Prayers for Sale
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Prayers for Sale

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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  9,899 ratings  ·  1,782 reviews
Hennie Comfort is eighty-six and has lived in the mountains of Middle Swan, Colorado since before it was Colorado. Nit Spindle is just seventeen and newly married. She and her husband have just moved to the high country in search of work. It's 1936 and the depression has ravaged the country and Nit and her husband have suffered greatly. Hennie notices the young woman loite...more
Audio CD, 305 pages
Published April 14th 2009 by Macmillan Audio (first published April 14th 1997)
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Christine Rebbert
After having read and enjoyed this author's "True Sisters" so much, I got a couple of her earlier books out of the library. This one centers around an 86-year-old widow living in a small mining town in the mountains of Colorado in 1936, and flashes back to her coming West in a covered wagon after the death of her first husband in the Civil War. Over the course of a summer and autumn, Hennie tells her life story to her new young neighbor Nit Spindle (what a name...), and what a story it is! If yo...more
Melissa
I'm usually able to get through a book fairly quickly... but this one just kind of stumped me. I couldn't get into it. I know there were so many people who liked this one... but I just wasn't a fan.

I think part of my problem was that I just didn't like Hennie. She's telling Nit these stories to help her adjust to living in her new home... but the stories are DEPRESSING!! "This woman left her husband and that father killed his own baby and this person died and that baby died and this person comm...more
Sharon
Sandra Dallas' novel takes its title from a sign on Hennie Comfort's fence, carved when she was "so happy that she had prayers for sale, since there was nothing to ask for." Hennie is an 86-year-old twice-widowed woman living in a small mining town called Middle Swan, Colorado, during the Great Depression.

The "prayers for sale" sign brings Nit Spindle, a 17-year-old newlywed girl, to Hennie's door, requesting a prayer for her stillborn daughter Effie. The two women become fast friends, and Henni...more
Valerie Totten
This book took me a long time to read. It wasn’t a book that you would stay up all night to read to get to the next chapter. I would read a chapter here and there. After reading it I wasn’t inspired by the tragic one after the other stories about her life. I must admit that after reading the first couple chapters, I didn’t think I could finish the book. The author, Sandra Dallas, uses way too much shock value when she writes. I found it hard reading about the loss of Hennie’s family, the death o...more
Staci

The stories, that is what draws you into this wonderful book. The stories that are weaved into present day and links you to the past. Hennie is eighty-seven years old and she's experienced pretty much everything life can throw at a person: husband dying in the Civil War, brutality at the hands of a cruel man, losing her only child, living in harsh conditions, becoming a widow for the second time. She posts a sign on her fence out front that says, "Prayers for Sale." There's a story behind this s...more
Catharine
Once again I wish for 1/2 stars, then I could give this book 3 1/2 stars. There were several things I really liked about this book: the themes; friendship, forgiveness, love, and faith. There aren't many books anymore that, without being preachy, have sort of an underlying religious current going on.
I enjoyed the characters, particularly Hennie, the main character. I loved that she was always looking to help someone. (Thus the Prayers for Sale--they didn't really cost money).
The book was se...more
Becky
I love this kind of book: meaty yet enjoyable, enthralling, historically-based, with rich and endearing characters and a few twists, ie. just plain good story-telling.
Hennie, the main character is herself a great story-teller with a wealth of interesting, harrowing, sometimes humorous, tender, wise, and wonderful stories to tell. She is also a quilter and believes "A quilt circle's like a crazy quilt. You got all kinds in it. Some members are the big pieces of velvet or brocade, show-offish, wh...more
Amy Salamon
Terrible. Just terrible. I would ban this book if I could, and not because of the actual content. It’s because the writing is so simplistic, it upset any semblance of literary-ness (I’m so upset, I can’t think of actual words).

[Full disclosure: I was specifically looking for a light and quick read. I guess I got one, although I’ve read light reads that didn’t insult my intelligence like this.)

My main complaint is Dallas left nothing to the imagination. Anything that had a semblance of symbolism,...more
Ashley
So after checking this out for the 3rd time to try to finish this book I can sum it up in a few good quotes from the book. It was a very slow read. I’m so happy I finally finished it. But I couldn’t just let this one go. The book was about an elderly lady living in a mining town helping others through their life. It was about how forgiveness heals your soul as well as the other person’s soul.

