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How to Knit a Heart Back Home (Cypress Hollow Yarn Series #2)

( 27 )

Overview

Lucy Harrison sells books by day and volunteers with the Cypress Hollow fire department by night. Her life is just the way she likes it—full, even-keeled, and smooth—until bad-boy ex-cop Owen Bancroft comes back to town. Lucy has always been fearless, never scared about diving in to help others. When it comes to risking her heart, however, she realizes she's absolutely terrified.

In a small town like Cypress Hollow, everyone knows your business—and there is nowhere to hide. Then...

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How to Knit a Heart Back Home (Cypress Hollow Yarn Series #2)

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Overview

Lucy Harrison sells books by day and volunteers with the Cypress Hollow fire department by night. Her life is just the way she likes it—full, even-keeled, and smooth—until bad-boy ex-cop Owen Bancroft comes back to town. Lucy has always been fearless, never scared about diving in to help others. When it comes to risking her heart, however, she realizes she's absolutely terrified.

In a small town like Cypress Hollow, everyone knows your business—and there is nowhere to hide. Then Lucy and Owen are thrown together by the discovery of the lost work of local legend, knitting guru Eliza Carpenter. Now Owen, adrift and struggling to redefine himself as a civilian without a badge, will have to learn how to open himself up to life's new possibilities . . . while Lucy decides just how much of herself she's willing to gamble on love.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The warm and fuzzy romance in Herron's second Cypress Hollow yarn (after How to Knit a Love Song) centers on Lucy Harrison, fire brigade volunteer, bookseller, and fan of the famous knitting work of Eliza Carpenter, the deceased friend of Lucy's grandmother and Irene Bancroft, the mother of Lucy's high school crush, Owen. So when Owen, a former San Francisco cop, returns after an on-the-job injury forces him into retirement at 35, Lucy is thrilled. With Irene suffering from early-onset Alzheimer's in a home, Owen takes up residence in the parsonage next to the Book Spire, a deconsecrated church turned book store that Lucy owns. Not surprisingly, a romance develops. Then, while helping Owen with his mother's belongings, Lucy discovers a valuable cache of Eliza Carpenter's patterns and papers, prompting her to write a biography of Eliza. Things come to a dramatic and contrived head when Owen's mother flees the home and ends up in an abandoned lighthouse, where Owen's injury forces Lucy into action. Herron's sweet, comforting tale comes with a built-in surprise: the knitted pattern for Ruby's Bookstore Sweater is included in the back. (Mar.)
Library Journal
In her engaging sequel to How To Knit a Love Song, Herron revisits the community of Cypress Hollow and its familiar faces as well as new characters who are as entertaining as they are complicated. When Owen Bancroft, a man with an unhappy childhood, a tarnished police career, and a mother suffering from Alzheimer's, returns to town, he isn't expecting to be captivated by bookstore owner and compulsive knitter Lucy Harrison. Quite unexpectedly, the two find themselves working frantically to rescue a car accident victim. It isn't a surprise that the pair quickly discover they are physically attracted to each other, and they rather timidly begin a sweet romantic relationship with more than its share of difficulties. Knitting love and lore play a major part here; each chapter opens with a knitting quote, and the author's love of the craft shines through with an intensity that only adds to the plot. Even nonknitters might be intrigued enough to pick up a pair of needles as they turn pages. VERDICT Herron's second novel will earn her a well-deserved place in the ever-expanding knit-chick lit genre. Patrons who in the past have clamored for the novels of Debbie Macomber, Kate Jacobs, or Gil McNeil will definitely find this a good read.—Margaret Hanes, Civic Ctr. Lib., Warren, MI
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061841316
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Series: Cypress Hollow Yarn Series , #2
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 1,408,167
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Rachael Herron has been knitting since she was five years old. She writes the popular website Yarnagogo.com and lives in Oakland, California.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 27 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(21)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 29, 2011

    Simply Fabulous - A Must Read!

