Maybelle works at the shipyard, welding seams on ships--in repairs and in new builds. She lives at home with her mother while her husband is in Europe fighting in the war. When her mother dies unexpectedly, and her husband goes missing in action, Maybelle has to figure out how to carry on with her life, especially since she does not have any homemaking talents or inclinations. Cooking and sewing are as foreign to her as her welding is almost second nature. With the help of her best friend Doris, and some other girls at the plant, Maybelle stitches her life back together along with a quilt her mother started.
I love fiction that centers around World War II, and this book really gives a glimpse into the life here at home, the waiting to hear, the telegrams that almost always bring bad news, the rationing and shortages, and the entry of women into the work place in more fields than teaching, nursing, or secretarial work. The world changes drastically, and life has to change with it. I love how Joyce Magnin has pulled all of these facets of life together into a cohesive book that entertains and yet demonstrates the faith of the characters at a time when the world is turned on its head. Quilting is also a hobby near and dear to my heart, and Maybelle's difficulties with the sewing machine were comical because I've had the same difficulties, even though I sew a lot. Maybelle in Stitches kept me in stitches quite a bit. Five Stars, Two Thumbs Up, and your favorite quilt block pieced to perfection.