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Wedding Ring (A Shenandoah Album Novel) Paperback – 2004
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When Helen needs help, her daughter (Nancy) and granddaughter (Tessa) move in with her, determined to set things right, which includes moving Helen out of the messy house and cleaning it up in order to sell it. Those goals gradually change when Tessa discovers all manner of secrets in the house, including beautiful quilts made by Helen, some deemed "rejects," others beautiful works of art that Helen doesn't really recognize.
Each of these women come to learn about themselves and their relatives, but mostly about their intertwining relationships with one another and their respective spouses: Helen's died on the Arizona after getting her pregnant. Nancy seems to have lost touch, though she still loves her successful husband from a prominent Richmond family. Tessa's grief places her at odds with her attorney husband, who also suffers the loss of their daughter, but also his marriage to Tessa. Will they ultimately divorce, as she seems to want to do? Or does she?
An affecting, beautifully written tale of redemption and forgiveness amidst a greater awareness of family togetherness.
I have found some of my quilting roots in this book...being a quilter for about 10 years now, I didn't have a clue as to why quilting has been so important in my life...with reading Emilie's "Wedding Ring" part of that mystery has been answered.
I fell in love with the story, the characters and the heart of Wedding Ring. Never thinking myself as a good enough quilter to accomplish the actual pattern of a double wedding ring...I have that desire and determination now..and for that I thank the fictional characters and the author.
If you're a quilter, if you're an avid reader...you will enjoy/devour this series...I've just started...don't wait as long as I did to find out about the part of you that just might be missing....I have.
Here's a book I would recommend to women who love to read about southern traditions and families. WEDDING RING by Emilie Richards takes place in the Shenandoah Valley --- Toms Brook, Virginia --- and centers on three generations of women that are learning to deal with each other and come to terms with a death in the family that occurred three years ago. Tessa McCrae had lost her only child Kayley in a car accident, and is still not able to deal with the emotions from this tragedy. She blames herself, and has shut out her husband to the point that she's driving him away, using the excuse of helping out with her grandmother to stay away from Mack during this particular summer. In the mean time, her mother Nancy has asked Tessa to help her with cleaning up Grandmother Helen's home in Toms Brook, and to their dismay they find that it's a mess. The term "pack rat" doesn't even describe the condition of this house.
The many different quilts that are found in the house help bring the bickering women together. Helen and Nancy open up their souls and tell the stories of their childhoods and early years of marriage with the discovery of each quilt. It's a side that Tessa has never seen of each woman and it changes her perspective of both of them.
The Wedding Ring quilt is one that helps unite the three women, and there is a history behind it. Tessa learns how the quilt was created, through the stories told by both Nancy and Helen, and it is a touching story. While the purpose of the title is not apparent from the start, by the end of the book the reader will understand how the Wedding Ring quilt is central to the story. The first of a trilogy of books called the Shenandoah Album trilogy, based on these traditional quilts, I found WEDDING RING a very enjoyable read. It's a type of book that will be enjoyed by women who like to read about family and traditions, in particular those families deeply rooted in the south.
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