Tucked away on a second story in Manhattan’s Upper West Side is a hidden gem, Walker & Daughter. This treasure trove of textiles is the result of years of hard work by Georgia Walker: knitwear designer, proprietress and single Mom to Dakota. Years ago, when James walked away during her pregnancy, Georgia wasn’t sure she’d make it. Thanks to the support of her mentor (and clerk) Anita, Georgia’s business has thrived and so has Dakota.
More than just a shop, Walker & Daughter is a haven for many of the customers and the result is The Friday Night Knitting Club, started by some of the regulars. As James returns wanting a larger role in his daughter’s life and an old “friend” from high school shows up, Georgia will need all the support these supportive knitters can provide.
The Friday Night Knitting Club, Kate Jacobs’ debut novel, while set within a knitting group really could be written in any setting. Superficially about knitting, in reality this is a novel about the importance of friendship and love. Georgia has closed herself off from the world and has focused everything into Dakota and making a success of her store. She has eliminated the possibility of getting hurt again, but she has also remained aloof from the friendship offered by customers and employees. Jacobs’ message is a universal truth - life will quickly pass you by if you turn your back on possibility.
Jacobs has cleverly divided her book into sections representative of the various stages of knitting projects that also tie into her unfolding novel. These sections are written as knitting instruction but are true to life: “You have to experiment to see what works. But there’s a similarity no matter the method: you either try or you don’t…Casting on is as much a leap of faith as technique.”
After a slow start, The Friday Night Knitting Club engage its readers in the unfolding life dramas of the knitting club members. However, readers expecting a superficial, happy novel of sisterhood should be prepared for some heart-wrenching moments as The Friday Night Knitting Club takes an unexpected turn.
Publication Date: January 18, 2007
tags: books book reviews knitting Kate Jacobs fiction