The Oysterville Sewing Circle

The Oysterville Sewing Circle

by Susan Wiggs

Paperback(Large Print)

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“Stitched together with love, this is a story just waiting for your favorite reading chair. With her signature style and skill, Susan Wiggs delivers an intricate patchwork of old wounds and new beginnings, romance and the healing power of friendship, wrapped in a lovely little community that’s hiding a few secrets of its own.”
   — Lisa Wingate, New York Times Bestselling author of Before We Were Yours

The #1 New York Times bestselling author brings us her most ambitious and provocative work yet—a searing and timely novel that explores the most volatile issue of our time—domestic violence.

At the break of dawn, Caroline Shelby rolls into Oysterville, Washington, a tiny hamlet at the edge of the raging Pacific.

She’s come home.

Home to a place she thought she’d left forever, home of her heart and memories, but not her future. Ten years ago, Caroline launched a career in the glamorous fashion world of Manhattan. But her success in New York imploded on a wave of scandal and tragedy, forcing her to flee to the only safe place she knows.

And in the backseat of Caroline’s car are two children who were orphaned in a single chilling moment—five-year-old Addie and six-year-old Flick. She’s now their legal guardian—a role she’s not sure she’s ready for.

But the Oysterville she left behind has changed. Her siblings have their own complicated lives and her aging parents are hoping to pass on their thriving seafood restaurant to the next generation. And there’s Will Jensen, a decorated Navy SEAL who’s also returned home after being wounded overseas. Will and Caroline were forever friends as children, with the promise of something more . . . until he fell in love with Sierra, Caroline’s best friend and the most beautiful girl in town. With her modeling jobs drying up, Sierra, too, is on the cusp of reinventing herself.

Caroline returns to her favorite place: the sewing shop owned by Mrs. Lindy Bloom, the woman who inspired her and taught her to sew. There she discovers that even in an idyllic beach town, there are women living with the deepest of secrets. Thus begins the Oysterville Sewing Circle—where women can join forces to support each other through the troubles they keep hidden.

Yet just as Caroline regains her creativity and fighting spirit, and the children begin to heal from their loss, an unexpected challenge tests her courage and her heart. This time, though, Caroline is not going to run away. She’s going to stand and fight for everything—and everyone—she loves.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062912329
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 08/13/2019
Edition description: Large Print
Pages: 576
Sales rank: 78,479
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Susan Wiggs's life is all about family, friends…and fiction. She lives at the water's edge on an island in Puget Sound, and in good weather, she commutes to her writers' group in a 21-foot motorboat. She’s been featured in the national media, including NPR, PRI, and USA Today, has given programs for the US Embassies in Buenos Aires and Montevideo, and is a popular speaker locally, nationally, internationally, and on the high seas.

From the very start, her writings have illuminated the everyday dramas of ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances. Her books celebrate the power of love, the timeless bonds of family and the fascinating nuances of human nature. Today, she is an international best-selling, award-winning author, with millions of copies of her books in print in numerous countries and languages. According to Publishers Weekly, Wiggs writes with "refreshingly honest emotion," and the Salem Statesman Journal adds that she is "one of our best observers of stories of the heart [who] knows how to capture emotion on virtually every page of every book." Booklist characterizes her books as "real and true and unforgettable."

Her novels have appeared in the #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller List, and have captured readers’ hearts around the globe with translations into more than 20 languages and 30 countries. She is a three-time winner of the RITA Award,. Her recent novel, The Apple Orchard, is currently being made into a film, and The Lakeshore Chronicles has been optioned for adaptation into a series.

The author is a former teacher, a Harvard graduate, an avid hiker, an amateur photographer, a good skier and terrible golfer, yet her favorite form of exercise is curling up with a good book. She lives on an island in Puget Sound, where she divides her time between sleeping and waking.

