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Josh Gary's grandmother's last words were “Finish my grandmother’s quilt.” The woman, Annabel McMurtry, chosen to quilt it with him can envision who wore the pieces and what happened. This results in two stories in one. Two couples in the same place, one in 1867 at the end of the Civil War and the resulting love affair of the quilters. Both couples try to save the dying town of Star. Helen, that Yankee woman, became one of the first female post masters, but she and the Rebel Colonel she married struggle to bring the town back to life by attacting business. The modern day couple are deterred in their efforts when the town is nearly destroyed by a tornado.
Anabelle’s hands were on the last piece at the end of the row. She lifted her hands and shook her head. Sheepishly, she looked up at Josh like she was coming out of a long sleep. “I did it again, didn’t I?”
“If you mean I lost you for a while, yes, you did it again. Anabelle you must be just grieving. Maybe you’d better stop doing that. I mean, the story is interesting and all that, but…”
“I can’t help it, Josh. It just comes. Don’t worry about me. So far I haven’t committed any crime nor hurt anyone. Doctors don’t have an answer for it, so just let it be, okay?”
Josh wasn’t so sure. He did worry, not so sure about all this woogie-woogie business. He’d never believed in it before. A sudden cold wind bristled through the room.
“See there,” Anabelle held up her hands to it. “I’m sure that’s Ms. Mildred’s approval for what happens.”
Josh pulled his shirt collar up around his neck. “Okay, if you say so,” he said in unconvinced agreement. “But promise me you won’t touch a new rolled section of the quilt unless I’m here with you.”
“I’ve got an idea. Let’s have Marie pack our lunch and let me take you to see some of my favorite places on the estate.”
“I ought to go help Ethel at the shop.”
“I heard you put in double overtime with your classes while I was gone. Take a break. Do you swim?”
“Yes, I love to swim.”
“Pack your swimsuit. I have to make a phone call and talk to Marie. Put on your sun screen and wear a hat. I plan to take you out in the sunshine. You’re going to see some of my all time secret hiding places.”
Anabelle went to her room to pack her swimsuit. She knew she ought not to give in to an afternoon with Josh. She shouldn’t be around him in a social situation. She didn’t half trust herself to be close to him. But swimming! She hadn’t been swimming in ages. The temptation was too great.
About an hour later, Josh answered the front door bell and came back into the kitchen with a set of keys dangling from one finger.
“Your chariot awaits,” he declared like an English servant, bowing at the waist.
Anabelle’s chariot turned out to be a large shiny-red, all-terrain four-wheeler. She did a double take and turned in dismay to Josh.
“Oh, Josh, I don’t know whether I’m up to this.”
“Oh come on, don’t be a stick in the mud.”
“I’ve never ridden on one of those.”
“Nothing to it. Later, I’ll even teach you to drive it. But until then, you just get on behind me and hang on. I promise not to hit too-o-o many bumps and I won’t go too-o-o fast,” he said with a tone of voice and a mischievous smirk that belied his words.
“Should I trust you? I’m not much of a bronc rider.”
“Trust me completely.” He stashed Marie’s picnic basket, their swim suits bundled in towels, an old blanket and a length of rope on the rack on the back of the machine. He straddled the seat, turned the key and started the motor, which roared to life.
She covered her ears to soften the motor’s noise.
“Come on. Don’t be a sissy. Climb on in back of me.”
She did, reluctantly. He took her arms and wrapped them around him. What have I gotten myself into? Riding astraddle, snuggled up to him, my arms around him! I was going to be distant and professional with him. What happened to my good intentions?
Josh didn’t follow the driveway or any road, but struck out cross-country.
“Promise you won’t go fast enough to blow off my hat, now.” Anabelle was still skeptical, afraid he might want to pull some antics with her.
“A car won’t go where I want to go and I don’t have a horse.”
After a few minutes, Anabelle relaxed enough to enjoy the scenery. East Texas in the middle of June was lovely. The woods were full of pink mimosa trees in full feathery blossom, all the trees and bushes a deep, dark green.
“My first favorite place is on the backside of the lake, a swimming hole.”
5 Stars! Contemporary/historical romance “In Catch A Falling Star, shortly before his grandmother’s death, Josh returns to his home town of Star. On her death bed, his grandmother had two requests: help Star and finish the heirloom quilt. He turns to Anabelle for help with the quilt. As Anabelle touched the pieces of used fabric, the life of Great Great Grandmother Helen came to life. The hardships of her life, determination, and love were all sewn into the quilt blocks. Josh began to realize that he was more than attracted to Anabelle; he was falling in love with her. Jan Minter has taken threads of the civil war era and threads of a contemporary romance and woven them together into an enchanting fable. I did notice that Catch A Falling Star stills needs more editing. The tale is well developed and caught my attention from the first chapter. The characters came to life and were important to me. As a quilter, I was fascinated with the crazy quilt and the way it held the history of Helen’s life. Fans of romance will enjoy Catch A Falling Star.– Reviewed by Reviewyourbook.com
Book Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
No. of Pages: 336
Paper Weight (lb): 14.0