Enthralling...beautiful... An inspiring and moving sideways look at history.
Enthralling... By unpicking the seams of the clothes on our backs, Clare Hunter has brought to light elements of history that have languished in our collective attic for far too long. Threads of Life is a terrific book.
Astonishing . . . Hunter studied creative writing and cleverly uses personal narrative to create a persona one will instantly like . . . so well written.
Triumphant . . . an inspiration to anyone who has ever thought of picking up a needle and thread.
Hunter's non-fiction debut reframes needlework as a powerful and political medium . . . Threads of Life is a compelling and beautifully written account of how marginalised peoples throughout history have used the language of sewing, embroidery and textiles to tell their neglected stories.
A blend of history and memoir, the book roves across centuries and continents to reveal how sewing has played a crucial part in our lives - from courts and battlefields to prisons and drawing rooms... Many of the stories in Threads of Life are heart-breaking...This beautiful, moving book makes you want to rush out and grab a needle.
It's an astonishing feat, this patchwork quilt of history, culture and politics, which takes us from Saxon England to colonised African tribes, Palestinian villages, rural China and the cramped homes of American slaves . . . Her highly impressive debut is a richly textured and moving record of a history that has largely being lost.
Threads of Life is a beautifully considered book that reminds us of how much sewing plays a crucial part in expressing the many facets of our lives. Clare Hunter has managed to mix the personal with the political with moving results. Reading it made me pick up my needle with a new perspective.