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The Oysterville Sewing Circle: A Novel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I received an arc copy of this book. Susan Wiggs combines the horrors and secrecy of domestic abuse and the unexpected complications of adoption in this story of family strength and perserverance of women supporting each other. The characters become very real and the story flows without repetitive descriptions. I recommend this book.
Anonymous 8 months ago
From the first sentence to the last. I cannot say enough about the characters, the plot and relevance to recent events. Courageous, wrenching, witty.
Anonymous 6 months ago
I loved this book. I wish I could give the book more than five stars
Anonymous 4 months ago
Loved it.
Anonymous 9 months ago
loved the story the charactors highly recommend it
Anonymous 7 months ago
Good story!
gaele 10 months ago
Caroline left the small coastal town of Oysterville to chase her dreams of being a designer, and has worked in New York for several years, now the ‘design assistant’ to a much more famous man. With her sixth entry in the ‘young up and coming’ designer contest, she finally hits on a winner and is excited to make her mark. Until her ‘boss’ steals her designs and everything falls apart. Just adding to that trouble, Caroline’s best friend and model, Angelique and her two children Flick and Addie have sought refuge in her tiny apartment. Angelique won’t speak of the bruises she’s got over her body, and when she’s discovered dead from an overdose, Caroline has no choice but to head home with the children, to keep them safe and start to find a new direction for her life. Throughout the devastation, Caroline only wants answers and opportunities: answers to who killed her friend, and why so many women are killed by abusive partners, and to reclaim her confidence in her designs. With Addie and Flick traumatized and unsure, she’s first providing them some security and family love – her whole family has stepped in to welcome and care for the children and Caroline – allowing them the chance to heal and grow. Adding to that burden is the reappearance in her life of her summer-crush / soulmate now married to her best friend. She’s determined that nothing will convince her to stick around, and a relationship isn’t in her cards – it’s all about Flick and Addie and her designs. And then, discovering the extent, even in her small town, of the women who have been abused, she starts a support group – a group that is making differences in support and in the lives of the women who attend. From starting her own small design business on line to getting noticed by the ‘big guns’, Caroline is building a life in Oysterville, and helping others to reclaim their own sense of purpose and dreams – all in a safe environment. Full of stories of abuse and hope, the struggles with parenting (especially when you aren’t expecting it) and the sweetness of the children’s acceptance, their open hearts and the loving way in which the community comes to support people and business alike – this is a story of redemption, hope and opportunity – with a healthy dose of ‘how to help’ thrown in. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
MJK108 7 months ago
The Oysterville Sewing Circle is a story with depth and emotion that depicts the quote “life is what happens to you when you’re making other plans” perfectly. Caroline Shelby, a young up and coming New York fashion designer, wakes up one day to find herself with a destroyed career and her best friend’s two children whom she unexpectedly has to raise. With few options left, Caroline heads for home in Oysterville, Washington, a small town perched on the edge of the ocean. Caroline is not a quitter. With inspiration and drive she begins to put her life back together with the help of family and friends. Not only does she begin to rebuild her new life, she reaches out to help other women who have been victims of harassment, abuse, and violence. Part of the rebuilding process involves dealing with Will Jensen, a close friend from her younger years. Complex and problematical, they work to find what the future will hold for them. This novel depicts the themes of courage, survival, and trust. The story also highlights the bonds women build when they stand up and support each other during difficult times, as well as the strength of familial bonds. The characters are real and dynamic. The book is an excellent read and one of the better books I have read this summer. Don’t miss it! This ARC copy was received from William Morrow and The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own Five stars! #TheOystervilleSewingCircle #NetGalley
Honolulubelle 9 months ago
