Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Jennifer Chiaverini  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction Non-Fiction

Audience: Adult;

Born: 1969


-- Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/JenniferChiaveriniAuthor
-- Twitter -- https://mobile.twitter.com/jchiaverini
-- Jennifer Chiaverini on WorldCat -- http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=jennifer++chiaverini+


Illinois Connection

Chiaverini is a graduate of the University of Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Jennifer Chiaverini is a quilter and New York Times bestselling author. She is also a former writing instructor at Penn State and Edgewood College. Best known for writing the Elm Creek Quilts novels, Chiaverini also wrote four books of quilt patterns that were inspired by the novels and designs the Elm Creek Quilts fabric line from Red Rooster Fabrics. She currently resides in Madison, Wisconsin.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Quilter's Apprentice: A Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1416556990

Simon & Schuster. 2008

Jennifer Chiaverini’s bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series starts with The Quilter’s Apprentice, a timeless tale of family, friendship, and forgiveness as two women weave the disparate pieces of their lives into a bountiful and harmonious whole, and begin the legacy of the Elm Street Quilters.

When Sarah McClure and her husband, Matt, move to Waterford, Pennsylvania, she hopes to make a fresh start in the small college town. Unable to find a job both practical and fulfilling, she takes a temporary position at Elm Creek Manor helping its reclusive owner Sylvia Compson prepare her family estate for sale and after the death of her estranged sister. Sylvia is also a master quilter and, as part of Sarah’s compensation, offers to share the secrets of her creative gifts with the younger woman.

During their lessons, the intricate, varied threads of Sylvia’s life begin to emerge. It is the story of a young wife living through the hardships and agonies of the World War II home front of a family torn apart by jealousy and betrayal of misunderstanding, loss, and a tragedy that can never be undone. As the bond between them deepens, Sarah resolves to help Sylvia free herself from remembered sorrows and restore her life—and her home—to its former glory. In the process, she confronts painful truths about her own family, even as she creates new dreams for the future.

Just as the darker sections of a quilt can enhance the brighter ones, the mistakes of the past can strengthen understanding and lead the way to new beginnings. A powerful debut by a gifted storyteller, The Quilter’s Apprentice tells a timeless tale of family, friendship, and forgiveness as two women weave the disparate pieces of their lives into a bountiful and harmonious whole.

Round Robin: An Elm Creek Quilts Book (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1416593047

Simon & Schuster. 2009

Jennifer Chiaverini’s bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series began with The Quilter’s Apprentice and continues with Round Robin—the name for a quilt stitched by many hands in turn—a poignant story of friendship and loyalty.

The Cross-Country Quilters: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1439148910

Simon & Schuster. 2009

Readers of The Quilter’s Apprentice and Round Robin have been enchanted by Elm Creek Quilt Camp, where women gather each year for quilting, friendship, and fun. The third in the Elm Creek Quilts series introduces the Cross-Country Quilters, a group of far-flung friends who pledge to complete a “challenge quilt”—symbolic of each woman’s personal goals—in one year’s time.

These five women arrive at Elm Creek Manor hoping to find in their quilt lessons an escape from the problems they left at home. Julia, an aging starlet, has pinned her hopes to a plum role in a historical epic whose director is under the mistaken impression that Julia already knows how to quilt. Megan is a successful engineer who has won prizes for her miniature quilt designs. The one challenge she has yet to master is single motherhood. Donna, a mother of two, must hasten to teach her daughter independence and self-esteem—lessons she, too, must take to heart. Grace is a renowned curator of antique quilts, whose creative flair is waning for reasons she is unwilling to reveal—even to her closest friends. Vinnie, the senior member of the group, is a sunny soul with a tragic past. Her overwhelming desire is to bring happiness into the lives of those she loves.

Although the Cross-Country Quilters share a common creative goal, as the year goes by their bonds are tested by the demands of daily life. But despite differences in age, race, and background, the friends' love for quilting and affection for one another unite them in a patchwork of caring and acceptance. The quilt they make reminds them of an everlasting truth—friends may be separated by great distance, yet the strength of their bond can transcend any obstacle.

Elm Creek Quilts : Quilt Projects Inspired by the Elm Creek Quilts Novels
ISBN: 1571201777

C&T Publishing. 2002

12 quilt projects based on the bestselling Elm Creek Quilts novels.

The Runaway Quilt: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1451606095

Simon & Schuster. 2010

After learning of her family’s ties to the slaveholding South, Sylvia Compson scours her attic for clues and discovers a window into the world of her ancestors: the memoir of her great-grandfather’s spinster sister,

Gerda Bergstrom. Gerda’s memoir chronicles the founding of Elm Creek Manor and the tumultuous years when Hans, Anneke, and Gerda Bergstrom sheltered fugitive slaves within its walls, using quilts as a signal of sanctuary. But little did the staunchly abolitionist Gerda know that a traitor was among them, placing the Bergstroms in grave danger and leading to family discord, betrayal, and a secret held for generations.

