After reading Rhett Butler’s People I thought I needed something a little lighter and easier to read. I remembered having a book by Sandra Dallas on my Challenge List. Alice’s Tulips as I recalled centered around quilting. Perfect I thought and pulled it off the shelf. I began reading and quickly found myself back in the Civil War. I chuckled at my unintentional theme and continued to read. This was an excellent book and a rather good choice to follow Rhett and Scarlett. It is in the first few pages that the reader is introduced to Alice and Charlie Bullock. They have only been married a year when Charlie joins the army and heads off to war. Alice and her mother-in-law are left alone on the family farm in Iowa. They have much to learn about each other and Alice has much to learn about farming. This book gives one an opportunity to view the war from a Yankee viewpoint as well as from a country girl sort of vantage point. As you may recall both Rhett and Scarlett were the children of very wealthy landowners and both were well acquainted with the city. Alice and her mother-in-law, however, lived in a small praire town. The other interesting and somewhat unusual thing about this book is that the story is told through Alice’s letters to her sister, Lizzie. She tells Lizzie all the happenings and her own feelings in great detail. I rather envied the closeness and bond these two sisters seem to have, even miles apart. I would love to see some of the letters Lizzie wrote to Alice. I’m sure her responses to things happening in Alice’s life would be most fascinating. For those of you who enjoy a good whodunit, there was even a bit of a mystery thrown into the mix. Not wanting to spoil the fun, I won’t say anymore. Quilting plays a prominent role in this story and is found throughout the book. The main character, Alice, loves quilting. It brings her a great deal of joy and comfort. She does some quilting on her own as gifts for family and so forth. She and the other ladies in the community all quilt together. These collaborative works of art are sent to the soldiers fighting for our country. Each chapter begins with a paragraph about quilting. These included mention of a particular pattern, style of quilt, and a little history of quilting. This was an excellent book and I highly recommend a visit to Alice’s Tulips.
Alice’s Tulips – Book Review