Favorite Quotes: Since she had left home right out of high school, she had dutifully visited a few times at Christmas… That seemed to satisfy the family and also preserved her status as the official black sheep. Every family needed a pet, her brother Jackson used to joke. I’ve had my heart broken so many times, it’s all scar tissue… “Turns out my ‘perfect’ husband pulled the oldest trick in the book. He took up with an associate at the law firm, plotted a slick exit, and brought my life to a screeching halt. She’s awful, too— one of those phony Christians who claimed she was ‘saving herself for marriage.’” “I guess you should have asked whose marriage,” His eyes were as blue as her favorite color of gumball… As a general rule, she didn’t like boys. With two younger brothers, she was well aware of their shortcomings. Boys were noisy, and they smelled like hamsters, and they had an incomprehensible habit of wearing the same dirty shirt day in and day out until someone made them change. My Review: This was a slowly evolving, relatable, and thoughtfully written story in which every woman from most any culture will find something that resonates for her. While predominantly fitting the genre of women’s fiction, it could also be considered a second chance and small-town romance. The realistic storylines were easy to follow, highly assessable, relevant, and cast with a wide variety of unique and endearing yet flawed characters. The writing was engaging and easy to follow yet slyly emotive and stung my eye sockets several times. Susan Wiggs has earned a permanent spot on my list of favorite authors.
DragonNimbus 9 months ago
I read this book at the beginning of summer and apparently didn't hit send. My mistake because I loved this book! Susan Wiggs's latest novel, The Oysterville Sewing Circle, takes place on the Washington State coast in the town of Oysterville. Caroline Shelby is returning home in the wee hours of the morning after fleeing years ago to follow her dreams of being a fashion designer in New York. Things didn't work out as she planned. After several tragic incidents, she flees to the familiar accompanied by five-year-old Addie and six-year-old Flick who have recently lost their mother. Caroline is welcomed back with open arms into her delightful family - all of whom are involved with the family restaurant. She runs into Will Jensen, her first summer romance who married her best friend. Will is an ex-Navy Seal who was injured in the line of duty and has retired to the place where he was the happiest. Coaching at the local high school has him running into Caroline almost daily. Of course the kids adore him so Caroline is forced to overcome her awkwardness and befriend Will and his wife. In the process of settling in, Caroline reaquaints herself with her mentor and owner of the sewing shop, Lyndy Bloom. As their friendship grows, Caroline learns that Lyndy is the victim of spousal abuse, as are several more people in Oysterville, more then she ever thought possible. Caroline, with the help of her sisters and mother, start a support group for victims of domestic abuse so people who have suffered in silence can have a safe, caring place to talk and find support. Caroline soon finds herself happily settling in to small town life and is participating in the small community, with her children, in ways she never imagined. Things are going smoothly until a new threat appears from the east. This time she won't flee the town, but stand and fight for those she loves. This book was so much more than a small-town romance. Susan Wiggs has a lot to say and is very inspirational regarding those who suffer from domestic abuse. I haven't read many of her books but I'm putting her at the top of my to-read list! Thank you for the chance to read the ARC - I enjoyed the book and I know others will too.
bookchickdi 9 months ago
You don't need to know anything about sewing to appreciate Susan Wiggs' latest novel, The Oysterville Sewing Circle, as the sewing circle is not exactly what the name implies. Caroline Shelby is trying to make a name for herself as a designer, working in New York City for popular designer Mick Taylor. He has used many of her designs for his sucessful line, and Caroline is on the cusp of becoming famous herself as she is entered into a contest for new designers, and poised to win with her creative designs for pregnant women and new moms. Her new life takes a turn when Taylor steals her designs and then her best friend Angelique dies, leaving Caroline with two young children to care for. Caroline drives Flick, six years old, and Addie, five years old, across the country to her family home in Oysterville, Washington. Caroline's family takes them in, even though Caroline hasn't been close to them since she left town for New York ten years ago. Her mom and dad own a restaurant on the waterfront, and her two sisters and two brothers are all a part of the restaurant business. The first person Caroline runs into as she enters the town is the man she has loved since she was a young girl. Will and Caroline were best friends as children, and just as they were beginning to become something more than friends, beautiful Sierra moves into town and sets her sights on Will. Will, Caroline and Sierra were best friends, until Sierra and Will became a couple and a heartbroken Caroline stepped aside, never telling Will of her feelings. With Caroline back in town, they all resume their friendship, but things have changed. Caroline comes to love Addie and Flick, and has to decide whether to pursue legal guardianship of them. When she designs some cute outfits for them to go to their new school, the parents at the school love them and Caroline soon finds herself designing children's clothes. She also feels guilty about her friend's death, and wants to help women who are suffering from domestic violence- thus, The Oysterville Sewing Circle is born. With the help of her sisters and some friends, they create a safe space for women to come and share their stories and get help. Wiggs creates characters that are believeable and in this time of such discord in this country, it's wonderful to read a story about people who genuinely care for each other and root for each other to win. Even in the conflicts between characters, each one is a good person trying to be true to themselves. The difficult subject of domestic violence is handled with honesty and dignity, and it reminded me of Dorothea Benton Frank's The Hurricane Sisters, which also dealt with the subject. (My review is here.) I hope that Wiggs' returns to Oysterville again, as there are more stories to be told here; I'd like to know more about the Shelby siblings. I recommend The Oysterville Sewing Circle for anyone who likes a story of resilience and friendship.
