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In a cave in the Shenandoah National Park, two bodies are discovered, wrapped in the tattered remains of a lover's knot quilt.
In Washington, DC, Isaac Taylor inherits a nearly identical quilt from a grandmother whose name he never even knew.
After narrowly escaping death, newspaper journalist Kendra Taylor retreats to a cabin nestled in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley to heal and sort out her feelings about her troubled marriage. The land was bequeathed to her husband by a maternal grandmother he never knew, and the cabin has been abandoned for years.
As she is welcomed into the rural community of Toms Brook, Kendra becomes curious about an heirloom lover's knot quilt that is another piece of Isaac's unexplored past. The unusual quilt clearly has a story to tell, and Kendra is convinced that helping her husband connect with his roots might help him reconnect with her, as well.
As a passionate story of strength, loss and desperation unfolds, will the secrets of two quilts be revealed? And will the threads of an unraveling marriage be secured?
“For this third Shenandoah Album novel (after Wedding Ring), Richards stitches together the mystery of a family's past with the difficulties and moral dilemmas of the present for a story as intriguing as the quilt itself.”
“Not romance so much as a story about love and relationships, the third book in Emilie Richards’ ‘‘Shenandoah" series is the best yet, as it follows a wounded journalist on her road to emotional and physical recovery.”
“Richards has a pure and clear narrative voice, and this is a dazzling display of her skill with plotting. It's rather like a prose representation of a quilt: Colors and textures are pieced together with precision, with hidden layers of meaning beneath.”
—Romantic Times BOOKreviews
“When it comes to consistently intelligent, thoughtful and satisfying Women’s Fiction, it is difficult to find an author that can match her accomplishments.”
—The Romance Reader
When I began the Shenandoah Album series, I wanted the titles of traditional quilt blocks to suggest my stories. The theme of Lover’s Knot was clear from the start. A knot can be an impediment, something to untie or move beyond. But a knot can also secure two halves of a rope, and once secured the knot itself can be the strongest part.
All relationships have knots. It’s the way we untie them or even tie them tighter, that determines whether a relationship will continue.
Kendra Taylor was introduced in the second book of the Shenandoah Album series, Endless Chain. She was a journalist with tentative roots in Shenandoah County soil, and she was interested in knowing the community better. It became clear to me that her husband–whose name I didn’t yet know–was not as enthused about the area as she was. I liked Kendra immediately. She was searching for something elusive, in need of the warmth and friendship she found in Toms Brook. I wanted to know her story.
About the time I was imagining what Kendra might tell me, I stumbled across an article on the Depression-era eviction of a thousand people from the area we now know as the Shenandoah National Park. I suddenly understood so much more about Kendra, about her husband Isaac, about the little cabin Isaac inherited from a grandmother he never knew.
But there was still much more to discover. I visited the park, hiked the trails, read the historical record. And I imagined what it might be like to lose the view of those breathtaking mountains, looming over every moment of a lifetime.
Kendra and Isaac aren’t simple people, but in the end, the answers they find are simple enough. I hope you’ll enjoy their explorations as much as I did.