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The Wishing Thread: A Novel Paperback – August 27, 2013
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Gift or curse, the magic of the Van Ripper family is in the knitting—so the residents of Tarrytown, New York, speculate. Van Allen knits together this pleasantly entertaining tale as easily as the Van Ripper women knit together the often unraveling threads of people’s lives. When matriarch Mariah Van Ripper’s death reunites her three nieces—awkwardly shy Aubrey; cynical, uptight Bitty; and free-spirit Meggie—together they must decide how far they will go in order to preserve the Stitchery’s secrets. The Stitchery, their ancestral home, located in contemporary Rip Van Winkle territory, has housed generations of Van Ripper women, whose gift for magic is intimately tied in with the beautiful items they knit. Casting spells on and off with the clicks of their needles, the sisters contend with the wishes and wants of others as well as their own deepest desires. Chick-lit cozy meets magical realism with inevitably warm and fuzzy results. --Margaret Flanagan
“Reader to reader, knitter to knitter: You’re going to love this book.”—Debbie Macomber
“With deft needlework, a dash of folklore, and some good old-fashioned family angst, Lisa Van Allen knits together the threads of second chances, the pleasure of giving, the complications of sisterhood, and love. There’s a bit of magic in The Wishing Thread, in the words and the story as well as in the yarn.”—Meg Waite Clayton, author of The Wednesday Sisters
“Rich in myth and mystery, The Wishing Thread explores the tangle that is being a woman—from family and friendship to romance and community. Prepare to be ensnared, enthralled, enchanted!”—USA Today bestselling author Christie Ridgway
“The Wishing Thread is a lyrical, emotional, finely knit portrayal of three sisters struggling with love, magic and sacrifice. This is the best book I’ve read all year.”—Lisa Verge Higgins, author of The Proper Care and Maintenance of Friendship
“An intriguing story of three sisters tied by blood and a strange inheritance, each searching for a way to belong in that place where magic and life intersect. Wonderful!”—Shelley Noble, author of Beach Colors
“Van Allen knits together this pleasantly entertaining tale as easily as the Van Ripper women knit together the often unraveling threads of people’s lives. . . . Chick-lit cozy meets magical realism with inevitably warm and fuzzy results.”—Booklist
“Great for fans of Sarah Addison Allen and Alice Hoffman; you know it’s whimsical when you learn that debut author Allen owns a pet hedgehog.”—Library Journal
“Fans of magical realism will want to pick up this enjoyable novel, which not only weaves magic through stitchery, but also weaves a realistic story about family and sisterhood and the threads that pull us back home.”—RT Book Reviews
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Another reviewer mentioned having a 60 page rule, if the book hasn't grabbed them by then, they move on to another. Because of this book, I'm adopting that rule.
Although I give this book 4 instead of 5 stars, it had some wonderfully put-together sentences. An example:"Suffering could pull a family together...drawing everyone in to a central point. Or it could scanner a family apart, centripetal forces slingshotting each person wildly away...or do both." Another amazing sentence: "The library's warm and curious nature could not be repressed by the grumpy neoclassicism of its facade."
BUT. BUT. It felt forced. And I was left thinking about what it could have been. I really wanted to love Audrey, the central character, but I couldn't quite suspend my disbelief, I didn't love her or even believe in her. It was much, much easier for me to believe someone could knit a spell into a pair of mittens than to believe someone who had never had a romantic relationship would behave the way she did in one. And it was really difficult for me to believe in her sisters' motivations, either. The characters seemed created just for the sake of driving the plot, and they changed stripe (or dye lot?) when necessary to move things along.
In all, it was a fine, fun read, but "just okay"--not one I'll carry with me once I've deleted it from my Kindle app. I would, however, like to see what Lisa Van Allen does next!
Place in a secret room where we (the granchildren) were always trying to sneak in to find out what the great mystery was. My own mother practiced herbal medicine,
With moderate success. One thing in common with these matriarchs was the wonderful sense of accomplishments to make so much with so little. They were
Confident, brilliant and determined women who made the most of whatever little they had. Without batting an eye.
Ms Van Allen brings those women back to me with her wonderfully written characters who love big and believe in magic. They are daughters, granddaughters,sisters, friends.
They may face some setbacks, but boy oh boy, do they ever come back, better than ever. Ms Van Allen gives me the magic back. Her characters are bigger than life, but I
Take them at face value, because I grew up with such women. They are magic and vulnerable and smart and consequential. They believe in themselves even when things
Go bad. They are warriors in the best sense of the word, we need heroes like them. They are out there,we just have to look hard to find them. And believe in the magic.
Thank you Lisa Van Allen for another great piece of magic.
The Wishing Thread is the story of three sisters, Bitty, Aubrey, and Meggie, but the main character is Aubrey. Aubrey lives in The Stitchery with her Aunt Mariah Van Ripple. When her aunt dies, the other sisters return. They want her to sell the Stitchery and get on with her life.
But there is magic in the Stitchery. Magic that has been passed down and Aubrey is the latest in the holder of the magic. Like her aunt before her, Aubrey can knit spells. People come asking for all sorts of things, and Aubrey can knit them up something to fulfill their desires.
This was such a delightful read and if you knit or craft or just love sweet stories with a little magic thrown in, you will love this.