With the help of the Elm Creek Quilters and clues hidden within antique quilts discovered in the manor’s attic, Sylvia stitches together the pieces of her past and decodes the true nature of the Bergstrom legacy.

The Quilter's Legacy: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1451606109

Simon & Schuster. 2011

From the New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker and the Elm Creek Quilts series comes a moving novel following a daughter’s search for her mother’s treasured heirlooms.

When precious heirloom quilts hand-stitched by her mother turn up missing from the attic of Elm Creek Manor, Sylvia Bergstrom Compson resolves to find them. From scant resources—journal entries, receipts, and her own fading memories—she pieces together clues, then queries quilting friends from around the world. When dozens of leads arrive via the Internet, Sylvia and her fiancé embark on a nationwide investigation of antique shops and quilt museums.

Sylvia’s quest leads her to unexpected places, where offers of assistance are not always what they seem. As the search continues, revelations surface about her mother, who died when Sylvia was only a child. As Sylvia recovers some of the missing quilts and accepts others as lost forever, she reflects on the woman her mother was, and mourns the woman she never knew. For every woman who has yearned to know the untold story of her mother’s life, and for every mother who has longed to be heard, The Quilter’s Legacy resonates with heartfelt honesty as it reveals what tenuous connections bind the generations, and celebrates the love that sustains them.

Return to Elm Creek: More Quilt Projects Inspired by the Elm Creek Quilts Novels
ISBN: 1571202692

C&T Publishing, Inc.. 2004

You Loved the Elm Creek Books - Now Make More of the Quilts They Inspired! Get reacquainted with your favorite characters from the Elm Creek Quilts series while browsing through a dozen brand-new quilts designed by best-selling author Jennifer Chiaverini. • 12 all-new quilt projects inspired by the Elm Creek Quilts novels, including 3 from Jennifer's book, The Master Quilter • Read about new and familiar characters with each quilt pattern • Projects for everyone - easy or more challenging, piecing or appliqué • Jennifer shares her insider's view of a cross-country book tour

The Master Quilter (Elm Creek Quilts Series #6)
ISBN: 0452284686

Plume. 2005

This ninth Elm Creek Quilts novel continues the series with a tribute to matriarch Sylvia Compson, who surprised her fellow quilters by marrying her longtime sweetheart on a recent holiday. Eager to honor their favorite Master Quilter, the Elm Creek Quilters hasten to stitch a bridal quilt for the newlyweds. Until the time comes to unveil the surprise gift, Sylvia will be the one in the dark.

Such little white lies seem harmless enough. But the quilting retreat at Elm Creek Manor thrives on women sharing their creativity, their challenges and their dreams. Somehow, in their race to commemorate in the bridal quilt all they hold dear about Sylvia’s wisdom, skill and devotion, her fellow quilters forget to give honesty its pride of place.

Just when it seems that the women have everything to celebrate, forces conspire to threaten their happiness and prosperity. Two among them falter in their personal relationships, while another suffers financial problems. As still two others weigh the comfort of the present against dreams of a future far from Elm Creek Manor, closely guarded secrets strain the bonds of friendship with those who may be left behind.

The Sugar Camp Quilt (Elm Creek Quilts Series #7)
ISBN: 0743260198

Simon & Schuster. 2006

History is thick with secrets in The Sugar Camp Quilt, seventh in the beloved Elm Creek Quilts series from bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini. Set in Creek's Crossing, Pennsylvania, in the years leading up to the Civil War, the novel follows Dorothea Granger's passage from innocence to wisdom against the harrowing backdrop of the American struggle over slavery. She discovers that a quilt she has stitched for her uncle Jacob with five unusual patterns of his own design contains hidden clues to guide runaway slaves along the Underground Railroad. The heroic journey she undertakes leads to revelations about her own courage and resourcefulness -- newfound qualities that may win her the heart of the best man she has ever known.

The Christmas Quilt / The New Year's Quilt (Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 143910025X

Pocket Books. 2008

When Christmas Eve comes to Elm Creek Manor, the tenor of the holiday is far from certain. Sylvia Bergstrom Compson, the Master Quilter, has her own reasons for preferring a quiet, even subdued, Christmas. Her young friend Sarah McClure, however, takes the opposite view and decides to deck the halls brightly. As she explores the trunks packed with Bergstrom family decorations that haven't been touched in more than fifty years, Sarah discovers a curious Christmas quilt. Begun in seasonal fabrics and patterns, the quilt remains unfinished.

Sylvia reveals that the handiwork spans several generations and a quartet of Bergstrom quilters -- her great aunt, her mother, her sister, and herself. As she examines the array of quilt blocks each family member contributed but never completed, memories of Christmases past emerge.

