Debbie Macomber is a name I’d seen prominently displayed on grocery store book displays through the years. Feeling in need for an easier, more popular read, but diligently cheap, I picked one up at a local used bookstore. The clerk described this book as a good introduction.
The Shop on Blossom Street is the story of a woman who opens a yarn shop and the three women who sign up for her beginning knitting class. Told through alternating chapters on each woman as their lives privately unfold, they inevitably become entwined through their growing friendships. Though each woman is fraught with problems and human challenges like traumatic childhoods, cancer, inability to conceive a baby, and the usual suburban marriage and family pressures, under the pen of Macomber I looked into their lives already knowing everything will turn out just fine.
There is a comforting feel of entertainment and a chance to see into the lives of others that does not threaten a desire for a happily ever after story where, if we’re lucky, there may be a sudden burst into a Rogers and Hammerstein song. The story keeps a steady clip, just like a row of good knitting, and follows known signposts of story points leading to exactly where everyone wants to go.
It’s nice to know a few stories turn out. When I next read a book by Emma Donoghue, Dostoevsky, or Margaret Atwood, I’ll remember Macomber’s four women are still sweetly humming, counting their stitches, and looking forward to their next lesson together. When I’m feeling blue maybe they’ll let me visit again.