Wynona Studios in Oregon City has been holding book-of-the-month meetings featuring books by author Debbie Macomber. For March it was Susannah’s Garden and for April it was Back on Blossom Street. No word on their web site on meetings during the summer, or in the future, but check back later.
It is an interesting idea, mixing literature with art or craft. Back in January there were numerous celebrations scheduled honoring the late Oregon poet William Stafford. At the event in Molalla, Oregon, participants were encouraged to bring an art or craft object inspired by his poetry.
The mix of art and craft for a book club takes various forms. Wynona Studios offers classes and support for those wanting to pursue knitting and crochet, so discussing Debbie Macomber’s friendship and knitting-themed books is an easy connection. A now disbanded club in Hillsboro “No Longer Meetings Lit on a Lark Book Club,” read books and created crafts around books on a variety of subjects, not necessarily craft-related. They included Fried Green Tomatoes, The Princess Bride and others.
Debbie Macomber has over 140 million copies of her books in print. Her heartwarming stories revolve around ordinary people in caring, close-knit neighborhoods. She appeals to regular women who love their families, maintain long-term friendships, and enjoy crafts. Most of her books are set in the Pacific Northwest, primarily Washington State, where she herself lives. The Blossom Street series is set in Seattle, and the Cedar Cove series in her home town of Port Orchard, Washington. Her books have been on the best-seller list and won numerous awards. In addition to her stories of small-town life and of women knitters, she has written a children’s book and a cookbook. One novel, Mrs. Miracle, became a made-for-tv movie for the Hallmark Channel.
Her first book for children concerns knitting. The Truly Terrible Horrible Sweater…That Grandma Knit, deals with a problem familiar to many, of coping with an unwanted gift from a loved one. Watch a video about this book here. Her Blossom Street series, set around a knitting shop, includes: The Shop on Blossom Street, A Good Yarn, Back on Blossom Street, and Summer on Blosson Street.
There are over 2,000 book clubs meeting in the Portland area, but very few devoted to the combination of literature and crafts. Should you wish to address this unfortunate shortage, reader’s guides for many of Debbie Macomber’s books are included on her web page.