At Elm Creek Manor, Christmas began as a celebration of simple virtues -- joy and hope buoyed by the spirit of giving. As each successive generation of Bergstroms lived through its unique trials -- the antebellum era, the Great Depression, World War II -- tradition offered sustenance even during the most difficult times. For Sylvia, who is coping with the modern problem of family dispersed, estranged, or even forgotten, reconciliation with her personal history may prove as elusive as piecing the Christmas Quilt.

Elm Creek Manor is full of secrets, from a Christmas tree with unusual properties to the sublime Bergstrom strudel recipe. Sylvia's tales at first seem to inform her family legacy but ultimately illuminate far more, from the importance of women's art to its place in commemorating our shared experience, at Christmastime and in every season.

Circle of Quilters (Elm Creek Quilts Series #9)
ISBN: 074326021X

Simon & Schuster. 2007

The ninth book in Jennifer Chiaverini's bestselling series—when two of Elm Creek Quilts’ founding members decide to leave the fold, who can possibly take their place in the circle of quilters?

When Elm Creek Quilts announces openings for two new teachers, quilters everywhere are vying to land the prestigious post. The impending departure of two founding members means untold changes for the Elm Creek Quilters. As they begin the interview process, a single question emerges: Who can possibly take the place of beloved colleagues and friends?

"We must evaluate all of the applicants' qualities," advises Master Quilter Sylvia Compson. "Our choice will say as much about us as it says about who we decide to hire." Who merits a place among the circle of quilters? Will it be Maggie, whose love of history shines through in all her projects Anna, whose food-themed quilts are wonderfully innovative Russ, the male quilter with a completely original style Karen, a novice teacher whose gifts for language complement her deep understanding of the quilters' mission or Gretchen, the soulful veteran whose craft is inspired by quilting tradition?

The Quilter's Homecoming (Elm Creek Quilts Series, Book 10)
ISBN: 0743260236

Simon & Schuster. 2008

A Roaring Twenties tale of boom and bust unfolds as young bride Elizabeth Bergstrom Nelson sets off with her husband, Henry, from her family home of Elm Creek Manor in Pennsylvania to start a new life in the unfamiliar terrain of southern California. Expecting to assume ownership of Triumph Ranch, the couple instead learns that their deed is a fake, and that they must work for the rightful proprietors to earn their keep. Resourceful Elizabeth trades her trousseau—including the fine quilts stitched by her Bergstrom relatives—for the practical goods the Nelsons need to survive, and finds friendship with California native Rosa Diaz Barclay. When Elizabeth discovers a mysterious cache of quilts made by a member of the Diaz family that reveals a misplaced legacy of love, land, and ancestral ties, it becomes clear that only by stitching the rift between the past and the future can the inhabitants of Triumph Ranch hope to live in peace alongside history.

More Elm Creek Quilts: 30+ Traditional Blocks 11 Projects Favorite Character Sketches
ISBN: 1571204512

C&T Publishing. 2008

11 timeless quilts inspired by the author's best-selling novels, with more than 30 blocks and favorite character sketches. Read about your favorite Elm Creek Quilts novels The Sugar Camp Quilt, Circle of Quilters, The Quilter's Homecoming, and The New Year's Quilt. Complete instructions and full-sized patterns for each quilt, plus a chapter on quilting basics.

Sylvia's Bridal Sampler from Elm Creek Q: The True Story Behind the Quilt 140 Traditional Blocks
ISBN: 1571206558

C&T Publishing. 2009

Create your own authentic version of the bridal sampler quilt made for Sylvia Compson in the best-selling novel The Master Quilter.

The Aloha Quilt: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1416533192

Simon & Schuster. 2011

Jennifer Chiaverini, the New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker and Fates and Traitors, continues her popular Elm Creek Quilts series set at a quilter's retreat in scenic Hawaii.

Another season of Elm Creek Quilt Camp has come to a close, and Bonnie Markham faces a bleak and lonely winter ahead, with her quilt shop out of business and her divorce looming. A welcome escape comes when Claire, a beloved college friend, unexpectedly invites her to Maui to help launch an exciting new business: a quilter’s retreat set at a bed and breakfast amid the vibrant colors and balmy breezes of the Hawaiian Islands. Soon Bonnie finds herself looking out on sparkling waters and banyan trees, planning quilting courses, and learning the history and intricacies of Hawaiian quilting, all the while helping Claire run the inn.

As Bonnie’s adventure unfolds, it quickly becomes clear that Claire’s new business isn’t the only excitement in store for her. Her cheating, soon-to-be ex-husband decides he wants her stake in Elm Creek Quilts, which threatens not only her financial well-being but her dearest friendships as well. Luckily she has the artistic challenge of creating her own unique Hawaiian quilt pattern to distract her—and new friends like Hinano Paoa, owner of the Nä Mele Hawai‘i Music Shop, who introduces Bonnie to the fascinating traditions of Hawaiian culture and reminds her that love can be found when and where you least expect it.

