Resolving to locate her mother’s heirloom quilts after so many years, Sylvia Compson embarks on a cross-country investigation of antique shops, quilt museums, and other, more unexpected places, where offers of assistance are not always what they seem. And as Sylvia recovers some of the missing quilts and accepts others as lost forever, she reflects on the woman her mother was and mourns the woman she never knew.
Following on shortly after book #4 (The Runaway Quilt), this continues to focus on Sylvia and her investigating her family’s past. Sylvia and Andrew are now engaged, and Sylvia is shocked and disappointed to find that her estranged sister sold off all their mother’s quilts before she died. In a desire to have her mother’s wedding quilt for when she and Andrew get married, she starts searching for them to mixed success. The book interweaves chapters between Sylvia and her mother, a supposedly sickly woman who elopes with one of the Bergstrom men.
Once again this book combines a lot about Quilt history and the difficulty attributing quilts to specific people (especially when the pattern has been published in a magazine and the quilter doesn’t name and date the quilt). Family relations continue to run through the book, especially of those between mothers and daughters.
Some threads are left open for the subsequent books. One thing that I wasnt convinced by was Andrew’s children’s objections to the marriage – Amy in particular seemed to object to it over much on what seems to be a fairly flimsy excuse – Sylvia being 7 years older than their father and already having had a serious illness, they object cos they dont “want her to be a burden when she gets sick again”.