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Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite
"Crazy Quilt" by Paula Paul depicts the ambiguities of a recent cancer survivor. Flora Adams has recently undergone a mastectomy, radiation and chemotherapy and she needs to get back to her Texas roots in order to attempt to bring sanity to her tenuous hold on life. Her husband of twenty years is distant and unwilling to help facilitate Flora's healing. Instead, she turns to an unlikely support group: an old man dying of cancer, a former boyfriend, a teenage girl who has issues of her own, and a host of former classmates who have a heap of understanding about what a women needs.
Those who have previously read Paul's work know that she is a master at character development. She mentally gives birth to totally human men and women subjects and then develops them carefully and skillfully to adulthood. In doing so, she understands their thinking, feelings, behaviors and the totality of their being. With this kind of skill, you cannot resist yielding to the humaneness of the novel and you will be captivated much like the moth to the flame. This is so much more than a novel about a cancer survivor. It is a story of coming of age as a human being and a story of beginning to know the intricacies of personal need and how to meet those needs. It is a tale of chances and a story about closing doors and opening others. Paul has produced a story that will linger with the reader even long after closing the book.