The Winding Ways Quilt (Elm Creek Quilts Series #12)
ISBN: 141653315X

Simon & Schuster. 2008

Jennifer Chiaverini's bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series continues with The Winding Ways Quilt, in which the arrival of newcomers into the circle of quilters heralds unexpected journeys down pathways near and far.

Quilters have flocked to Elm Creek Manor to learn from Master Quilter Sylvia Compson and her expert colleagues. There's Sarah, Sylvia's onetime apprentice who's paired her quilting accomplishments with a mind for running the business of Elm Creek Quilts Agnes, who has a gift for appliqué Gwen, who stitches innovative art quilts Diane, a whiz at the technicalities of quick-piecing and Bonnie, with her encyclopedic knowledge of folk art patterns. But with Judy and Summer, two other founding members of the Elm Creek Quilters, departing to pursue other opportunities, will the new teachers be able to fill in the gaps created by the loss of their expertise—and more important, their friendship?

"When I think of all the different paths I could have followed in my life, all the twists and turns that could have led me anywhere," muses incoming teacher Gretchen, "it's something of a miracle that I ended up here, surrounded by loving friends."

But what of friends departed? As Sylvia contemplates a tribute to the partnership of the Elm Creek Quilters, she is reminded of a traditional quilt pattern whose curved pieces symbolize a journey. Winding Ways, a mosaic of overlapping circles and intertwining curves, would capture the spirit of their friendship at the moment of its transformation.

Will Sylvia's choice inspire the founding members to remember that each is a unique part of a magnificent whole? Will the newcomers find ways to contribute, and to earn their place? The Winding Ways Quilt considers the complicated, often hidden meanings of presence and absence, and what change can mean for those who have come to rely upon one another.

The Quilter's Kitchen: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel with Recipes (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1416583297

Simon & Schuster. 2008

Anna Del Maso had known that she wanted to be a chef since she was in the seventh grade. "Somehow everything in my life ends up being about food," she realizes, as she begins the latest of her food-themed quilts. Her twin passions have converged in a brand-new position as head chef for Elm Creek Quilts, Waterford, Pennsylvania's popular quilting retreat.

As she joins the circle of quilters at historic Elm Creek Manor, Anna is eager to preserve the manor's culinary heritage, dating to 1858, while also celebrating the new favorites of their many guests. Yet as Master Quilter Sylvia Bergstrom Compson well knows, the manor's kitchen, last updated in the 1940s, can't create food that compares to the state-of-the-art quilting instruction for which Elm Creek Quilts is renowned.

A full renovation of the kitchen must be completed by the start of the new camp season. Though the task is daunting, Anna is assured in her belief that "A kitchen is the heart of a home." As she and Sylvia begin to dismantle the old to make way for the new, Sylvia's reminiscences remind them both of just how many of the manor's traditions have involved food and celebrations. Whether the feast is one of the holiday menus prepared and enjoyed by generations of Bergstroms, or one of the Welcome Banquets and Farewell Breakfasts that have become hallmarks of Elm Creek Quilt Camp, there is a story for every recipe, and a recipe for every story.

The Quilter's Kitchen follows Anna's flavorful explorations of the kitchens of Elm Creek Manor, past and present. As she records beloved recipes and creates original dishes seasoned with love, she discovers anew how the gifts of the table gather friends and family ever closer.

The Lost Quilter: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1416533176

Simon & Schuster. 2010

Master Quilter Sylvia Bergstrom Compson treasures an antique quilt called by three names -- Birds in the Air, after its pattern the Runaway Quilt, after the woman who sewed it and the Elm Creek Quilt, after the place to which its maker longed to return. That quilter was Joanna, a fugitive slave who traveled by the Underground Railroad to reach safe haven in 1859 at Elm Creek Farm.

Though Joanna's freedom proved short-lived -- she was forcibly returned by slave catchers to Josiah Chester's plantation in Virginia -- she left the Bergstrom family a most precious gift, her son. Hans and Anneke Bergstrom, along with maiden aunt Gerda, raised the boy as their own, and the secret of his identity died with their generation. Now it falls to Sylvia -- drawing upon Gerda's diary and Joanna's quilt -- to connect Joanna's past to present-day Elm Creek Manor.

Just as Joanna could not have foreseen that, generations later, her quilt would become the subject of so much speculation and wonder, Sylvia and her friends never could have imagined the events Joanna witnessed in her lifetime. Punished for her escape by being sold off to her master's brother in Edisto Island, South Carolina, Joanna grieves over the loss of her son and resolves to run again, to reunite with him someday in the free North. Farther south than she has ever been, she nevertheless finds allies, friends, and even love in the slave quarter of Oak Grove, a cotton plantation where her skill with needle and thread soon becomes highly prized.

