+Book Review+ A Stitch in Time by Amanda James #ChocLitSaturdays #RRSciFiMonth (time travel)

Posted Saturday, 15 November, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , 2 Comments

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A Stitch in Time by Amanda James

Author Connections: Personal Site | @akjames61Facebook

Illustrated By: Berni Stevens

 @circleoflebanon | Writer | Illustrator

Converse via: #ChocLit & #AStitchInTime

Genre(s): Fiction | Romance | Time Travel

Paranormal Elements | Fantasy Suspense

Available Formats: Paperback, Audiobook, Large Print, & E-Book

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Acquired Book By:

I am a ChocLit reviewer who receives books of my choice in exchange for honest reviews! I received a complimentary copy of “A Stitch in Time” from ChocLit via IPM (International Publisher’s Marketing) in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

Inspired to Read:

I have had an attachment to time travelling narratives for awhile now, as my newly passionate admiration for Doctor Who will account for the fact that I am quite giddy to soak inside a story where the art of travelling through time is championed by the traveller who seeks to help humanity out of the curious nature of time itself. Previously, I have enjoyed seeing forays of time travel through Quantum Leap and Star Trek television series (of the creativity of Gene Roddenberry). Time travel in fiction is a new pursuit of mine — and as I am focusing a bit on this sub-genre of Science Fiction during Sci Fi November, I felt it was only fitting to post this review at such a time as to encourage sci-fi readers to know that even the breadth of Romance can entertain a suspense-filled time travel story arc!

I believe what attracts me the most to the art and style of each writer who conveys how time travel occurs is how variant the science is that expresses the plausibility of travelling through time. Everyone has a different approach, yet there is a level of understanding in each new way to duck through time and effectively change a few things as far as how history was written by the people who lived through the hours of time itself.

+Book Review+ A Stitch in Time by Amanda James #ChocLitSaturdays #RRSciFiMonth (time travel)A Stitch in Time
by Amanda James
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Berni Stevens
Source: Direct from Publisher

A stitch in time saves nine… or does it?

Sarah Yates is a thirty-something history teacher, divorced, disillusioned and desperate to have more excitement in her life. Making all her dreams come true seems about as likely as climbing Everest in stilettos.

Then one evening the doorbell rings and the handsome and mysterious John Needler brings more excitement than Sarah could ever have imagined. John wants Sarah to go back in time …

Sarah is whisked from the Sheffield Blitz to the suffragette movement in London to the Old American West, trying to make sure people find their happy endings. The only question is, will she ever be able to find hers?

Read an Excerpt of the Novel

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

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Also by this author: Somewhere Beyond the Sea

Series: Stitch in Time,


Genres: Romance Fiction, Fantasy Fiction, Time Travel Fiction


Published by ChocLitUK

on 7th April, 2013

Pages: 301

Author Biography:Amanda James

Amanda James was born in Sheffield and now lives in Cornwall with her husband and two cats. In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, singing and spending lots of time with her grandson. She also admits to spending far too much time chatting on Twitter and Facebook! Amanda recently left her teaching role (teaching history to sixth form pupils) to follow her ambition to live her life doing what she most enjoys—writing.

Amanda is a published author of short stories and her first novel with Choc Lit, A Stitch in Time was chosen as a Top Pickin RT Book Reviews magazine in the US in July 2013 and won a 2013 Reviewers’ Choice Award from Single Titles.

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A theory on time, the traveller who knits it back together, & the reality of time travel:

James reveals the basis of her running theory on the full dimension of being a time traveller and one who intends to not only travel along the meridians of time but on fusing time as a broken structure of record back together again; with a propensity of precision generally relegated to knitters or sewers. I, personally, loved what the time traveller’s mentor and guide is called inside the story (as a Time Needle sounds ever so posh) as ‘needling with time’ simply made a heap of sense to me! Time travellers by definition can either muck up an alignment of the continuum itself OR they can create positive contributions by causing a deviant of order as they re-distribute a level of calm within the chaos. I even liked how she parlayed her theory within the title of the novel itself, by using a Stitch in such a clever execution of a person’s job rather than rely solely on prior knowledge the reader may or may not have had as far as vetting information on the subject for themselves.