SheTreadsSoftly 9 months ago
The Oysterville Sewing Circle by Susan Wiggs is a highly recommended heartwarming domestic drama. Caroline Shelby returns to Oysterville, Washington, a small town on the Pacific coast, after living in New York for ten years. After a career as a fashion designer/seamstress who was working her way up to some major recognition, her success collapses due to an unscrupulous employer and subsequent blackballing by the fashion industry. Caroline is struggling along, but when a tragedy occurs and she is suddenly the guardian of her best friends two children, five-year-old Addie and six-year-old Flick, she knows she needs to return home in order to take care of the children. She also needs help after being suddenly thrust into the role of mother to two grieving children. Caroline never thought she would return to the small town of Oysterville, but once there, she knows she made the right decision as she has the support available to help her raise her children. With her arrival is the complication that her childhood best friend, Will, is now living there with his wife, Sierra, another friend. Caroline never really got over her feelings for Will, but is able to set that aside. Caroline also reconnects with Mrs. Lindy Bloom. Lindy is the woman who inspired Caroline and taught her to sew at her sewing shop. What Caroline learns now, as an adult, is that Lindy was abused. This knowledge along with the stories of other women inspires Caroline to start the Oysterville Sewing Circle, a domestic violence support group and business where women can join together to encourage, support, and assist each other through the abuse and secrets they keep hidden. The writing is very good in The Oysterville Sewing Circle, a women's fiction domestic drama. The narrative alternates between the present and past. The past events cover both Caroline's time in NYC and her childhood in Oysterville. The NYC sections explain what happened to her and how she became the guardian to Flick and Addie. Her childhood backstory covers her friendship with Will and Sierra, and her fleeing to NYC. The chapters set in the present show how Caroline is adapting to motherhood and flourishing under her current circumstances. Wiggs has shown the way to integrate current social topics and concerns (illegal immigrants, domestic violence, MeToo movement, drug usage, unethical employers) seamlessly into a novel without throwing every controversial topic into one novel. Wiggs then subsequently handle the topics in a serious, sympathetic, and feasible manner. The characters are complex and react in a believable manner; they are full of clear abilities, faults, longings, secrets, and hidden strength. Caroline's ability to start up a business with talented people available to help her is a little farfetched, as is the love story. Some serious threads of the plot are summarized rather easily, but you sort of know right at the start what is going to happen. And you know what, it's all okay. It may be predictable, but there are some wonderful highlights and serious topics, all handled in an understandable and thoughtful style. This is a perfect choice to read for escapism and entertainment. Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of HarperCollins.
perriknows 9 months ago
Wow…this one was at some points a bit boring, then absolutely fabulous! I felt the flashbacks to childhood were a tedious and slow moving. I wanted to skip over them but thought there might be a point to going back over childhood friendships and issues. Then you get closer to the end and realize why you needed all the backstory! This book deals with so many difficult issues. Domestic Violence, unethical work practices, lost love, divorce, addiction, and choice. These are masterfully worked into the pages where we also find romance, a helping hand, family ties, healing, and justice. For Caroline, an idyllic childhood opens to a fairy tale opportunity that was lost so quickly. Work, wit, talent, and resilience help Caroline move forward when she feels like she’s a failure. For Will, his time as a young teen in Oysterville helps him realize what he wants in the future. Injury, loss of first career, and returning to Oysterville works for him, but his wife Sierra sees it as a step backwards. The Oysterville Sewing Circle is not a romance, but it is. It’s not about sewing, but it is about bringing together discarded pieces to make a whole. Susan Wiggs is usually an auto buy author for me, but I almost didn’t purchase it because of the cover! I’m so glad I decided to go with my enjoyment of her writing and get it. Not a 5-star read for me because I felt some of it dragged, but a solid 4.5-star read.
GratefulGrandma 9 months ago
