frustration on occasions.

The overriding awareness that it was neighbourliness, bonds of friendships formed almost in an instance not forgetting to mention her underlying family support which carried Karen and her family through the turmoil, left me with a feeling a warmth.

It is also the unusual inclusion of recipes, reminders of stages in Karen’s life, which put the final touches to a truly delightful read and I shall certainly try a few myself.

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