My Review of A Stitch in Time:

An interruption of propriety jolts Sarah out of her meet-up with Karen at the cafe, whereupon she’s properly drenched down to the skins by an errant bus driver who squashed her up against a wall whilst washing her thick and true with the dredge of the monsoon! A ruined outfit without the benefit of rain-proof materials, a devastating loss of being glamoured and doted on a the hair dressers, and a feeling of ill settling over her confidence as she walked into the cafe put her mood in the lowest of lows; fully visible had she worn a mood ring! I felt for her instinctively as who wants to have the street appearance of a drowned rat? By the time the cake and the coffee comped by the cafe arrived, even my own heart felt the chill leaving her bones! It was how she heard the muddling news of her adulterous husband and bestie that cackled the fires and left such a bittersweet taste to rise out of the delusion of her life being balanced in mirth! What an absolute cad! And, how could a best friend just sit there across the table from you whilst knowing the truth of how she was withchild? Honestly, the nerve of people!

The pace of A Stitch in Time picks up a bit of haste, as we receive a bit of a crash-course in how time is bent, yielded, and traversed if you are one whose destined to travel backwards to right a wrong from the past. In this vein, every inch of why I loved watching Quantum Leap came back to me, as I loved that one particular aspect of the series most: to create a viable way to alter the past in order to save the future. Such a hearty premise in that sentiment and the undertaking alone to allow it a tangible vortex of growth over the score of a series was even more impressive! Within the pages of this novel, we start to get into the conscience mind of who is behind keeping tabs on ‘time’ itself as much as who can affectively create a fizzer of a fix within the threads of where time intersects with our reality.

Once Sarah is carted off to 1940, the era and setting of being transported to the very eve of a major blitz bombing in London is well-apt for how James took her pen and wielded such a convincible assertion of ‘when’ Sarah lands through her portal of time travel. The portal itself is not visible to the reader nor known to Sarah herself even, at least not on this first assignment where she barely has her wits about her whilst dealing with the present state of unease of ‘when’ she arrives. I loved watching her acute emotions and sensibility of history take a firm root in her remarks as much as a few warning bells of how not to let slip historical facts known in the latter half of the 20th Century! She is walking a tightrope of a dance, between succeeding in a duty of a rescuer of an innocent and being quite human in reacting to where time has taken her to exist.

James has a clever way of knowing exactly how to pin-point the time eras she wants her readers to alight inside, as from the very moment the timescape of the London Blitz came into view to when Sarah is plucked back into her contemporary modern life in 2013; James has an uncanny familiarity with each timescape she pens into life. The second time Sarah exchanges one life for another places her in 1913; this time as the unwitting lower grade maid to a lady whose sense of dictation of duties is without boundaries. The visual clues of each time jump Sarah Yates takes within A Stitch in Time draws the reader into a closer viewing of where history and the moral obligation to put something right which may have gone array into central focus. James does a wonderful job of bringing the theory of time splintered theories wherein if you could travel back and forth in time, what would you do with the moments you were given!? Would you work towards saving humanity one person at a time? Would you attempt to fix a nanosecond in the past, if it would effectively give one human the chance to survive?

To capture the historical feel of each timescape is a wonderment for the eyes to drink in, as each little detail that would clue you into which era you were alighting inside is present and accounted; this proves how well James not only knew the historical remnants of visual history but of how to place you into a time vortex where you are bewitched as much as Sarah upon her arrivals. Sarah grows in her uncanny timing for expressing exactly what comes to mind, even if the person she is attempting to be at the moment she’s time travelling would never speak half as honest as she has become herself! I enjoyed seeing Sarah’s personality change per each visit to the past she was making; as if the time travelling itself had a boomerang effect on the traveller.

What I felt gave Sarah a proper grounding of becoming betwixt and between the humanness of her soul and the duties of her stitchings is that James kept her emotionally unchecked for most of her travels. She led with her heart, nearly did not resolve any of the hurdles flung in her direction with her head nor the reason that goes with the logic of thinkings things through properly, but James kept Sarah believable because she stitched into Sarah the character attributes most of us might find ourselves having whilst living through the same pickle of time travel! How to disconnect your heart and your emotional side of understanding when you need to remain on point of task? Throughout her travels, Sarah starts to mend the emotional angst of her past, but it is how she and John (the Needler) fit together in each other’s lives that is the true gift of her blessing as a Stitch.

