First of all, it’s a milestone day – 1500 followers! And the lucky winner? Carmela Snelbaker – visit her and tell her how much of a good person she is.
It’s been a productive few days of reading; in addition to A Breath of Fresh Air, I also finished The New Year’s Quilt, one of the Elm Creek Quilts novels by homegirl Jennifer Chiaverini.
The New Year’s Quilt doesn’t really seem to fit the bill of the rest of the ECQ series; basically, it’s a pocket-size recap of Sylvia and Andrew’s first few weeks as a newlywed couple – driving from Elm Creek to New York City for Christmas, then to Connecticut to see Andrew’s annoying daughter Amy to drop the news that they eloped – interspersed with badly segued forays into Sylvia’s childhood that don’t really matter.
I actually really enjoy Chiaverini’s sappy, non-committal prose, but this one kind of missed the mark. First of all, the segues to the past were really poorly structured; at least have a little divot when going between past and present, or even a chapter change. Second, the trips back in time to Sylvia’s youth were like the flashback episodes of a sitcom, and not new clips either, clips from past episodes. Those of us who’ve read the earlier novels know all about how Elm Creek Quilts started, Sylvia’s love/hate relationship with Agnes, and Cousin Elizabeth getting married and moving to California. Third, their trip was uninteresting until they got to Connecticut, and once there, Sylvia came up with the stupidest plan, ever, that made her look like a total hypocrite. Even Amy acknowledged her bad acting, which goes to show you that there was some phoning-in involved.
The book review has been brought to you by vinegar. Vinegar: Let’s Hope That This Gets the Crud out of the Coffee Maker.