The Oysterville Sewing Circle by Susan Wiggs was a wonderful story about Caroline Shelby, her life, her friends, her love, her family and her determination. Caroline never thought she would return to her childhood home of Oysterville to live and definitely not with two children. Growing up Caroline wanted to leave Oysterville, Washington to become a famous designer in New York. She was on her way, when her mentor and boss stole her clothing line and her best friend died from an overdose leaving behind two children. Caroline had been named their guardian. With her loss and the death of her friend had Caroline had no idea how to take care of a any child, so with the encouragement of her mother, Caroline was on her way back home. But returning home will mean she will have to face her past, both the good, and the bad. Given the size of the town it will be difficult to avoid running into Will Jensen, a friend from her childhood who broke her heart when he married her best friend, Sierra. This story is told in two timelines, the present and Caroline's life as a teenager. I enjoyed both timelines equally and enjoyed getting to know not only Caroline, but her family and friends. Caroline is a a great character. She is one of those women that could have given up with everything that has happened to her, but she digs down and finds that strength within and picks up her life, and makes it a success. It is not easy, there are bumps along the way, hurdles to overcome, but she does it, not just for herself, but for Flick and Addie. She is also someone who cares about others and begins a group to support women who are victims of Domestic Abuse. As we get to know Will, her best friend and secret crush from her youth, I want to slap him. He gave up a wonderful woman for her best friend who was a bit flighty and somewhat selfish, although if that had not happened, they would not be where they are now. The secondary characters, her family and friends, support and encourage her which adds to the story. I really enjoyed this book. It handles some heavy topics, primarily domestic abuse, in a way that is easy to take in and not feel overwhelmed by the message. It also deals with date rape as a form of domestic abuse as well as assault. This is a story for women, about women and about love, and not just following our passions, but finding them as well. It shows us that even when we think there is nothing left for us and we are doomed to live the life that we have been thrust into, that there is something else, other opportunities and people to help us if we have the strength and are willing to take the chance to move on. I definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy an empowering story of friendship and new beginnings. I listened to this book and enjoyed the narration by Khristine Hvam. She is a wonderful narrator and her performance added much to my enjoyment of the book. She gave voice to the various characters, especially Caroline and Will. The story flowed for me and I will definitely look for more books narrated by Khristine Hvam. The publisher, HarperAudio, generously provided me with a copy of this book upon request. The rating, ideas and opinions shared are my own.
sbart84 10 months ago
An amazing read dealing with hot topics of today. Caroline, had never expected to return to her hometown of Oysterville with two kids in tow. Life changes quickly when Caroline finds herself unemployed in the fashion industry in New York and a friend of hers ends up dead, leaving two little kids to Caroline. Caroline returns home to family and friends and starts up her new business in fashion design. She hires ladies who have gone through rough patches in their life's involving domestic abuse. That forms the Oysterville Sewing Circle, a wonderful support group. Her childhood best friend of summer vacations, Will has also returned home. Their friendship develops into much more. An amazing read that I had a hard time putting down. The story is told in present and past, loved the friendship of Will and Caroline. The topic of domestic abuse was told in a way, that brought tears to my eyes. This is a book that I highly recommend.
sandralb 10 months ago
Susan Wiggs is one of my go to writers. I have read 45 or more of her books. I love this authors voice. She will take you on an unforgettable journey with solid, beautiful storytelling. What makes this story so outstanding, it isn't what readers are expecting, but it will be what they need. I was a little concerned when I say the book was about domestic violence. But as always Ms. Wiggs does a wonderful job covering a sensitive subject. You will find yourself reading late into the night. You will not want to put it down. I received a complementary copy of this beautiful book from the Publisher through Goodreads. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
paulalala09 10 months ago
This novel is a compassionate and telling one about lost love, lost career, and new beginnings woven into a tapestry that includes the ravages on women of spousal abuse. It is uplifting many times, hard at others. Truly a heartfelt novel that is not to be missed. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
jbarr5 10 months ago
