Monday, July 06, 2009

My Review: The Sweetgum Ladies Knit for Love

If I read an entire 348 page book between 6 and 11 one night, I guess that means I liked it. The Sweetgum Ladies Knit for Love is the second book in Beth Pattillo's series. The first was The Sweetgum Knit Lit Society, which I have already reviewed.

Like the first book (which you do not need to read in order to enjoy this one), Knit for Love is about a group of ladies who meet in the local church each month to discuss a book and show off a knitting project related to the book. The group is lead by Eugenie, the town librarian, who just married her high school sweetheart, 40+ years after high school. He is the minister and she is adjusting to life as the minister's wife. Other members include Maria, a 30ish single woman who is supporting her mom and two sisters after her father's death. They've had to sell the family farm to pay of debts and the small-town hardware store that is their livelihood isn't doing well. Camille owns the local clothing store, which she inherited from her mother. Her mother died in the last book, after a long illness. Camille has always wanted to go to college and to leave Sweetgum. Now that she has her chance, a complication has arisen. His name is Dante. He is an ex-NFL player, the former star of the local high school team, who is now back in town as the new head coach--oh, and he's Black, and she's not. Esther was widowed in the last book and now she is learning that her husband left her almost no assets. How is she going to make it? Hannah is a troubled teen. She has been taken in by Eugenie and her new husband, but not by the kids at school, except for the new star quarterback, who had been a childhood friend. Will he stick by her when cheerleaders get in his path? Merry is the mom of four, including a six month old. Her husband has his own law firm, which is on shaky financial grounds. He needs more help but can't afford to hire anyone. She has always stayed home with the kids and doesn't want to leave this baby; but realizes that providing for the kids is a kind of love too.

Their reading theme this book year is love stories and each of these women is dealing with love of one sort or another and trying to determine how it fits in her life. The loves in this book include an inter-racial relationship, self-love, love of animals, marital love, parent-child love, teen love, all of which can be a reflection of Divine love.

This "group of women" book will probably appeal to you if you like Debbie Macomber's Blossom Street books, or the Potluck Club books, or other books where a group of women share their lives. While this book is classified as Chrisian fiction, it is about the least preachy of the genre I've read. Much of the action takes place in the church and Eugenie is married to the minister, but we don't hear sermons or prayers; no gets "saved" and no one's problems go away because she found God.

The end of the book left a lot of ends open for the next book, which I can hardly wait to read.

First Wildcard will tour this book August 28. Check back then to read the first chapter.

1 comment:

  1. This was such a sweet and charming story. Although it is the second in the Sweetgum Knit Lit Society series, it can definitely be read as a stand-alone novel. The characters were very likeable and had enough depth where you could actually see yourself as friends with any of them. Their monthly book club selections seem to be somewhat reminiscent of what they are going through in their own personal romance lives. I loved the details of their small Southern town - it was very easy to visualize - I wanna live there! Although some parts were predictable, the story itself was very engaging and I found that I did not want to put it down. It makes you want to join a book club and work on monthly knitting projects (in my case, I'd have to learn to knit first), but I still found this whole idea very enjoyable. I also want to mention that the book is classified as Christian Fiction, but it is something that believers or non-believers can enjoy. Their meetings do take place at the local church and one of the women is married to the preacher, but that's about as religious as it got. There were a lot of loose ends at the end but I can see where there will definitely be a next installment. Ms. Pattillo's novel is very engrossing and I will definitely be on the lookout for more from her.


View My Stats