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The Healing Quilt [Paperback]

Lauraine Snelling
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 16 2002
After her Aunt Teza’s test results turn out to be inconclusive, Dot Cooper resolves to raise money for a new mammogram machine, through the creation and auction of a magnificent, king-sized quilt to be sewn by the women of Jefferson City.

Dot’s efforts quickly draw the support of disparate members of the community, including newcomer Beth Donnelly, married to a local pastor; Elaine Giovanni, the stylish wife of a local surgeon; and an ailing Aunt Teza. But as the four different generations work the squares of the quilt, they are also confronted with ragged pieces of their own lives.

Though the women could not be more different on the surface, they hold in common quiet suffering triggered by painful circumstances: the death of children, the abandonment of husbands, the loneliness of depression. Yet their struggles will bring them closer together than they ever could have anticipated, and their lives will be dramatically changed, as together they experience the curative powers of The Healing Quilt.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Quilting has been a template for more than one novel, and Snelling uses this device fairly adeptly as she tells the story of women who fall into friendship while making a quilt to raise money for a new hospital mammogram machine. The quilt is set up at Kit Cooper's mostly empty house-her young daughter, Amber, has recently died of cancer, and Kit's husband, Mark, has been away on business for months, avoiding the pain of their loss. Kit now fears that her beloved Aunt Teza, another quilter and her confidant, will be the next cancer victim. As she stitches her fabric, Beth Donnelly shares with her friends that she desperately wants a baby after her miscarriage, but she also hangs on to a terrible secret. Rich, middle-aged Elaine Giovanni is used to taking charge in quilting and in life, but finds her litigation-happy neighbor is causing things to careen out of control. There are plenty of dogs, kids and marital troubles woven into the story to keep it realistic and grounded, and some lovely descriptive writing. However, while Snelling knows how to turn a good phrase, there are far too many of them-the novel is too long, and the second half lacks punch. Nevertheless, Snelling's treatment of loss mitigated with humor, wit and faith should help this novel have wide appeal in the CBA.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Lauraine Snelling is the author of numerous titles, including six best-selling Red River of the North historical family saga novels. She won a Silver Angel Award for her novel An Untamed Land and a Golden Heart Award for Song of Laughter. She is also the author of two best-selling series for young adults: High Hurdles and The Golden Filly. She and her husband, Wayne, have two grown sons and make their home in California’s Tehachapi Mountains.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring and Irritatingly Contrived Sept. 5 2002
By A Customer
I bought this book expecting to enjoy it. After all the subject matter seems rich with possibilities of spiritual truth and emotional resolution. I was sorely mistaken.
"The Healing Quilt" is absolutely disappointing. The plot is irritatingly contrived. The conflicts are miniscule. (Elaine "deals with unforgiveness". And all that's happening is a petty feud with her neighbour over nothing!) The resolutions (when they actually occur)are simple and unrealistic. After disappearing for more than 7 months, Mark slinks into Aunt Teza's hospital room and Kit flies into his arms "I love you, honey. It's all okay!" There is no communication or real substance in this relationship. The book as a whole has very little depth and the clichéd emotion is predictable. I found the characters extremely unsympathetic and stereotypical. The character of Garth particularly was infuriating with his judgemental and tyrannical "I am the husband" attitude. And it must be nice to live in a world where no one has to go to work at a real job and has copious amounts of time to grow roses and quilt and sew all the day long. There are so many useless characters and situations. By the end of the book, one is left with a fistful of threads that were never woven into the plot but were just left to dangle. Whatever happened with Ryan? With Elaine and George's son and his girlfriend? What in the world is Healing Touch? Thomas' sister and father? What about the mammogramy unit? The research to be done? The women's center? Everything is left hanging out there without any resolution - we must just be expected to assume that it all works out in the end.
In terms of the book's Christian emphasis, the spirituality is unnatural and manufactured. It seems more like an afterthought with no realness or relevancy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars MAKES YOU THINK Oct. 19 2002
Ever since meeting Lauraine Snelling at a writers conference a few years ago, I look forward to an opportunity to read one of her books. I just finished The Healing Quilt. It's a powerful story. My daughter is 18, and the possibility of someone so young going through breast cancer had never occured to me.
Perhaps because of my daughter's age, I strongly identified with Kit's struggle with the loss of her daughter. The synergy of the quilting group brings each woman through her loss to healing. I might not make the same decisions--but the growth reflects the characters we come to know in the book. It made me long for a simpler lifestyle, where I could volunteer for community events and spend time with friends.
Read The Healing Quilt. You will meet yourself in one or more of the women.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Book for Everyone! April 8 2003
This book was awesome. The women were working together for cancer awareness and research and had to come to terms with things in their past. Many important themes were hit on and it's a book I would recomment to anyone and doubly to someone who has faced cancer or post-abortion syndrome. The realities of living with cancer and the heartache of the terrors of abortion were shown in this wonderful novel. The women's faith in God helped them to face their problems and be able to move on with their lives.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the most moving and compelling novel ever written Nov. 29 2003
I finished reading this book in 3 hours. It was the most moving and compelling novel I have ever read. While amazed at how strong this group of women was, they were each struggling with a battle of their own. This book shows you how you can lean on friends in your time of need, and they will always be there for you. It also shows how everyone deals with their own pains and struggles in their own way, but it doesn't mean they love you any less. This novel is a must read for everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Soft Comforts Sept. 23 2002
This gentle, amused, and sympathetic book is rather like a warm quilt on a chilly night. The situations are compelling, though not all the characters succeed; the hispanic maid's English is annoying to anyone who knows a lot of recent hispanic immigrants! But she ties the story together into a very readable book, in which the religious elements are integral and attractive -- no easy task! It would be enjoyed most by a devout Protestant reader, but it's pleasant for anyone.
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