Through hardship and deprivation, Joanna dreams of freedom and returning to Elm Creek Farm. Determined to remember each landmark on the route north, Joanna pieces a quilt of scraps left over from the household sewing, concealing clues within the meticulous stitches. Later, in service as a seamstress to the new bride of a Confederate officer, Joanna moves on to Charleston, where secrets she keeps will affect the fate of a nation, and her abilities and courage enable her to aid the country and the people she loves most.

The knowledge that scraps can be pieced and sewn into simple lines -- beautiful both in and of themselves and also for what they represent and what they can accomplish -- carries Joanna through dark days. Sustaining herself and her family through ingenuity and art during the Civil War and into Reconstruction, Joanna leaves behind a remarkable artistic legacy that, at last, allows Sylvia to discover the fate of the long-lost quilter.

A Quilter's Holiday: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel (The Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 1451658214

Simon & Schuster. 2011

The Elm Creek Quilters are home for the holidays in this heartwarming Christmas story from New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini.

For the Elm Creek Quilters, the day after Thanksgiving marks the start of the quilting season, a time to gather at Elm Creek Manor and spend the day stitching holiday gifts for loved ones. This year, in keeping with the season's spirit of gratitude, Master Quilter Sylvia Bergstrom Compson Cooper is eager to revive a cherished family tradition. A recent remodeling of the manor's kitchen unearthed a cornucopia that once served as the centerpiece of the Bergstrom family's holiday table. Into it, each Bergstrom would place an object that symbolized something he or she was especially thankful for that year. On this quilter's holiday, Sylvia has invited her friends to continue the tradition by sewing quilt blocks that represent their thankfulness and gratitude.

As each quilter explains the significance of her carefully chosen block, stories of love and longing for family and friends emerge—feelings that are also expressed in the gifts they work on throughout the day.

As an early winter storm blankets Elm Creek Manor in heavy snow, the quilters find new meanings in their best-loved traditions and new reasons to be thankful. A Quilter's Holiday is a story of holiday spirit, in its truest, most generous sense.

Traditions from Elm Creek Quilts: 13 Quilts Projects to Piece and Applique
ISBN: 1607054027

C&T Publishing. 2011

Fans of Jennifer Chiaverini's Elm Creek Quilts series can now stitch up the quilts inspired by her last six novels. The best-selling author shares her inspiration for each of the quilts featured in The Winding Ways Quilt, The Quilter's Kitchen, The Lost Quilter, A Quilter's Holiday, The Aloha Quilt, The Union Quilters, and The Wedding Quilt. Create a bit of Elm Creek for your home!

The Union Quilters: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel
ISBN: 0452297605

Dutton. 2012

"Chiaverini has once again written an intense and beautiful book-so much so that readers will almost hear the hollow echo of the fife and drum as they immerse themselves in every compelling page . . . Truly unforgettable."
-BookPage

In 1862, the men of Water's Ford, Pennsylvania, rally to President Lincoln's call while Dorothea Granger marshals her friends to "wield their needles for the Union." Meanwhile, Anneke Bergstrom hides the shame she feels for her husband's pacifism gifted writer Gerda Bergstrom takes on local Southern sympathizers in the pages of the Water's Ford Register and Constance Wright struggles to help her husband gain entry to the Union Army-despite the color of his skin. As the women work, hope, and pray, the men they love confront loneliness, boredom, and danger on the battlefield. But the women of the sewing circle also forge a new independence that will forever alter the patchwork of life in the Elm Creek Valley.

The Wedding Quilt: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel
ISBN: 0452298490

Dutton. 2012

The New York Times bestseller celebrates one of America’s most romantic and enduring traditions

As her daughter’s wedding day approaches, Sarah McClure reflects upon Elm Creek brides past and present—the traditions they honored, the legacies they bequeathed, the wedding quilts that contain their stories in every stitch.

Unexpectedly, Caroline confides, “I wish I had a wedding quilt, one I made myself.” Sarah yearns to grant her fervent wish, but even the most talented novice would be daunted by the task of stitching, mere days before the wedding, a worthy symbol of the couple's bonds of love, commitment, trust, and hope for the future. Turning to her cherished friends, the Elm Creek Quilters, Sarah asks them to pool their creative gifts. As the women stitch, their memories render a vivid pastiche of family, friendship, and love in all its varieties.

The Wedding Quilt: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel
ISBN: 0452298490

Dutton. 2012

The New York Times bestseller celebrates one of America’s most romantic and enduring traditions

As her daughter’s wedding day approaches, Sarah McClure reflects upon Elm Creek brides past and present—the traditions they honored, the legacies they bequeathed, the wedding quilts that contain their stories in every stitch.

