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Author Talk: Jennifer Chiaverini

1863 Monroe St
Madison, WI 53711
OVERVIEW

About the book

Summer Sullivan, the youngest founding member of Elm Creek Quilts, has spent the last two years pursuing a master’s degree in history at the University of Chicago. Her unexpected return home to the celebrated quilter’s retreat is met with delight but also concern from her mother, Gwen; her best friend, Sarah; master quilter Sylvia; and her other colleagues—and rightly so. Stymied by writer’s block, Summer hasn’t finished her thesis, and she can’t graduate until she does.

Elm Creek Manor offers respite while Summer struggles to meet her extended deadline. She finds welcome distraction in organizing an exhibit of antique quilts as a fundraiser to renovate Union Hall, the 1863 Greek Revival headquarters of the Waterford Historical Society. But Summer’s research uncovers startling facts about Waterford’s past, prompting unsettling questions about racism, economic injustice, and political corruption within their community, past and present.

As Summer’s work progresses, quilt lovers and history buffs praise the growing collection, but affronted local leaders demand that she remove all references to Waterford’s troubled history. As controversy threatens the exhibit’s success, Summer fears that her pursuit of the truth might cost the Waterford Historical Society their last chance to save Union Hall. Her only hope is to rally the quilting community to her cause.

The Museum of Lost Quilts is a warm and deeply moving story about the power of collective memory. With every fascinating quilt she studies, Summer finds her passion for history renewed—and discovers a promising new future for herself.

About the author

Jennifer Chiaverini is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-two novels in the Elm Creeks Quilts series plus more than a dozen standalone works of historical fiction, including the critically acclaimed Resistance Women, Switchboard Soldiers, and Canary Girls. A gifted quilter herself, she has also written seven pattern books and designed fabric collections inspired by her beloved series. She received an Outstanding Achievement Award from the Wisconsin Library Association for Resistance Women in 2020. In 2023, she was recognized by the WLA as a Notable Wisconsin Author for her significant contributions to the state's literary heritage. Chiaverini earned a BA from the University of Notre Dame and an MA in English Language and Literature from the University of Chicago. Along with her husband and two sons, she calls Madison, Wisconsin, home.

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