The Oysterville Sewing Circle by Susan Wiggs Starts out with listings of other works by the author which I think I've read them all and enjoyed. Dedication which I have no idea why but will find out by the time I've read this and a table of contents. Caroline arrives back in town and sees her old boyfriend with a bunch of guys running.....Love new words I'm learning and I know they won't be overused. She rushes to get the young boy, not her kids and then rushes back to young girl. Coach Jensen had held onto the young boy for her... Then we get to the story about when Caroline is in NY and she's in the middle of a fashion show-for Mick... Love hearing of the design world and the sewing parts of it, so interesting and recyclable using things others would've tossed away. Had tears come to my eyes when she learns on the runway that Mick's stolen her designs and used them for himself.... So realistic, up to date with undocumented pregnant model... Blacklisted and then her best friend who's pregnant moves in with her and the children There is so much to this story about love romance sewing helping others, handling anger, making it through difficult times, surviving and finding out the truth. Wow hits her when she finds out who really killed her friend, didn't see that coming but now the dedication makes sense to me. Proceeds from the sale of the book will go towards domestic abuse. Learned so many cool things reading this one-Krav Maga for one-maybe it'll help my grandson with his disease/illness. Note from the author, acknowledgements, about the author and publisher are also included at the end. Received this review copy from HarperCollins Publishers via William Morrow at NetGalley and this is my honest opinion.
Reader4102 10 months ago
This story features Caroline Shelby, a fashion designer in NYC, whose designs are stolen by the man she thought was her mentor. Because he was the better known designer and had some power, he was able to blackball her from the industry. When Caroline’s best friend Angelique, a fashion model, is found dead of an apparent overdose, Caroline who’d agreed to be Angelique’s children’s guardian, takes them in. With no career left to her in NYC, she and the kids drive across country to her hometown in Oysterville, WA. Caroline never had any desire to be a parent, has zero parenting skills, and acts on instinct and memories of growing up with her four siblings. She soon learns that Oysterville, like NYC, is no stranger to domestic violence, Caroline’s guilt about not knowing Angelique was in an abusive relationship grows. She wants to do something to help the survivors of domestic abuse in her small town – thus is born the Oysterville Sewing Circle. This a fast paced novel that tells the story of Caroline growing and learning to be both a mom and a success in life. Wiggs’ characters are well drawn, especially Caroline, Addie, and Flick. The plotline is unique as is the setting. There are times when Wiggs’ gets a little preachy about domestic violence, but they are far enough apart that the reader won’t start sighing heavily. While the reader is not party to the violence, Wiggs treads carefully with the topic. If you want a book that is hard to put down, is well written and moves along at a spritely pace, then this is the novel for you. You’ll want to put it near the top of your reading list. Thanks to William Morrow Publishing and Edelweiss for a free eARC.
CCholger 29 days ago
4.5 stars As much as I love this author, I just realized this is the first book I’ve read of hers that is not part of her Lakeshore Chronicles series. I have many of her stories on my TBR list, but haven’t gotten to them as of yet. I’ll have to remedy that. Susan Wiggs is such an insightful writer. Before I get started on the meat and potatoes of this review, I want to give a trigger warning. In case you don’t get what’s being laid down in the description of this book, this story deals with abuse. Different types of abuse, so I’m just giving a blanket warning to those sensitive to such subjects. That being said, the author handles these very touchy subjects with care and compassion. The reader learns some hard truths right along with the heroine Caroline. We get to see the subject of abuse from a lot of different sides and, hopefully, learn how to help those around us in the process. Do my first few paragraphs make this book seem dry and boring? Because it’s not. There is joy along with the sadness. There is a remembering of those feelings of young love and first love. Of heartbreak and healing. This story gives so much power to the women and doesn’t judge their circumstances or their choices. It is the perfect book for any time, but especially relevant in our current culture of strong women and holding people accountable for their actions. The main part of this story is Caroline’s. She was always the oddball of her family and even her small town. She was always loved and accepted, but just didn’t feel like she fit in. Of course, she took off to find her true bliss as soon as high school ended. And she did quite well for herself. Quite a few unforeseen situations change things for her in a big way and she ends up back in her small-town taking care of two young children when she never wanted kids or to live the small-town life. Turns out, her hopes and dreams have changed and are continuing to change. Which is a theme throughout this book for all the characters. What one wants and dreams of at 13 is different at 20 and alters again by 30, so on and so forth. And that’s okay. That’s life. It’s what’s beautiful about life and what is scary about life…change. A lot of Caroline’s story circles around Will. Beautiful, wonderful, kind, and thoughtful Will. Who is also totally clueless. Even as an adult, he