Unexpectedly, Caroline confides, “I wish I had a wedding quilt, one I made myself.” Sarah yearns to grant her fervent wish, but even the most talented novice would be daunted by the task of stitching, mere days before the wedding, a worthy symbol of the couple's bonds of love, commitment, trust, and hope for the future. Turning to her cherished friends, the Elm Creek Quilters, Sarah asks them to pool their creative gifts. As the women stitch, their memories render a vivid pastiche of family, friendship, and love in all its varieties.

Sonoma Rose (Elm Creek Quilts)
ISBN: 0452298997

Dutton. 2013

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini returns with a Prohibition-era novel about one woman’s journey to save her family—and herself

With the nation in the throes of Prohibition, Rosa Diaz Barclay unwittingly discovers that her husband, John, has given over the duties of their Southern California rye farm in favor of armed bootlegging. Fearing the safety of her four beloved children, Rosa flees, with little more than a suitcase filled with John’s ill-gotten gains and her heirloom quilts. Accompanying her is Lars, a good but flawed man who is the mother of two of her children. Under assumed names, Lars and Rosa hire on at a Sonoma County vineyard, seeking not only refuge from danger, but convalescence for two of the children, who suffer from a mysterious wasting disease. The devotion of the Italian-American community to the craft of viticulture inspires Rosa to acquire a vineyard of her own, even as she discovers firsthand its inherent hardships and dangers winemakers face in such turbulent times.

The Giving Quilt: An Elm Creek Quilts Novel
ISBN: 0142180246

Dutton. 2013

Every stitch makes a difference in New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini’s artful, inspiring novel that imagines what good would come from practicing the holiday spirit each and every day of the year.

At Elm Creek Manor, the week after Thanksgiving is “Quiltsgiving,” a time to commence a season of generosity. From near and far, quilters and aspiring quilters—a librarian, a teacher, a college student, and a quilt-shop clerk among them—gather for a special winter session of quilt camp, to make quilts for Project Linus, a charitable organization dedicated to providing handmade quilts and blankets to children in need. Each quilter, ever mindful that many of her neighbors, friends, and family members are struggling through difficult times, pledges the strength of her creative gifts to alleviate their collective burden. So it happens that when the Quiltsgiving participants swap fabrics and trade techniques around the quilting circle, the warm, bright, beautiful quilts they piece are infused with love and comfort. So, too, are their personal stories, which collectively consider the strength of human connection and its rich rewards.

An Elm Creek Quilts Companion: New Fiction, Traditions, Quilts, and Favorite Moments from the Beloved Series
ISBN: 0142196703

Dutton. 2013

A beautiful keepsake volume to accompany the beloved New York Times bestselling series

Over the course of the bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series, readers have expressed a longing to visit Elm Creek Manor, meet the quilters themselves, and admire their beautiful creations. Jennifer Chiaverini’s An Elm Creek Quilts Companion is the next best thing to a guided tour. Inside, readers will discover a treasure trove of delights, including the Bergstrom family tree, character biographies, quilt block illustrations, full-color photographs of quilts featured in the novels, and “Behind the Scenes at Elm Creek Quilt Camp,” an exclusive short story inspired by questions from real readers. No Elm Creek Quilts fan will want to be without this indispensable guide to the cherished series.

Loyal Union Sampler from Elm Creek Quilts: 121 Traditional Blocks - Quilt Along with the Women of the Civil War
ISBN: 1607057654

C&T Publishing. 2013

Inspired by Jennifer Chiaverini's best-selling novel, The Union Quilters, this sampler quilt offers a treasure trove of traditional blocks sewn by the women of Elm Creek Valley to support their troops during the American Civil War. The book includes historical notes on the novel and photos of 9 Loyal Union Samplers made by Jennifer and other Elm Creek Quilts lovers from around the world. These blocks can be mixed and matched with blocks from Jennifer's wildly popular Elm Creek Quilts sampler, Sylvia's Bridal Sampler.

·121 traditional 6” quilt blocks
·Full-sized patterns for every block, plus instructions for assembling the quilt
·Start an Elm Creek Quilt club and feature a different block at each meeting

Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker
ISBN: 0525953612

Dutton. 2013

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini illuminates the extraordinary friendship between Mary Todd Lincoln and Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley, a former slave who won her freedom by the skill of her needle, and the friendship of the First Lady by her devotion.

In Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker, novelist Jennifer Chiaverini presents a stunning account of the friendship that blossomed between Mary Todd Lincoln and her seamstress, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Keckley, a former slave who gained her professional reputation in Washington, D.C. by outfitting the city’s elite. Keckley made history by sewing for First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln within the White House, a trusted witness to many private moments between the President and his wife, two of the most compelling figures in American history.