I appreciated reading about the back-story of John’s parents and the most ominous of all, is how there is a shadow behind them — an organisational entity who keeps track of Stitches and Needlers, to where I was quite shocked to find they are not at all benign! They have this omnipresence of power and control; to where I have a feeling they might be revealed a bit more in Cross Stitch. At least I am hoping there is more to become revealed on who truly is behind the time travelling escapades and to what end will they try to achieve the impossible!?

A wicked joy of seeing all the lovely phrases turnt in on the story’s visualisations:

James has a pure wit of candor nestled into her writing voice, as she bespeaks well of her British heritage by etching in the everyday words and phrases I am sure most Britons take for granted! For this particular Anglophile on the opposite end of the Pond, little bits of exchange like “stroppy” to reflect being ‘bent out of shape’ and “banging on” to pronounce of being a bit ‘pushy on the details’ felt like a lesson in of itself! As foresaid numerous times, one of my greatest joys in reading British Lit (either of the modern era or the classical eras) is the full measure of how words and phrases can dictate the visualisations of the reader! I love being wholly entreated into a story whose tone and texture re-alight the action of the moment by fusing the reader into a hearty language that is not readily overheard in their everyday world! To me, reading is a true epic adventure when you start to listen to the vernacular of the characters who are living their hours elsewhere where the tincture of their movements are set to a different rhythm and pace. Isn’t that then, the true essence of why we’re all a bit hung up on the idea of time travel? To cart ourselves off somewhere wickedly brilliant yet entirely unique from where we spend our regular hours?

Whilst I was settling into the time shift sequences, my mind fluttered back to an episode of a tv series where Katherine Heigl travelled backwards in time to stop someone from taking power who would ultimately change everyone’s life during WWII. I found the wikipedia page for the actresses filmography, and linked the episode to this post, as ironically I had not realised it was a ‘next generation’ Twilight Zone series which aired this particular story-line!

More of a wrinkling of brow than a Fly in the Ointment:

My brow was wrinkled a few times whilst reading “A Stitch in Time” due to the infrequency of stronger language being used here or there. It wasn’t sprinkled throughout the story nor was it in high amounts either – generally speaking Sarah Yates only chose to use the most strong of words whenever she was vexed past the point of her due and in some instances, I could feel the vexation of her angst coming off her in waves of anger even through the pages! There were a few instances where I felt a different choice of word might have done just as well, but for the most part, it was the suspense of Sarah’s plight that kept me so tied to the story, I overlooked the few instances of where language played a stronger role.

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Book Spotlight

Cross Stitch by Amanda James

A stitch in time may save nine but a cross-stitch spells disaster … It should be the happiest day of her life. Despite past heartache, Sarah Yates is finally marrying her true love, John Needler. But Sarah and John can’t pretend they’re an ordinary couple. They’re time travellers and where time travel is involved, nothing runs smoothly. One minute Sarah is saying her vows and the next she is hurtled back in time to a country that is on the cusp of war, and into the company of the bad-tempered Veronica Ratchet. Newly-wedded bliss is certainly not on the cards for Sarah as events see her travelling from the British punk era to 1950’s America. And even when she returns home she can’t escape Veronica. But when the past and the present collide, that’s when the real problems start …

Now that I have reviewed the prequel to Cross Stitch, whilst noting the cheeky title of the sequel is the exact same as the original Outlander novel, I cannot help but feel on pins for the 7th December, 2014 release! What wicked sweet fun it has been to discover a debut novelist earlier in the year whilst browsing through the catalogue of authors on ChocLit.com all the while not realising that one of the novels I wanted to read would have a sequel coming out before the year ends! It is a joy ontop of a joy for me, as previously I had learnt the smashing news of Flight to Coorah Creek had a sequel being penned for it as well! I am always so attached to the characters who come across my path, the ability to spend a bit more time with them in successive installments is a rare treat and a pure bolt of happiness!