    The second book in the Cypress Hollow series, this book is even better than the first. Loved yarn legend Eliza Carpenter's little notes of wisdom at the beginning of each chapter, so much so, I found myself using her quotes on my facebook page. Couldn't wait for the bookstore to open so I downloaded the book on my e-reader and then rushed to the bookstore for a paperback book for my collection. I'm not normally a romance reader, however, this series is the exception because the characters come alive with each turning of the page. Makes me wonder if West Coast men are really like this and if so, why am i still on the East Coast?!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 28, 2011

    Highly recommended

    I have read both books so far; I enjoyed them very much. I just wish Rachael could write faster!! It is a romance novel without the heaving breasts, etc. which I hate. When I find an author who can write so I can read without nausea, I am SOLD! Best wishes, Rachael. Keep it up.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Lots to love

    Rachael has done it again - a plot where all along I thought I knew what was coming, then *pow* I was wrong. If you think this is yet another predictable knitting romance, think again.

    The characters are human, with good and bad moments, and the situations are very believable. I love the knitting content, of course, but the story drew me in.

    I will admit there were a few moments on the plane I wished my Nook screen wasn't as easily readable as it is, but I found the more *cough*romantic*cough* parts well written and not, well, syrupy, crass, or gaggifying. It's hard to write a good sex scene!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    This Book Has It All!

    Rachael Herron's latest - which I felt as though I'd been waiting for FOREVER - has it all: Sexy characters, great dialogue, a welcoming bookstore, a neighborhood bar and - best of all - knitting as part of folks' everyday lives. Every time I read one of Herron's books, I learn something new. With the first book, I learned about ranching. This time, I learned about EMTs and small business ownership. Nice little side stories, with more interesting characters, that enhanced the main storyline. This is a fabulous romance (I'm not reviewing that, since others have already done so here, much better than I would) with wonderful people who are warm, funny, kind, conflicted - much like most of us on our better days. I loved this book - and have already bought a second copy for my cousin, as a birthday gift. Can't wait for book number 3!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 10, 2011

    Wonderful, warm hearted read!

    Just finished and I'm sorry it's over! Wonderful story, character and knitting pattern! Looking forward to book three of Cypress Hollow, hopefully not too long! If you haven't read the Cypress Hollow series you are missing out.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2012

    Just as good as the first in the series!

    Rachael Herron does not disappoint her readers as we return to Cypress Hollow. I laughed many times as I read about the comings and goings of characters (new and old). Looking forward to more books from Rachael!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2011

    Finally, a return to Cypress Hollow!

    I love Rachel Herron! Once again, she's written a captivating story with characters that leap off the page and into your heart. Reading "How to Knit a Heart Back Home" felt like visiting a favorite destination: I got to visit with old friends and meet new favorites along the way. Her stories are fun and funny and juicy and once again, I couldn't put it down. I cannot wait to see what she brings us next!!

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  • Posted March 1, 2011

    That rare sequel that is even better than the first book!

    Rachael Herron has done it again -- and even better than the first time! The characters are very believable, and make you want to root for them. Who could resist the tried-and-true good girl/bad boy romance? With more mystery, and less suspense, How to Knit a Heart Back Home is even more to my liking than How to Knit a Love Song. And the HUMOR -- Lucy's mother reminds me of (Janet Evanovich's) Stephanie Plum's Grandma Mazur! I very much look forward to Rachael's third book in the series, due out this fall.

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  • Posted January 28, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Through the power of a love story, a meek knitter/bookworm converts the town bad boy into a romantic, leading man

    Do men find women who knit sexy? In today's looks-based culture, it seems more believable in the comforting world of fiction. Rachael Herron champions the idea in How to Knit a Heart Back Home. Lucy Harrison is the plain Jane heroine following in the footsteps of her late grandmother. From operating her financially strapped bookstore to habitually wearing her threadbare, hand-knitted sweater, Lucy willingly submerges her own identity in that of the deceased. Her life in the small coastal California town of Cypress Hollow is so quiet that the penultimate highlight of her romantic life occurred all the way back in high school with bad boy, Owen Bancroft. As the story begins, Owen is back home for the first time since their adolescent encounter. Needless to say, this sends Lucy into a tizzy.

