August 27, 2012
The Aloha Quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini
I'm a huge fan of Jennifer Chaiverini's Elm Creek Quilt novels. That being said, if you haven't read much of the series (or any) this review is probably not going to be that helpful for you. You could probably read them as stand-alones in a pinch, but having the background on all of the characters really helps. Especially for this book, where the backstory of the main character is especially relevant.
Bonnie is still reeling from her pending divorce and the infidelities her husband Craig has been having for a long time. At the invitation of a friend, she heads to Hawaii to help her start up a quilting camp on one of the islands there. In Hawaii she really appreciates the beauty of the islands and sets herself to developing a great camp and learning the Hawaiian method of quilting. Problems start arising with her ex and the splitting of assets though, and his rage terrifies her.
Bonnie is a decent character. A little judgemental at times, and easy to anger, but I suppose going through divorce proceedings wouldn't be the nicest thing to experience. Her friend Claire, who invited her to Hawaii I wasn't as fond of. I found her just a little too headstrong and abrasive. The ex-husband, Craig, was a little over the top. But in being so he made a great antagonist in the book. I did miss the original characters of the Elm Creek novels a little, but at least they were mentioned here and there and Bonnie was a part of everything.
I love the thought of a quilt camp in Hawaii. Well, I even just love the thought of Hawaii. But I do have to say, it just seems so unrealistic that that would be where Bonnie got to escape to. Or maybe that's just jealousy on my part. This book involved a lot of quilting too, which I was appreciative of as it's not always like that in these books. It really made me want to try to do a Hawaiian quilt of my own, although I don't think my skills are at that level yet. Regardless, it was a fun read and I couldn't put the book down until I had read it cover to cover.
As always, I look forward to more of Chiaverini's work. Good thing I have the next book in my to-read pile!
The Aloha Quilt