Very misleading title-Prayers for sale (a sign outside her home, the meaning behind it) - I was so happy...more
Alana
I read this book when I found out it had one of the characters from The Diary of Mattie Spenser in it, and while it's not a sequel, per se, it does bring some closure to that storyline as well as introduce another collection of characters that jump right to life. While The Diary of Mattie Spenser was more engaging as a story, Prayers for Sale has a whole different feel to it that is very special. It is told as if one was sitting in a sewing circle (a quilting circle, to be more specific), listen...more
Donna
The setting for this tale is 1936 in Middle Swan, Colorado, a small gold-mining town. Hennie Comfort is in her 80's and befriends a young, married girl, Nit Spindle, who has just moved to town with her husband. The two women have much in common & bond instantly. Hennie decides to take Nit under her wing & teach her what she needs to know to survive the harsh life that living in Middle Swan brings. Hennie shares her life story (and many other people's story) with Nit over the course of th...more
David
This book is a current best-seller, and it's easy to see why. It is set in the Colorado mountains during the mining boom of the early 20th century (apparently loosely based on the history of Breckenridge). It's a story of friendship between an old woman, long-time resident of the town about to be forced to move out, and a young woman just arriving. The old woman has a lifetime of stories to tell - some tender and loving, some brutal and heart-rending. The young woman has her own secrets. The two...more
Portia
Read this one for a book club. I was able to finish it, though it was hard at times to keep going. Maybe because I'm really not that riveted by quilting. Otherwise, it just seemed super slow and repetitive and boring. Good points: OK strong female main character, decent depiction(I guess) of life in a CO mining town, good clean "true love" optimism without too much sentimental mush, and most of all, the title. It refers to being so happy and content with life that a person has prayers to spare,...more
Jenna
I unexpectedly really enjoyed this book. It wasn't one I would normally pick for myself and am happy I ended up liking it so much. This book is filled with many great life lessons and stories told by Hennie that she wants passed on long after she is gone. There are many factors that made this a great story: friendship, faith and forgiveness.

I really enjoyed the theme of the story - Hennie taking young Nit under her wing and trying to teach her the ways of mining living in the mountains of Color...more
Diana
This book was recommended to me by a friend. She said her book club had read the book and enjoyed it. Thank you for the recommendation, Shirley !! Hennie Comfort is 86 years old lives in Middle Swan, Colorado. She has lived a long life full of joy, happiness, grief, hate...the whole gammet. As the story begins, she meets 17 year old Nit Spindle. There is a sign in front of Hennie's house that is old and faded and says, "Prayers for Sale." Hennie sees Nit looking at the sign and Nit asks Hennie i...more
Robin Nicholas
The year is 1935 and 86 year old Hennie Comfort has lived in a mountain gold mining town for the last 70 years. Her daughter thinks it is time that she comes "down the mountain" to live with her. While Hennie is treasuring her last months on the mountain she meets 17 year old Nit Spindle, who has just moved here with her husband. Nit Spindle is in need of some prayers and a friend. Hennie is there for her and over the next 9 months, over some quiltin' and coffee she passes on her stories and adv...more
Kathy
It's 1936 and the Great Depression has taken its toll. ighty-six-year-old Hennie Comfort has lived in Middle Swan, CO - up in the high country of the snow-covered Rocky Mountains - since before it was Colorado. When she first meets 17-year old Nit Spindle, Hennie is drawn to the young grieving girl. Nit and her husband have come to this small mining town in search of work, but the loneliness and loss Nit feels are almost too much to bear. One day she notices an old sign that reads, "Prayers for...more
Sally G.
This book completely filled me with the joy of female friendships, courage and resilience in hard times, the beauty and power of story-telling and life experienced in a time period and location I'll never know on my own.

Hennie Comfort, an 86 year old woman, has lived in the mountains of Middle Swan, Colorado since before it was Colorado.

Nit Spindle is just 17 years old and newly married. She and her husband have recently moved to the high country in search of work. It's 1936 and the depression...more
Georgia Herod

Set in 1936, with the Great Depression having taken its toll, Prayers for Sale is the story of a unique intergenerational friendship, forgiveness, healing. The central character, 86-year-old Hennie Comfort, has lived in Middle Swan, in the high country of the Rocky Mountains, since before CO became a state. When she first meets 17-year-old Nit Spindle, a newcomer whose husband has taken a job in the local gold mine, Hennie is drawn to the young, lonely, isolated girl who is grieving. The harsh c...more
June Ahern
Widow Hennie Comfort is eighty and six years old and is faced with the fact that she is old - too old to be living alone in her mountain home in a mining town of Middle Swan, Colorado. Her only child, a daughter wants her mother to live with her in Iowa and Hennie is reluctant. Still, she knows that another winter in the mountains will be too hard on her, so she’s made up her mind at the end of the year to move-in with her daughter. It’s within that year the story, set in 1936 during the Great D...more
Kathy Davie
Oh lord, I hated this book...it was so good. I cried and remembered and cried. Thank god, it had an ending with which I could live.

