The story of an escaped slave named Joanna who was recaptured and ret'd to bondage. She stitched a meticulously detailed quilt which she hoped to use to find her way north once again and to find the son she had to leave behind.
She was scarred by a cruel Master who held an iron to her cheek forever marring her beauty.
This is an extremely well-written historical fiction account of the life of a slave in the 1850s and 1860s. Although I have read the other books in this series, this one easily stands alone, although it is a good companion to the Runaway Quilt by the same author. (The beginning and end may be a bit confusing to read if the other books in the series have not been read, but it is possible.)
Once Joanna's story begins, it tells of her life with her mother (her father being her mother's "owner"), how she was sold and put to work at age 5 taking care of a baby she could barely hold, how she was "rescued" by the cook who had seen her own children sold off, her being raped repeatedly by the manor owner, how she learned to prevent pregnancy, her horrific punishment for pushing him off once, running away, life after being caught, working as a spy for the Union while living in Charleston, and her eventual final escape. It is hard to put the book down.
This series by Jennifer Chiaverini has been around for quite a few years. Of course, quilting is featured as part of the plot line, but the family history of Sylvia Compton, owner of a quilting school at her family's home, is featured in most of the books. This one features a runaway slave who hid at the home back in the 1800's and what really happened to her.
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