cover image Bess's Log Cabin Quilt

Bess's Log Cabin Quilt

D. Anne Love. Holiday House, $15.95 (123pp) ISBN 978-0-8234-1178-8

Bess Morgan's father was due home weeks ago from a job guiding settlers along the perilous Oregon Trail, and Bess and her mother are growing worried. Then Bess's mother falls ill with ``swamp fever'' and, to top it all off, they must scrape up a hundred dollars to pay the money lender or he'll seize the Morgans' farm-if the Indians don't get it first. The 10-year-old's only hope is to win a quilting contest in a local fair. The prize? A hundred dollars. Bess's fingers ``fly across the fabric'' even though she's just learned to quilt; the finished work isn't ``as fancy as some, but the pattern was perfectly straight.'' The ending will surprise no one-this first novel, with its cliches and melodramas, is the bargain-basement version of a Little House on the Prairie TV episode. Ages 7-11. (Apr.)