This one checked a lot of great boxes!
- Civil War Era
Eliza Spooner must cope on the Kansas Prairie when her husband Will, for no explained reason, decides in the LAST year of the Civil War to finally volunteer to fight for the Union. Many in their area of Kansas support the Confederacy (think back to 8th grade history here and the Kansas-Nebraska act and the Supreme Court’s Dred Scott decision). Eliza and her children, 14 year old Davey and 12 year old daughter Luzena (yes my, “Please no weird names” annoyance kicked in. Luzena was explained though). She is blessed to have a group of good friends with whom she makes quilts. And it is her love of quilting and her husband that compels her to make a small, lightweight patriotic quilt for Christmas to warm her husband as he marches with the Army.
My Thoughts on This Book
First, this isn’t really a “Christmas” book, but a Civil War era family story. I mentioned above that it was never explained why Will waited so long to join the Army. I also didn’t really think anyone would sacrifice all their fowl and poultry to have feathers to stuff a quilt! Who knows! I found one scene–a memory if I remember correctly, to be very like a scene in the Little House books. No matter. I loved that she wrote a totally believable teenage attitude for the last part of the story! I did find the ending to be contrived–a bit too contrived, but there you go.
Those are little things. I loved that Eliza stepped out in courage and that she lived her faith by being slow to speak and slow to anger, by showing forgiveness, by offering sanctuary and by not giving in to worldly temptations–without being “too good to be true.” These character traits make this a good book for Christian teenagers as well as for adults, though this is pretty much a woman’s book.
A Quilt For Christmas by Sandra Dallas
I listened to the audio version.