Monday, 8 February 2016

"The Friday Night Knitting Club" by Kate Jacobs

This was the January choice for our library book club.  
Such a cozy, inviting cover.  
I had expected that it would be similar to Maeve Binchy's "A Week in Winter". That novel is about an inn, with people coming and going.  Everyone has a story and Maeve Binchy writes so well that I really enjoyed all the characters as well as the ambience of the inn.  It was a great winter read!
This novel had the same promise- an array of interesting characters and a cozy setting.
Georgia Walker, the single mother of Dakota, aged 12, operates a wool shop in New York City.  There was good description of the shop and you felt as though you were there with the customers, among the many colours and textures of wool.
Some of the customers bring in their knitting and a group develops, meeting on Friday nights.  As you become involved with each character, her story evolves.  And there is great variety in the characters- Anita is a 72-year-old widow, Darwin is a Chinese university student working on her thesis, Lucie is a single freelance writer who wants a baby, K. C. is an old friend of Georgia.  And then Kat arrives.  Kat had been Georgia's best friend in high school and they had promised to go to the same university.  When Georgia was offered a place in one of the better universities, she turned it down so that she could be with her friend.  But then the position was offered to Kat and she grabbed it, making Georgia bitter and angry.
In fact, Georgia was bitter about other things, such as James, the father of her daughter.  
This situation caused much discussion between my husband and myself.  
Here's the setting in the book:  Georgia had seen James in a bar, liked his looks and took him home.  Their relationship  was purely sexual.  When she got pregnant, James left.  He sent money but didn't see his daughter until she was 12.  Georgia had spent those twelve years bitter about having to raise a child by herself, concentrating on all the things she missed, whining, whining, whining.  She was so bitter that she wouldn't open the letters that James sent.
My husband, John, who also read this book, was sympathetic to Georgia's cause.  I was not.  I believe that a woman has to look after herself.   If she has sex with someone that she doesn't know, good luck!  James never signed up for a permanent relationship or a child.   And when he did realize that he wanted a relationship with his daughter, Georgia made it very tough for him- lots of sarcasm and cold shoulder.
The book had a lot of promise, but the writing just wasn't up to my expectations.  It was the author's first book and it sold well, so she followed with two more: "Knit Two" and "Comfort Food".
Here is another cover for this book.

The book club really did not like this book!  They thought it was boring and flat, more than likely meant for a T.V. movie.  Everyone felt disappointed and the book rated very low- 4 out of 10 stars was the average!  Wow!


  1. Thanks for posting this Betty. I read the first few sample pages on my Kindle and didn't feel its purchase would be worth my time or money. I'm glad to have that thought confirmed!

  2. I purchased this book two or three years ago based on the cover and title and like you had big expectations for it which I felt it didn't deliver. I didn't hate it though. I'd give it a 6.