can’t see what’s right in front of his face. Maybe that was a good thing in the past, but what about now? And, considering the place he is in his personal life, should it even matter? Then there is Caroline’s best childhood friend (other than Will), Sierra; who I never quite figured out. But what I love is that the author still didn’t judge, even this character who I wanted to dislike but couldn’t quite fully get there. I believe that was the author’s intent. (That’s just my own guess, but I like to think she knew what she was doing with this Sierra the whole time.) I refuse to believe that young teenage Sierra was so obtuse to not discern Caroline’s feelings during that day on the beach, when Caroline’s two best friends meet for the first time. This made her unlikeable to me. And, as Sierra said herself, it’s hard to like her overly much when she’s with the perfect man in which all of her actions are judged. Will doesn’t judge, but the small town does. The perfect citizen deserves a perfect mate, right? So I was on a yo-yo with this character. While there are many more characters, some of great impo
NJ1231 3 months ago
A wonderfully written story of a woman working hard for her dream, then having her world changed. By helping a friend, she gains more responsibility then she ever wanted. Returning home is her only option, but to her, that means failure. By helping others, she discovers she needs help herself. This amazing story starts in the present, but tells of a woman’s life, in flashback and today’s adjustments, and growth. At the last two chapters I turned off the TV and absorbed myself in her continuing fight for her career and her new family. Beautifully written in Susan Wiggs’ wonderful style.
Anonymous 9 months ago
Anonymous 9 months ago
This book rating hovers between a 3 and a 4. Chick lit yes, but it had a good deal more depth to it than the average chick lit. Parts of the story were presented very well, believable; other parts, not so much. Caroline is from Oysterville, Washington, the epitome of small town. Interested in fashion and designing from an early age, she is admitted to fashion school in New York. A talented designer, she sees her design collection stolen by someone she used to work for. Along the way, she becomes good friends with a top-notch fashion model. When the model dies, Caroline takes the model's children and flees to the only safe place she knows, back to Oysterville. As she learns more about her friend's death, and realizes it was domestic abuse, she starts a local group for abused women, calling it the Oysterville Sewing Circle. As the group grows, so does Caroline's design business, and she taps into many of the Sewing Circle members' skills and talents. Caroline's and Will's relationship rocks along. Friends since they were young, the relationship never seemed to move beyond friendship until Caroline arrives back home. Will is married to Sierra, Caroline's best friend, and Sierra is very unhappy in her marriage, as her career plans lead her to the big city. The Oysterville Sewing Circle provided enjoyable reading about life in a small town with a dash of big city thrown in for good measure.
Katie__B 10 months ago
3.5 stars This was my first Susan Wiggs novel and I liked this one enough to want to check out her other books. I appreciate her attempt at exploring some heavy subjects in this story however there were a few things in the book that I felt weren't developed to their potential. This has been a common thing with books I have read recently. Just because I know early on how it will probably end, I still need to feel like everything unfolds naturally rather than rushed or glossed over. Don't get me wrong though this was still a good read. The fashion world might be glamorous but it is also cutthroat, a fact Caroline Shelby is well aware of having worked in the industry for 10 years in New York City. She decides to return to her hometown of Oysterville, Washington not only because she is unemployed but also because she has recently become legal guardian of her deceased friend's children and she's going to need the help of her parents and siblings. But returning home will mean she will have to face her past, both the good, and the bad. Given the size of the town it will be difficult to avoid running into Will Jensen, a friend from her childhood who broke her heart when he married her best friend, Sierra. When Caroline decides to form a women's support group, she learns that she's not the only one with a deep secret. There's a lot of heavy subjects in the story like domestic violence, addiction, and sexual assault so I would take a pass on this one if you are just in the mood for a light and breezy read. Unfortunately because there was a lot of different things going on , I thought the story as a whole suffered because nothing felt fully developed. It's like the story would focus for while on the sewing circle, and then bounce to the whole love triangle thing, then briefly mention the kids. I feel like you get to the endpoint and it's not as entirely satisfying as you hoped because many parts of the story just felt glossed over. Keeping that in mind, I'm not saying this isn't a good book, rather because of these things, it didn't hit the great or awesome mark for me. Still recommend especially if you like books about women supporting other women. Thank you to the publisher for sending me an advance copy in exchange for a review!