[Jennifer Chiaverini] hits all the right emotional notes in this heartwarming story.
I marvel at the craft of the work, the quiet architecture which allows the story to carry the load. Like the quilts described, the novel itself is carefully pieced together and each piece feels, sounds and is fat with history and meaning. This is a quiet, beautiful novel, full of gentle wisdom and genuine humility. It is a rare work these days.
— Percival Everett, author of FRENZY and WATERSHED
I enjoyed every word of Jennifer Chiaverini's story about friendship and forgiveness. She very accurately portrays the spirit and sense of humor of today's quilters. If The Quilter's Apprentice were a true story, I would love to be a part of Sarah's and Sylvia's brilliant project.
— Marianne Fons, author of QUILTER’S COMPLETE GUIDE
“Fates and Traitors is a fascinating, thrilling look into the women who loved one of history’s greatest villains. Meticulously researched and beautifully told, Jennifer Chiaverini delves deep into the complicated, nuanced world of John Wilkes Booth.”
—Anton DiSclafani, author of The After Party and The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls
In this latest entry to the bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series, quilting queen Bonnie Markham explores Hawaii and learns about the islands' quilting traditions while setting up a tropical quilt camp. Weary from a difficult divorce battle, Bonnie leaves beloved Elm Creek Manor and takes up her friend's invitation to start the camp; once in Hawaii, she gets to work on hiring staff and making her version of a Hawaiian quilt. When her mean-spirited ex-husband-to-be demands half her share in Elm Creek as part of the settlement, Bonnie takes drastic measures to protect the estate and her friends. Still, the big changes are hard to take, and Bonnie's not sure she can follow through. With homey details and a strong sense of the connections that bind women, friends, and families, Chiaverini (Circle of Quilters) lovingly crafts her tale about a woman stitching together a new life and a new project. Series fans will enjoy this latest entry, and those new to the quilting bee should have no problem finding their groove
— Publisher’s Weekly
“Cherished Reader, Should you come upon Enchantress of Numbers by Jennifer Chiaverini, consider yourself quite fortunate indeed…Chiaverini makes a convincing case that Ada Byron King is a woman worth celebrating.”
An Amazon Best Book of December 2017: “In this biographical novel from author Jennifer Chiaverini, we journey into the life of Ada Byron King, Countess of Lovelace, now largely considered to be the world’s first commuter programmer. Unknown to me, Ada was raised in the shadow of a famous father, as the only legitimate daughter of poet Lord Byron. We soon learn the eccentric Byron abandons his new family a month after Ada’s birth, never to see either his child or wife again. Ada’s mother becomes obsessed with purging all things creative and imaginative from Ada’s upbringing, in the hopes of saving her child from the same perceived mania that plagued her poet husband. With an ever-changing cast of tutors and governesses, and forbidden from most artistic outlets, Ada throws herself headfirst into academia and mathematics. Chiaverini expertly illuminates the adversities Ada faced in melding her analytical prowess with the creative thought she was told for so long to suppress. While Ada was largely unrecognized for her accomplishments while alive, this novel is a generous ode to one of history’s most extraordinary female trailblazers.”
—Sydney Dale, Amazon.com
In 1862, war comes knocking at the door of the community of Water's Ford, Pa., and as Union supporters, the local men rally to answer the call to enlist. As their men march off to their unknown fates, the women of Elm Creek Valley are determined to contribute their share to the war effort and use their sewing and quilting skills to craft quilts and other items so desperately needed by their menfolk.
In “The Union Quilters,” Jennifer Chiaverini's latest Elm Creek Quilts novel, the women left behind in times of war show their strength and compassion in a fascinating historical story that sheds a new light on the hardships faced at home during the arduous Civil War.
The ladies of Water's Ford each face widely varying yet common fears as the Civil War tearing their country apart rages on. Constance Wright's husband Abel is an accepted member of the community and a skilled rifleman, but is turned away from enlisting simply because he is black. Dorothea's pregnant sister-in-law Charlotte Granger is worried about her husband, Dr. [Jonathan] Granger, who sends comforting, regular updates on the men from home to his wife, but also sends more detailed letters to his former love, Gerda Berstrom, causing ill-will and strife among the two women.
Anneke Bergstrom must face whispers from the town since her husband refused to enlist, preferring to stay out of the fray, and Dorothea Granger Nelson worries about her educated schoolmaster husband Thomas who carried her Dove in the Window quilt into battle with him, not realizing that she was pregnant with their second child.
A patriotic project to supply new hospitals in Washington with quilts bands the women together, and the project turns into an opportunity for them to show they are capable of running their lives, families and community with great success. Though tension and worry reign over the small community, the women do their best to support one another and hold their families together until their men come marching home.
The 17th book in the Elm Creek Quilts series, “The Union Quilters” is a deeper look at the original group of women who began the quilting group that has been the focus of Chiaverini's novels. With a sharp eye to detail and historical fact, Chiaverini has combined the stories of the women left behind during war with how quilting allowed the women to cope to create an intriguing story that is timely with the 150th anniversary of the Civil War approaching. This novel is one of Chiaverini's best works to date.
“Chiaverini offers an intimate and historically sound exploration of the years leading up to and through WWII… exceptionally insightful, making for a sweeping and memorable WWII novel.”