Thursday, March 17, 2011

Elm Creek Quilts

I am fascinated by quilts and quilting, and keep struggling to try it myself. In college, I wrote several papers about quilting for my history classes and even did a long presentation on the subject. But when Jennifer Chiaverini's Elm Creek Quilts series came out about 10 years ago, I avoided it.

I'm not sure why I chose not to read the books, or even if I made that choice. I kept telling myself I'd get around to it eventually. I finally picked up the first 2 in the series in December. I was pleasantly surprised by how well written and enjoyable the books were. (I've gotten used to some popular fiction having a decent plot, but poor quality of writing and I was pleased that this was not the case with Elm Creek Quilts.)

These books are very quick and easy to read, and the storylines are compelling. Quilting and sewing are integral to the plot, but I never felt like the author was stretching to include it.

I just finished the latest book in the series, The Union Quilters, which is set during the Civil War. I found the subject matter to be emotionally difficult, but not as difficult as The Lost Quilter. I can't really say why that one was difficult without giving too much away, but I had it from the library for a week or more before I could psych myself up enough to read it.

My favorite part of the books is the story of the relationships between the women. The story takes place in the 20/21st century and centers on a group of 5 women, but some of the books feature the history of family members and community members and take place in the 19th or early 20th century. I enjoy prequels and finding out the story behind the story, so I think this is a fun storytelling device.

You don't really have to be interested in quilting to enjoy these books, in my opinion. They can be read in any order, but I thought it was more meaningful to read them in the order they were released.

I hope you will enjoy these books as much as I did if you decide to give them a shot. I am a member of Amazon Affiliates. This means that if you click on any of these links and then make a purchase at Amazon, I receive a small percentage to help support this blog. Thank you.

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