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Maybelle in Stitches: Quilts of Love Series…

Maybelle in Stitches: Quilts of Love Series

by Joyce Magnin

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Funny story: My mother actually reviewed a Christmas novel by Joyce Magnin. She wasn’t even expecting to… It was a complete surprise to her when the box arrived in the mail – 7 books to review and only a few days to do it.

Needless to say, it was a rough couple of weeks.

In a way this has been a similar situation for me. Because this book was not precisely what I was expecting.

With Maybelle in Stitches, I knew I was getting a book about a woman who’s husband is off at war but I didn’t realize which war.

It’s very interesting, how Joyce brings the period to life – writing about the everyday little things you might not ordinarily glean from a history book, or even doing deep research of the period.

The story line of this book is filled with sadness but that’s not really surprising.

What is surprising is that it’s not depressing. It’s sad but it’s interesting and it pulls you in. You find yourself laughing with Maybelle and you find yourself wanting to reach over and give her a big hug.

If you enjoy books about the WWII era, this is definitely a book you would enjoy!

Give it a try.

And, if you enjoy her writing, you may want to check out some of Joyce Magnin’s other books as well.

Disclaimer: I received this book free in exchange for an honest review! ( )
  JCMorrows | Aug 25, 2015 |
Great Story of a Wife on the WWII Home Front

Quick Summary: Maybelle lives in fear while her husband is off to the war. She works in a factory and has borders that come to work, also.

What I liked: I liked the peek at the WWII era with this having some elements that many do not include. We forget that the people who stayed home also worked for the war effort. They worked in the shipyards, took in borders, and had to eat food that was completely different from their usual. I enjoyed the friendships, and the interactions with the others in the house and town. This is not high suspense, but a gentle story of the times.

What I did not like: Maybelle’s emotions were very mild. I know that the culture of the day called for little obvious reactions, but it seemed that she was able to move on easily after shocks.

The bottom line: I would recommend this for readers of historical Christian romantic fiction.

Rating >
Overall - 4
Creativity - 3
Characters - 4
Engrossing - 3
Writing - 4
Appropriate length to tell the story - 4

I received an ARC from NetGalley. ( )
  Glenajo | Jan 11, 2015 |
This book is about Maybelle Kazinski, a welderette for Sun Shipbuilding and Dock in Chester, Pennsylvania. Maybelle was newly married when her husband was called off to war. Now he is missing in action and she is left to wonder if she will ever see him again. Her friend, Doris is determined to help keep hope alive so when Maybelle finds an unfinished quilt her mother had been making, Doris insists on gathering a few ladies to help finish it. It is a crazy quilt made from material that Maybelle identifies as scraps from her family history.

Maybelle is pretty disheartened by her own lack of skills when it comes to things like sewing, cooking and cleaning, all of the things most women know how to do, and she gave up repeatedly. Her best friend, Doris, was always there to encourage her and nudge her along and I loved that. Everyone needs that kind of friend in their life. Everyone really came together as a group to finish the quilt but it was much more than that. They were all women fighting for the same cause. They all had loved ones at war and each knew the other's sadness and pain. They were a sounding board for each other, a shoulder to lean on. I love that the book was about the war. I love war torn stories. Reading about the devastation and havoc of war can really speak to a person and touch their heart in a deeper way. I did find it a little slow, however. I kept waiting for the pace to pick up but it never did. The storyline was good and I liked the characters but it failed to really draw me into the story, to hook me. It was set in 1943 and the language and setting was true to that time period. One of the major sayings in the book was "what a gas" or "it's a gas". I thought that was great. Anyone that likes sewing or the background of the war efforts (it was mostly about building and repairing war ships) will like this book. If you like a fast paced novel it might not be for you.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review. The opinions expressed are mine alone. I received no monetary compensation for this review. ( )
  Wanda_Barefoot | Apr 13, 2014 |
Set during the WWII years, Maybelle in Stitches by Joyce Magnin, is a story of hope amid the uncertainty of life during war. Bound by common experiences and a need to grasp onto positive thoughts, the women of the Sun Shipyard form a sewing circle and sisterhood by making a crazy quilt of memories. If you like sweet stories from bygone days, then pick up this latest in Abingdon’s Quilts of Love series.

Maybelle is a welderette at the local shipyard, doing her part for the war effort. Her husband, Holden, is serving in Europe, and her thoughts often turn towards him. After her mother’s death, Maybelle discovers pieces of cloth that were destined for a crazy quilt. Despite not being domestically-inclined, she is persuaded by best friend Doris and two new friends from the shipyard to make a quilt that will embody the hope they have for their husbands’ safe return.

Magnin again uses her particular voice to bring to life America during WWII. With references to rationing, black outs and the catchy mottos of the time, she makes the reader feel just what life during the mid-1940s was like. I found Maybelle’s encounter with a new wringer washer and the musing of border Roger on the possibilities of canned dog food amusing and nostalgic. The story is realistic, and there are tears and losses as well as happy reunions for those in the Greatest Generation.

A quick read, Maybelle in Stitches is the perfect thing for a trip back to simpler, yet poignant, times.


(Thanks to Abingdon and LitFuse for my review copy. All opinions are mine alone.) ( )
  vintagebeckie | Apr 3, 2014 |
The Quilts of Love series are really good books. Joyce Magnin is such a talented writer, I've enjoyed all her books. In this series the books are written by different authors with a variety of topics. Set during WWII Maybelle's husband is MIA. She has an unfinished quilt started by her mother and together with other wives decide to finish it. There are many difficulties and bad news that arise, during each quilting session the ladies depend on each other for support.

So well written, the wives are trying to be strong through this horrible time, I felt their pain & grief. I enjoyed the book very much. ( )
  JoyAnne | Apr 3, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
World War II placed numerous women in the work force to aid in the country's war effort. The characters in Maybelle in Stitches are employees of a famous shipyard, the main character and her best friend working as welders. The women in this story are waiting for their husbands to arrive home from the war, passing the time together, visiting and sharing sad news as well as good. The main character's mother died, and when Maybelle was cleaning out her mother's things she discovered a quilt her mother had started, and numerous odd pieces of fabric. Those fabrics turned out to be pieces of cloth saved from clothing her family had worn, pieces of Maybelle's baby quilt, etc. A quilting group eventually formed to piece together memories of the past and the present, bringing these women together not only to create a warm bed covering, but a bit of hope to their lives.

It is obvious that a lot of research went into the writing of this book. The details regarding the shipyard and the type of work that women were doing throughout World War II was interesting. I enjoyed the camaraderie that developed between these women while putting together a crazy quilt of memories. I had a bit of trouble staying focused while reading the daily details of the characters, and the repetition. This book could have used more editing. There were a few discrepancies, etc. The last few chapters were quite enjoyable and I enjoyed the creation of the crazy quilt of memories.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from LitFuse in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.
added by NanceeM | editReviewer, Nancee Marchinowski (Apr 12, 2014)
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Maybelle Kazinzki can't sew, but when she finds an unfinished quilt in the attic of her mother's house she gets the crazy idea to finish it somehow, come heck or high water. She thinks it will help fill the lonely nights while her husband, Holden, is serving overseas during World War II.… (more)

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