    Herron depicts Owen's nostalgia as on par with Lucy's, yet throughout the narrative the concept rings false. First, Owen does not recognize Lucy when they see each other for the first time. He's had several romantic interludes with other women throughout the years, one even a few weeks before returning to Cypress Hollow. He certainly is not the romantic hero who has been pining away for Lucy all these years. Since his abrupt departure, he never made a single attempt to reconnect with her.

    As they begin to develop a relationship, the basis of it seems purely physical on Owen's side. Again and again, his attraction to Lucy is, for the most part, based on satisfying his desire. While this may be gratifying to Lucy to some extent, she is thrown into a constant state of upheaval as they begin to get reacquainted with each other. The further Owen advances, the quicker she is to pull away, but not before he moves her another step closer to his ultimate fulfillment.

    The descriptive details relating to the amorous scenes are a tad on the cheesy side. They are more appropriate to a romance novel with a Fabio emblazoned cover than a love story with a knitting/literary theme. The frequent mention of prophylactics puts the book more on par with being a poster child for a STD awareness campaign. Herron even has Lucy's mother walk in on the couple while in the act. This cringe-worthy moment is the very antithesis of what any romance reader wants to uncover in a love story. It gets even worse when instead of bolting from the room, she tries to carry on a conversation with the amorously intertwined couple.

    The saving grace for knitters is wrapped up in the legendary status of Eliza Carpenter. The fictitious icon of knitters the world over has turned Cypress Hollow into a mecca for those wishing to click their needles in their idol's former place of residence. The drawing together of Lucy and Owen is based on the discovery of Eliza's unpublished patterns. The reason Owen is back is because of his guilt over his mother's dementia and having to place her in a nursing home. After selling Lucy boxes of his mother's old books, the valuable papers are uncovered. The opportunity to work together on the project forges their strengthening bond.

    However, when Owen begins to see Lucy as more of a person than an object, he becomes quite overbearing. He wants her to quit being a volunteer firefighter/EMT in order to ensure her safety. Being a former cop, he draws his gun on Lucy's brother mistaking him for a burglar. He even investigates her past by snooping through her private documents. Only by asserting herself does Lucy gain equal footing in the relationship.

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  • Posted January 23, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    This is a warm knitter romance

    In Cypress Hollow, California, thirtyish Book Spire bookstore owner Lucy Harrison volunteers as a fire brigade fighter. However, she is also a serial knitter who cherishes the work of famed late knitter Eliza Carpenter, who was a friend of Lucy's grandmother and of Alzheimer's victim Irene Bancroft.

    Irene's son retired SFPD police officer Owen returns home due a duty related injury. Lucy is euphoric as she loved unrequitedly Owen during their days together in high school. She hopes the second time is the charm as she considers How to Knit a Love Song. Adding to her delight is that he moves in next door to her bookstore. He is as attracted to her as her to him. Lucy helps him with his mother's items since Irene moved into an assisted living facility. Doing so enables Lucy to find a wealth of material on her idol and writes a biography. When Irene runs away from the home and moves into an unsteady shut down lighthouse, Lucy has to retrieve her as Owen's injury does not allow him to do so.

    This is a warm knitter romance in which Rachael Herron's love of the craft shines throughout the enjoyable story line. The Cypress Hollow cast makes for a fun time especially for the knitter crowd; though we civilians will appreciate the wonderful second chance at love prime plot and the loving lore of the craft. One last aside to Knitters: there is a wonderful end that in my opinion is worth a first look.

    Harriet Klausner

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