Arriving fresh in Middle Swan, a mining camp in the Colorado Rockies, from tragedy after the Civil War, Ila Mae, as she was then known, has come to Middle Swan to possibly marry a friend of her childhood friend. We learn of Hennie's 70 years in Middle Swan while Hennie is in her last year there when she befriends Nit Spindle, a young newlywed who has followed her equ...more
Tammy Stith
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rosanne
This was a very interesting book not only because I am a quilter but it told a lovely story. The main characters Hennie and Nit become fast friends. Hennie is 86 and Nit is very young and a new member to the Swan community. Based at a dregding camp in Colorado things could not be more rural and basic. Hard working men who risk their lives daily on the dredge come home to equally hard working homemakers. Hennie befriends the newcomer Nit and the two become instant friends bound together by their...more
Kelli Pearson
This book is sweet enough, but highly predictable and rather dull. The story is basically the developing friendship between two women in an old mining town--an old woman and a young one, new to the town. The old woman quilts and tells great stories, and this is basically the entire book. They get together, quilt, and the old woman tells stories. In every chapter. There is some hint of "something else" to be resolved at the end, which is a tepid attempt at tension, but it doesn't work. The overal...more
Lori
a nice read about friendship between two women. Hennie an 86 year old woman, and Nit a 17 year old. they meet when Nit who just arrived to Middleswan Colorado spots a sign that says "prayers for sale" she knocks on the door to Hennie's house and asked "how much for a prayer?" hennie really does not expect money but listens to the girls need for a prayer. a friendship begins. both like to quilt, Hennie experienced and Nit just beginning. over quilting Hennie tells nit stories of her life, to the...more
Rita Kay
I loved this book...first of all because Henny is a storyteller and a wise and caring old woman who has lived through incredibly good times and bad...but mysteriously refuses to darken the doors of the small mining town church which is puzzling to those who know her...especially since she is such a caring, giving person. Her friendship with a young newlywed who has moved to town with her husband is reassuring as they share hopes and fears and dreams around the quilting rack. Almost made me wish...more
bookczuk
Sep 30, 2009 bookczuk rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to bookczuk by: Elizabeth
I've read several books by this author before (Diary of Mattie Spencer. Alice's Tulips, The Chili Queen, The Persian Pickle Club) and like her way of telling a tale about a time past. The women in her books are realistic, with a strength like that which I see in many of the women of my acquaintance. We're not superheroes, just women who face the challenges, joys and grief that life throws our way, and keep going with the business of living our lives and loving our families. This was a gentle boo...more
Lisa
I can't say how much I enjoyed this book. It was like sitting at a favorite uncle's knee while he spun a wonderful story that you have heard a thousand times but it never gets old. There are some characters in books that I wish that I could be and Hennie would be one of them. This book is about friendship, joy, quilting, prayers, sadness, and forgiveness. It follows the main character, Hennie Comfort, as she befriends a new young neighbor girl. The story is set in the Colorado gold town named Mi...more
Becky
An interesting story taking place in the mountains of Colorado during the 1930's. The story evolves around an elderly woman named Hennie Comfort, who came to the town around 1870. Hennie befriends a newly married young bride name Nit.

The woman and most of the towns women quilt. It seems to be a past time that all the women enjoy. It shows that if you don't quilt, you have little in common with the other women.

There are so many hardships that are endured by these women. Their stories come out thr...more
Jessica McCann
Sandra Dallas creates characters who live with you long after you turn the last page and close the book. This is the second of Dallas' books I've read, and she is fast becoming one of my favorite historical fiction authors. Set in a 1930s Colorado mining town high in the mountains, the book tells the story of 86-year-old Hennie Comfort who moved West after the Civil War to marry a miner after her first husband was killed in the war. It combines vivid detail, lively story-telling and a cast of qu...more
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Award-winning author SANDRA DALLAS was dubbed “a quintessential American voice” by Jane Smiley, in Vogue Magazine. Sandra’s novels with their themes of loyalty, friendship, and human dignity have been translated into a dozen foreign languages and have been optioned for films.

A journalism graduate of the University of Denver, Sandra began her writing career as a reporter with Business Week. A staff...more
More about Sandra Dallas...
The Persian Pickle Club Tallgrass The Diary of Mattie Spenser Alice's Tulips Whiter Than Snow

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