The Quilted Heart is 3 novellas in one book. All of which have in common Mrs. Elsa Brantenberg's quilting and Bible study. The women of the little St. Charles community meet here to try to understand the trials of their life after the ending of the Civil War. In the first, Dandelions on the Wind, Maren who is an immagrant to the country as a jilted mail order bride too poor to return back to her home she lives with Mrs. Brantenberg and cares for her little 4 year old granddaughter, Gabi. She has grown quite close to the family that is until Gabi's father returns from war Maren becomes uncertain of her future and gets a job in town so that she can earn money for her passage home--buuuuut she feels pulled toward Wooly, Gabi's father. What to do, what to do. Bending Toward the Sun continues the story but takes it up for the point of view of Emilie, another community woman from the quilting/Bible study. Emilie has been helping her father run the general store of St. Charles. While all of her friends are paring off with new male interests she has no real interests outside of helping her aging father run the store but Mr. Heinrich has bigger plans for his daughter, he wants Emilie to go to the University and further her education. Then just to spice things up she meets again a boy who has grown into a man during the war. He has an Irish background and her father is sure that an Irish man is not good enough for his daughter. The story continues on in Ripples Along the Shore Caroline has all during this book not heard from her husband. She is afraid of what to think--she doesn't think he could have been killed. She would have felt it wouldn't she have? Garrett Cowlishaw has come into town in order to lead a wagon train to the west and into California. Caroline instantly hates him because he was a Confederate soldier. Even though St. Charles is in Missouri which had gone with the south this group is decidedly antislavery and Caroline just can't stand the thought of this Confederate in her town--that is before he told her he would see if he could find out the where abouts of her husband and so she decides to trust him.
These stories are all good and I like that though the story is a continuation of each the plot is different in each. I have like all of Ms Hodgson's books and so of course I liked this one. I think that this is the best that she has done so far. This book would be good reading for girls and women of any age and I would encourage your reading this book.
I recieved this book from Waterbrook Press for this review.