by Kate Jacobs
Meh. I didn't like this book and found it difficult to get through. I read it all, though, because my book group spontaneously chose it for this month's selection. As Jacobs' first novel, The Friday Night Knitting Club is about a yarn shop in New York City, its owner Georgia Walker and her daughter Dakota, Georgia's past friend Cat and ex-lover James, and the shop's various employees and customers. I liked the fact it tackled an interracial romance and the challenges of single motherhood.
But this is what I didn't like:
- Georgia Walker herself. Supposedly, she is a magnetic personality who people want to be with...but I found her to be a bitter complainer about her lot in life.
- Jacobs packed the novel with too many characters, about which we know very little. In particular, Peri, Darwin, KC, and Lucie...I didn't really like any of these characters and I didn't care what happened to any of them.
- In one scene in the book, a crazy young woman bursts into the shop shouting about Julia Roberts. Then she vanishes out of the plot. What purpose did she serve? It was completely nonsensical.
- I would have liked to know more about the most interesting characters--James, Anita, Marty, and Gran--but we got just the briefest of backgrounds.
- I found the plot with Cat to be tiresome and ridiculous. Would a young woman really betray her very best friend like that? And for all the bitterness Georgia carried, why did she never try to contact and confront her?
- Same with Georgia's relationship with James. I found it difficult to comprehend how she could carry around those two letters from James without ever opening them. Stupid. If he really loved her and wanted to be part of their lives, why didn't he try harder to get involved? And when he finally enters the scene, he appears to be perfect.
- And finally, Georgia gets cancer and dies. How predictable is that?