I really enjoyed Sarah’s Quilt, although I still do not agree with the title even if it is meant to be symbolic. I suppose this is a step-up from the last book’s title, These Is My Words, a title which almost made me never pick it up. But I’m glad I did, These Is My Words was one of the best books I read this year so far.
As for the story told in Sarah‘s Quilt, it is told over many months of the year of 1906. Too much happens to even really discuss, all in the span of a few months. Drought, earthquake, poisoning, killings, tornado, deaths, wildfire…shall I go on? While I believe the number of things that happened over the coarse of the year are capable of happening, I just do not agree with them happening in so short a time frame. All of the events, once I sat and thought about them, started to appear illogical. Yes, all of these things COULD happen but to one person in a few months seems unlikely and likely more of a driving force behind a story when the author could not think of what to write.
Sarah felt like Sarah, but with something missing. Perhaps what was missing was Jack, whose absence made me hesitant to even read Sarah’s Quilt. Sarah is hardworking, overworked and seemingly exhausted so I suppose that could account for the difference felt as well. However, there was a definite lack of spunk on her part--such as the situation with Rudolfo, I think Sarah from These Is My Words would have been quicker to act on the goings on there. I also cannot remember her reading at all in the book, despite others around her reading. The only time her books are mentioned are during the tornado fiasco. She did not even have a book during her ride to San Francisco--now is THAT the Sarah we know?!? Yes, yes, she had so much going on but you would think that would make her turn to some of her favorite books during brief times all the more.
Lazrus, oye. I understood the need of a character to find water. But what the hell was the craziness with this looney tune? Had Lazrus turned out to be a character from These Is My Words all crazed and pining after Sarah still I would have accepted it, I half expected it really. But then it turns out all for not? He is just CRAZY? Come on! Also, Rudolfo’s character seemed to have changed significantly from book 1 to book 2 and while people DO change in such a way, the reason is what I question. Then there is Willie, all I can say about him is I wanted to wring his neck. There were so many negative characters in the book I suppose that is why Udell and his son Aubrey were introduced, but they were not enough to counteract the negativity.
The diary entries in the book seemed superfluous, which is complete contrast to These Is My Words. The dates seemed more like chapters than diary entries as days and days would be explained in one entry. A diary entry should not be twenty pages, it ruins the illusion. I guess the illusion of Sarah being so real in These Is My Words was rather broken in Sarah’s Quilt, where you felt her less strongly.
Overall I DID enjoy the book, hence the four stars. But the book does fail to capture the heart and soul that was found in These Is My Words. And I still miss Jack, but so does Sarah.