Thursday, June 10, 2010


Usually I don't like to read novels composed of letters, but Sandra Dallas pulled me right into this story with Alice's delightful, down-home narrative voice. Alice writes letters to her married sister Lizzie in Galena, IL., describing her life as a new bride on a farm in extreme southeastern Iowa.
After Alice and Charlie Bullock have been married only a year, the Civil War begins and Charlie volunteers, leaving pregnant Alice to cope with taciturn Mother Bullock. She survives by working hard and sewing quilts with other townswomen for Union solders.
The plot thickens when Lizzie has marital problems, unknown marauders raid the neighborhood, and Alice is suspected of murder after a body is found on their land.
Dallas carries the quilting motif by introducing each chapter with information about quilting designs and techniques of that era.
Of Dallas' books that I have read, TALLGRASS, ALICE'S TULIPS, or THE PERSIAN PICKLE CLUB, ALICE is my favorite.


  1. I've just noticed some of Dallas' books. I think I'll add this one to my list.

  2. Thanks, Sandra. I hope you enjoy Alice's Tulips as much as I did!

  3. I read Alice's Tulips many years ago and remember it well. It was a delightful historical novel and kept me interested because I am always fascinated by the travails and strengths of pioneer women. I have also read Dallas's Tallgrass (it was the Linn Area Reads selection in 2009), and enjoyed it very much. I was lucky enough to have the chance to enjoy dinner with Ms Dallas when she came for that program and it was delightful to meet her in person, and then to hear her discuss her writing at the program that followed. Thanks, paigeturner, for reminding me about Alice!