Monday, March 26, 2018


Jodi Thomas is one of my favorite western authors. In fact, some of her books are on my keeper shelf. For the last few years, her books have been set in West Texas, which is where she lives. MORNINGS ON MAIN is set in East Texas, in the small town of Laurel Springs.

Jillian James is a wanderer. Except for two years at university, she has never lived in one place long enough to belong. Her father, who disappeared when he left her at university, would never reveal anything about her mother or why he moved so often. His motto was “pack nothing from the past, not even memories”. Because she has only a few scribbled notations of his, she chooses the first zip code he mentions to search for clues to her family.

When she looks for a job, Conrad Larady, mayor and newspaper owner, hires Jillian to work at his grandmother’s quilt shop, A Stitch In Time. Jillian warns him that she only plans to be in town for three months. He asks her to photograph and catalog each of the quilts in the shop before his grandmother’s Alzheimer’s means the stories are lost forever. Jillian enjoys hearing Eugenia relate the history of each quilt.

Before long, she and Conrad become friends. Jillian also meets Conrad’s teenage daughter Sunnie, who does not live up to her name. Sunnie loves Eugenia, though, and is very good with and to her. A Stitch In Time is central to the town and through her work there, Jillian meets many of the locals.

Conrad is amazed at how detailed Jillian’s quilt write-ups are and how clear her photographs. To help her, he submits several to large newspapers. Jillian has no plan to develop attachments, but she is growing closer to both Conrad and Eugenia.

As with each of Jodi Thomas’ books, this one has a sense of community. Like each of the small towns I’ve known, Laurel Springs is filled with quirky characters as well as those who are mainstream or average. I love the warm feeling produced by her small-town novels and this is no exception. Her words weave a wonderful mind picture.

This is the first of her new series. I’m eager to read the coming titles and learn more about the residents of Laurel Springs. This book deserves 5 stars. I was furnished an ARC of this book for an honest review, which this is.

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