In March 1861, Mrs. Lincoln chose Keckley from among a number of applicants to be her personal “modiste,” responsible not only for creating the First Lady’s gowns, but also for dressing Mrs. Lincoln in the beautiful attire Keckley had fashioned. The relationship between the two women quickly evolved, as Keckley was drawn into the intimate life of the Lincoln family, supporting Mary Todd Lincoln in the loss of first her son, and then her husband to the assassination that stunned the nation and the world.

Keckley saved scraps from the dozens of gowns she made for Mrs. Lincoln, eventually piecing together a tribute known as the Mary Todd Lincoln Quilt. She also saved memories, which she fashioned into a book, Behind the Scenes: Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House. Upon its publication, Keckley’s memoir created a scandal that compelled Mary Todd Lincoln to sever all ties with her, but in the decades since, Keckley’s story has languished in the archives. In this impeccably researched, engrossing novel, Chiaverini brings history to life in rich, moving style.

The Spymistress: A Novel
ISBN: 0142180882

Dutton. 2014

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini is back with another enthralling historical novel set during the Civil War era, this time inspired by the life of “a true Union woman as true as steel” who risked everything by caring for Union prisoners of war — and stealing Confederate secrets.

Born to slave-holding aristocracy in Richmond, Virginia, and educated by Northern Quakers, Elizabeth Van Lew was a paradox of her time. When her native state seceded in April 1861, Van Lew’s convictions compelled her to defy the new Confederate regime. Pledging her loyalty to the Lincoln White House, her courage would never waver, even as her wartime actions threatened not only her reputation, but also her life.

Van Lew’s skills in gathering military intelligence were unparalleled. She helped to construct the Richmond Underground and orchestrated escapes from the infamous Confederate Libby Prison under the guise of humanitarian aid. Her spy ring’s reach was vast, from clerks in the Confederate War and Navy Departments to the very home of Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Although Van Lew was inducted posthumously into the Military Intelligence Hall of Fame, the astonishing scope of her achievements has never been widely known. In Chiaverini’s riveting tale of high-stakes espionage, a great heroine of the Civil War finally gets her due.

Mrs. Lincoln's Rival
ISBN: 0525954287

Dutton. 2014

The New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker and Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule, Jennifer Chiaverini, reveals the famous First Lady’s very public social and political contest with Kate Chase Sprague, memorialized as “one of the most remarkable women ever known to Washington society.” (Providence Journal)

Kate Chase Sprague was born in 1840 in Cincinnati, Ohio, the second daughter to the second wife of a devout but ambitious lawyer. Her father, Salmon P. Chase, rose to prominence in the antebellum years and was appointed secretary of the treasury in Abraham Lincoln’s cabinet, while aspiring to even greater heights.

Beautiful, intelligent, regal, and entrancing, young Kate Chase stepped into the role of establishing her thrice-widowed father in Washington society and as a future presidential candidate. Her efforts were successful enough that The Washington Star declared her “the most brilliant woman of her day. None outshone her.”

None, that is, but Mary Todd Lincoln. Though Mrs. Lincoln and her young rival held much in common—political acumen, love of country, and a resolute determination to help the men they loved achieve greatness—they could never be friends, for the success of one could come only at the expense of the other. When Kate Chase married William Sprague, the wealthy young governor of Rhode Island, it was widely regarded as the pinnacle of Washington society weddings. President Lincoln was in attendance. The First Lady was not.

Jennifer Chiaverini excels at chronicling the lives of extraordinary yet littleknown women through historical fiction. What she did for Elizabeth Keckley in Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker and for Elizabeth Van Lew in The Spymistress she does for Kate Chase Sprague in Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival.

Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule
ISBN: 0525954295

Dutton. 2015

The New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker and Mrs. Lincoln's Rival imagines the inner life of Julia Grant, beloved as a Civil War general’s wife and the First Lady, yet who grappled with a profound and complex relationship with the slave who was her namesake—until she forged a proud identity of her own.

In 1844, Missouri belle Julia Dent met dazzling horseman Lieutenant Ulysses S Grant. Four years passed before their parents permitted them to wed, and the groom’s abolitionist family refused to attend the ceremony.

Since childhood, Julia owned as a slave another Julia, known as Jule. Jule guarded her mistress’s closely held twin secrets: She had perilously poor vision but was gifted with prophetic sight. So it was that Jule became Julia’s eyes to the world.

And what a world it was, marked by gathering clouds of war. The Grants vowed never to be separated, but as Ulysses rose through the ranks—becoming general in chief of the Union Army—so did the stakes of their pact. During the war, Julia would travel, often in the company of Jule and the four Grant children, facing unreliable transportation and certain danger to be at her husband’s side.

