Prayers For Sale

Fiction - Chick Lit
320 Pages
Reviewed on 05/27/2009
Buy on Amazon

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite

The sign read Prayers For Sale.  It drew the attention of seventeen-year-old newlywed Nit.  She was lonely, sad, and grieving.  Prayers were not actually for sale.  I do not think the story behind the sign is ever shared.  Hennie  lives in the house with the sign that attracted Nit’s attention.  The eighty-six-year-old woman has lived in Middle Swan, Colorado for seventy years.  She came to the Rockies to marry a man she had never met.  She was alone now, a widow.  The year is 1936.  Hennie’s daughter insisted it was time for her to move to Iowa.  Quilting was a passion for Hennie.  Soon Nit and Hennie became close friends.  They spent many hours together over a quilting frame. As they make the tiny stitches on the fabric, Hennie shared her story. Perhaps the two bonded easily because they shared the grief of a lost child.

Prayers For Sale shares the life of women in the depression.  The women lived a suppressed life.  The character Maudie Sarsfield stood out to me.  She stitched her initials into her quilts so that people would know she existed.  If a wife tried to leave her husband, he had the right to track her down and kill her.

Prayers For Sale will bring a smile to your lips and tears to your eyes.  Sandra Dallas is a talented author.  She gives life to her characters.  Hennie and Nit are multidimensional.  While the topic of this book sounds sad, it is not.  This book is uplifting.  It shows the tenacity of the characters.  These women were made of something special.  The voice of the characters is distinctive.  You can hear the dialect even in the written word.  Prayers are not for sale in this book; they are freely given along with blessings.

Rebecca Cox

Hennie Comfort was a strong woman who lived most of her 86 years in the high country of Colorado in a rough mining town. She developed the ability to quilt and tell the stories of the town and its people. They aren't always pretty and they aren't always that exciting, but neither is life in a mining town in the late 1800's and early 1900's. I found this book extremely interesting, realistic and charming. Hennie's time to pass on her stories and guardianship of the town had come and it was both painful and joyful. This is a delightful book in a quiet and thoughtful way.


Oh, how can you not love Sandra Dallas. I love, love, love this woman's writing. She almost makes me want to live in a time when one room, a handmade quilt, pot of tea, blazing fire, and a friend who cares only to make you feel special were precious. That's what her books do for me; they make me feel special.


i actually listened to this from an Audible purchase - the voices in the book are strong - it was a completely satisfying "listen" - loved the characters.


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 love of quilts. While sharing quilting time Hennie share her life stories with Nit. Nit has found a mother figure and friend who makes living in such dire circumstances bearable.

Hennie's stories span the 70 years of her life on the Swan and some events before she got there. Her one secret awaits to be shared before Hennie leaves her home. Who does she tell? Nit.

I really enjoyed this book and its tales and I especially loved the depiction of the the quilting bonds shared by the woman/quilters.

I intend to recommend this book to my quilting buddies and anyone who enjoys a good stor.

Barb P

I have "read" Prayers for Sale on audio CD. I love to listen to books on CD in my car, to and from work. This book is such a feel good story, especially if you are a quilter. I love all the characters (Hennie and Nit and the rest) --- Sandra Dallas is so authentic --- she captures the people and the circumstance of the era she is writing about. My favorite was Persian Pickle Club --- but this is a close contender for a new favorite.

B. Boone

This is an awesome book! Sandra Dallas did a supurb job with the story.


The stories, that is what draws you into this wonderful book. The stories that are weaved into present day(in the book) 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 sign...and one that I'm not going to tell you, but this sign is what brings Nit, a young, newlywed girl to her front door. From that chance meeting you get to watch as their friendship grows and how living life in the high country of the Rocky Mountains can forge relationships that last forever. This is definitely a character driven book. I loved Hennie by the time I came to the end, she's one tough cookie and she will stay with me for some time. Once I started this book I couldn't put it down. It made me think back to my childhood when my Grandpa Bill would get out his harmonica and start blowing on that thing, singing, and bringing all us grandkids to his feet. From there he would start telling his own stories; driving a Model A car when he was eleven, running moonshine in Kentucky, being wild with his buddies, how he met my Grandma and took her to the outdoor picture show. I loved it when he shared these treasures with us, they fascinated me and the memory of them will stay forever. Storytelling needs to be a tradition that is handed down to the next generation. So, if you're looking for good old fashioned story telling....then look no further, because this book fits the bill. I'm new to the author, Sandra Dallas, and Kaye of Pudgy Penguin Perusals assures me that Dallas is a great author. She was so enthusiastic about her that I've requested Tallgrass already from the library!!!! I feel pretty confident about Kaye's recommendation...because I loved this book!!

Carolyn E. Ringer

This is about strong women who prevail against terrible odds. It is told in story-form much as itinerate storytellers did of old. I enjoyed it very much.


This book is beautifully written and filled with compelling human interest stories that unfold in an unpredictable but ultimately dramatically satisfying manner. "Prayers for Sale" is one of Dallas' best books.

P. Nelson

I have ready many Sandra Dallas books and for some reason lost track of her for awhile. An old review I wrote lead me back to her to see what she had written recently. I just finished Prayers For Sale and it was hard for me to put down. This book, as are most of Sandra's books, is imminently readable. Short and sweet, she is just a wonderful story teller and I find I always come to care about the characters she creates. I am hoping that there will be a sequel to this book because I want to know what happens to Dick and Nit and Hennie herself. I won't give away anymore of the story than that. Read the book - highly enjoyable reading to escape what's going on in today's world. Thanks Sandra!