From Publishers Weekly:
n her 14th series installment, Chiaverini picks up the threads from The Runaway Quilt to spin another tale of adventure, love, perseverance and, of course, quilting. When Sylvia Bergstrom Compson and her staff find a stash of old letters hidden in an antique desk in the manor’s attic, the story whips back to 1859 to recount the travails of the formidable Joanna North, an escaped slave who spent a brief respite at Elm Creek Farm. Joanna is recaptured and sent back to the Virginia plantation she thought she had finally escaped, and is eventually dispatched to Charleston to work under her former master’s demanding newlywed niece, Miss Evangeline. As the Civil War looms, Joanna learns that for a slave, nothing-love, family, loyalty-is sacred or certain, and she never ceases plotting her final escape in the patterns of her scrap quilting. This satisfying and redemptive narrative unfolds with cinematic clarity, and Joanna’s journey is sure to have readers holding their breath for her until the last page. (Apr.)
I’ve read most of the books in this series, but I have to be honest, this one was even better than most. These books are a quick read, and most are the tales of the women of Elm Creek Quilts, but as the review says, this is more about a run away slave and her journey after she is recaptured.
I’ve read many books about the times of slavery and most tell of the horrors of how slaves were treated, but this book puts a face to it, and puts you up close and personal with Joanna and her family and the slaves she lives with. I was reminded of the mini-series Roots and how it told these tales. I felt that drawn into the daily challenges that these people faced.
I think this is a perfect summer read, and you don’t have to read the 13 books prior to this in the series, though the “Runaway Quilt” would give you more background on Joanna.
What books have you read that have taken you back in history, and given you a deeper look at a life we can’t imagine?