Yet Julia and Jule saw two different wars. While Julia spoke out for women—Union and Confederate—she continued to hold Jule as a slave behind Union lines. Upon the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, Jule claimed her freedom and rose to prominence as a businesswoman in her own right, taking the honorary title Madame. The two women’s paths continued to cross throughout the Grants’ White House years in Washington, DC, and later in New York City, the site of Grant’s Tomb.

Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule is the first novel to chronicle this singular relationship, bound by sight and shadow.

Fates and Traitors: A Novel of John Wilkes Booth
ISBN: 0525954309

Dutton. 2016

The New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker returns with a riveting work of historical fiction following the notorious John Wilkes Booth and the four women who kept his perilous confidence.

John Wilkes Booth, the mercurial son of an acclaimed British stage actor and a Covent Garden flower girl, committed one of the most notorious acts in American history—the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.

The subject of more than a century of scholarship, speculation, and even obsession, Booth is often portrayed as a shadowy figure, a violent loner whose single murderous act made him the most hated man in America. Lost to history until now is the story of the four women whom he loved and who loved him in return: Mary Ann, the steadfast matriarch of the Booth family Asia, his loyal sister and confidante Lucy Lambert Hale, the senator’s daughter who adored Booth yet tragically misunderstood the intensity of his wrath and Mary Surratt, the Confederate widow entrusted with the secrets of his vengeful plot.

Fates and Traitors brings to life pivotal actors—some willing, others unwitting—who made an indelible mark on the history of our nation. Chiaverini portrays not just a soul in turmoil but a country at the precipice of immense change.

Christmas Bells: A Novel
ISBN: 1101984791

Dutton. 2016

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini celebrates Christmas, past and present, with a wondrous novel inspired by the classic poem “Christmas Bells,” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

I heard the bells on Christmas Day / Their old familiar carols play / And wild and sweet / The words repeat / Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

In 1860, the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow family celebrated Christmas at Craigie House, their home in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The publication of Longfellow’s classic Revolutionary War poem, “Paul Revere’s Ride,” was less than a month hence, and the country’s grave political unrest weighed heavily on his mind. Yet with his beloved wife, Fanny, and their five adored children at his side, the delights of the season prevailed.

In present-day Boston, a dedicated teacher in the Watertown public school system is stunned by somber holiday tidings. Sophia’s music program has been sacrificed to budget cuts, and she worries not only about her impending unemployment but also about the consequences to her underprivileged students. At the church where she volunteers as music director, Sophia tries to forget her cares as she leads the children’s choir in rehearsal for a Christmas Eve concert. Inspired to honor a local artist, Sophia has chosen a carol set to a poem by Longfellow, moved by the glorious words he penned one Christmas Day long ago, even as he suffered great loss.

Christmas Bells chronicles the events of 1863, when the peace and contentment of Longfellow’s family circle was suddenly, tragically broken, cutting even deeper than the privations of wartime. Through the pain of profound loss and hardship, Longfellow’s patriotism never failed, nor did the power of his language. “Christmas Bells,” the poem he wrote that holiday, lives on, spoken as verse and sung as a hymn.

Jennifer Chiaverini’s resonant and heartfelt novel for the season reminds us why we must continue to hear glad tidings, even as we are tested by strife. Reading Christmas Bells evokes the resplendent joy of a chorus of voices raised in reverent song.

Enchantress of Numbers: A Novel of Ada Lovelace
ISBN: 1101985208

Dutton. 2017

New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini illuminates the life of Ada Byron King, Countess of Lovelace—Lord Byron’s daughter and the world’s first computer programmer.

The only legitimate child of Lord Byron, the most brilliant, revered, and scandalous of the Romantic poets, Ada was destined for fame long before her birth. But her mathematician mother, estranged from Ada's infamous and destructively passionate father, is determined to save her only child from her perilous Byron heritage. Banishing fairy tales and make-believe from the nursery, Ada’s mother provides her daughter with a rigorous education grounded in mathematics and science. Any troubling spark of imagination—or worse yet, passion or poetry—is promptly extinguished. Or so her mother believes.

When Ada is introduced into London society as a highly eligible young heiress, she at last discovers the intellectual and social circles she has craved all her life. Little does she realize how her exciting new friendship with Charles Babbage—the brilliant, charming, and occasionally curmudgeonly inventor of an extraordinary machine, the Difference Engine—will define her destiny.

Enchantress of Numbers unveils the passions, dreams, and insatiable thirst for knowledge of a largely unheralded pioneer in computing—a young woman who stepped out of her father’s shadow to achieve her own laurels and champion the new technology that would shape the future.


Awards

Fates and Traitors

  • Starred Review, Kirkus
  • Starred Review, Library Journal
  • Starred Review, Booklist

    Speaking Engagements

    Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)

    Please contact Jennifer through her website.