A short Author Q&A:

I honestly intended to focus more on A Stitch in Time during today’s #ChocLitSaturdays (the chat!), however, due to a breach of security in using the platform I had originally felt was safe to use as a method to ‘auto-add’ the tag to our conversations proved to be a quickfire way to have Twitter lock out my account and thereby withdraw me from the conversation before I could get a foothold into it! I appreciate everyone’s acceptance of the brief convo today, but I am simply thankful I had the foresight to ask a few of my Questions to Ms. James ahead of this happening! I always love giving the author of a ChocLit novel the chance to speak about their stories, especially whilst I am in the process of reading them myself! I thought it was quite brilliant how she uses the title as the impetus to carry forward the stories — it is a bit similar to how I write as well, but I am not always finding the title arrives ahead of the story itself. I love how all writers are different and how we each find our own way to percolate the stories out of our imaginations!

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This book review is courtesy of ChocLitUK,

ChocLitUK Reviewer

Previously I have happily hosted ChocLit Authors on Jorie Loves A Story:

Mark your calendars!

Please take note of the Related Articles as they were hand selected due to being of cross-reference importance in relation to this book review. This applies to each post on my blog where you see Related Articles underneath the post. Be sure to take a moment to acknowledge the further readings which are offered.

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#ChocLitSaturdays | a feature exclusive to Jorie Loves A Story

And, I wonder which stories I will be selecting to read? I decided to create a *special!* ChocLit inspired List on Riffle: This #ChocLitSaturdays Girl has a #ChocLit Next Reads List! I will continue to add stories by ChocLit authors to this list as I find new writers & stories which whet my fancy to read! Therefore, each time I get ready to queue a new batch of ChocLit novels, you can be assured they will be from this List!

For those who are unware of #ChocLitSaturdays, the chat, we meet regular @ 11am EST / 4pm London at #ChocLitSaturdays (the hashtag)! I created to encourage new readers to discover not only the ChocLit novels I am showcasing & reading through my blog feature of the same name, but to help draw a close knit group of Romance booklovers, writers, and appreciators together for an hour of solid friendship and wicked sweet conversation!

All are welcome to attend! Tweet me or leave a comment in this thread for further details!

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#IndieWriterMonth Blog Feature of Jorie Loves A Story, badge created by Jorie in CanvaSFN 2014 Participant badge created by Jorie in Canva

Reader Interactive Question:

Who is your favourite time travel novelist? And, what do you love the most about time travel narratives that change and alter the science behind how travelling through time is both plausible and acceptable to understand in literature!?

{SOURCES: Author photograph, Author Biography, Book Synopsis of both novels, and Book Covers of “A Stitch in Time” & “Cross Stitch” were provided by ChocLitUK and were used by permission. Book Review badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Jorie Loves A Story badge created by Ravven with edits by Jorie in FotoFlexer. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Cross-Posted badge for Riffle created by Jorie in Canva.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Related Articles:

Cradle of Darkness (episode of “The Twilight Zone”) – (en.wikipedia.org)

The ‘live reading’ tweets I shared as I read & reviewed “A Stitch in Time”:

{ favourite & Re-tweet if inspired to share }

Comments via Twitter:


Cross-posted to Riffle badge created by Jorie in Canva

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Saturday, 15 November, 2014 by jorielov in 20th Century, Adulterous Affair, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Spotlight & Announcement, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Novel, Divorce & Martial Strife, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Indie Author, Life Shift, Modern British Literature, Romance Fiction, Romantic Suspense, Second Chance Love, Singletons & Commitment, Unexpected Pregnancy, Vulgarity in Literature




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2 responses to “+Book Review+ A Stitch in Time by Amanda James #ChocLitSaturdays #RRSciFiMonth (time travel)

    • It most definitely was, Ms Donna Marie! :)

      I liked the fact Ms James did not spin a tale that was predictable nor within my own mind’s imagination of where time travel can lead an individual to go. I truly appreciated seeing elements which reminded me of Quantum Leap but only partially; as she truly wrote a very compelling and curious novel which begs the reader to ask the bigger questions about what you might do if your situation was suddenly to be put in the position of being a Stitch! :) Not an easy choice to make!

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