I'm reading a thrilling book this week.
It's Gone Girl by GIllian Flynn. It's a fast moving whodunnit and I'm having a hard time putting it down to get things accomplished.
I love the mystery of the book... but also the witticisms that the author spurts out that have me guffawing. I just started Part II of the book where the main titular character describes the way women will often become the woman of their man's dreams (e.g. pretending to like sports, poker, non-stop horizontal bedroom sports, etc). Then she talks about the fact that you never hear about men pretending that they're huge Jane Austen fans, wanting to take up knitting... and oh wait! This was starting to feel a little too personal! You can see why I liked it!
But trust me. It's a great read and you'll be glad you picked it up. I am halfway through and can hardly wait until I get my work done today so I can get right back to it.
What have I been doing since I obviously haven't been knitting? Well, I've been reading. In fact, I want to share with you a great summer read - Jane Green's Another Piece of My Heart.
This book is about a blended family. It's about parenting. It's about teenage angst. It's about the different types of love. Here's the official description from Jane Green's website:
Andi has spent much of her adult life looking for the perfect man, and at thirty-seven, she's finally found him. Ethan--divorced with two daughters, Emily and Sophia--is a devoted father and even better husband. Always hoping one day she would be a mother, Andi embraces the girls like they were her own. But in Emily’s eyes, Andi is an obstacle to her father’s love, and Emily will do whatever it takes to break her down. When the dynamics between the two escalate, they threaten everything Andi believes about love, family, and motherhood—leaving both women standing at a crossroad in their lives…and in their hearts.
At first, I have to confess, I wasn't sure if I could continue reading it. It was a lot like my house (except I have two teenage boys and my husband is probably more the Andi than I am). This book was about teenage angst from the perspective of a mother. I have enough of that at home. I wasn't sure I wanted to curl up and read about it in my free time, too. But I did. And I'm glad I did. Why? Because the second half of the book is written from the teenager Emily's eyes. Ooh. Interesting. I liked that. I liked trying to figure out what the teenager was thinking.
Now if only I had a book for reading my two teenage boys' minds...
So go read about modern real-life families and real life love stories. I think it will make you hug your children a little tighter at night... with a little bit more perspective into what they're thinking.
And I keep wondering - how does Jane know what a teenage girl is thinking? Well, aside from having teenagers of her own, I think she might just have an inside track.
P.S. - If you don't know, Jane lives in Westport and one of the things I like about her books is she often weaves some of our nutmeg items into her stories - from a coffee shop, to the beach, to a favorite store or street. This time, the book is not set in Westport... but I still imagine it set here. How can I help it?
If you read the book, let me know what you thought? Do you think she did the modern family/modern romance correctly? Having gone through it myself, or rather, I should say, going through it myself, I think she gets an A+.
Thanks Jane for another great read! Now if we could just get you knitting...
Four years ago (Wow! Was it really four years ago?) Charlene Schurch came to my LYS - Knitting Central - and taught a two-day marathon sock class. Of course, I signed up for both full day courses and my head nearly exploded. If you've been reading my blog, you know I love to knit socks. I thought I knew socks. I've designed my own simple patterns, I've knit other people's amazing patterns, I've knit 'em big, and I've knit 'em small, I have knit more stockinette socks than I care to remember. I thought I knew socks. Charlene taught me how little I knew.
Ever since, I've been a huge Charlene fan. I was fascinated with the way her mind worked. When I asked her what she did in her former life, she mentioned that she was an engineer. That made perfect sense to me. If you've used any of Charlene's book - Sensational Socks and More Sensational Socks - you know that she engineers socks. She gives you all the tools you need to build your own socks - design your own socks. She does this better than anyone out there. I think that's because she's an engineer at heart who loves to knit.
I have to confess, I have not met Beth Parrott. But together, Charlene and Beth have a fabulous new book out called The Sock Knitter's Handbook.
Of course, you probably know I’m a huge Charlene fan… and I love the way she engineers socks. If you want to design your own socks - this is the book you need. It offers everything you need to know about building a sock - from top-down or toe-up - with so many techniques and choices - that you could create your own socks from now until… well… let’s just say, until your S.A.B.L.E. (stash acquired beyond life expectancy) runs out - and not repeat the same two techniques.
I really love the tips and techniques section for Special Fit Issues - as not everyone has the perfectly shaped foot - and this is especially helpful for altering your sock to fit that special foot.
The color photos throughout the book are fabulous. They’re so clear and show us exactly what the authors mean when they talk about the different aspects of sock construction.
These are teaching sock photos - with each distinct section beautiflly color coded to demonstrate the specific technique.
Each section of the sock (for both toe-up and top-down) has various options for you to choose from. Each technique is photographed in contrasting color to show off the detail.
There are so many options to choose from - you will not make your boring same ol' - same ol' socks again. (That last comment was actually directed at yours truly - the big fan of stockinette socks!) I think I'll definitely be branching out into some new sock territory!
Congratulations on another fabulous book Charlene and Beth. Please keep ‘em coming!
Here I am with Charlene at the very first Sock Summit in Portland, OR August 2009. Sock Knitters of the World - UNITE!
Charlene sent me a copy of her book - The Sock Knitter's Handbook - to review on my blog - one for me and one for one lucky reader. So if you're a sock knitter and a Charlene fan like me, please leave me a comment to this post by midnight EST, Thursday, April 19th and I'll use the random number generator to select one lucky winner!
P.S. Some of you are having a hard time leaving comments. Go ahead and email me - majorknitter at yahoo dot com - or comment (if you're able) for your chance to win!
There was an unexpected package in the mail for me the other day from Soho Publishing. I couldn't imagine what I had ordered, so I was thrilled to open it up and find two wonderful surprises:
It was a thank you gift for my contribution to the Sock-cess article in Vogue Knitting.
Wow! I wasn't expecting that, which made it all that much better. The Vogue Knitting Knitopedia is going to be a great addition to my knitting library. Here's what the publishers at Vogue Knitting have to say about this new book:
Vogue Knitting Knitopedia: The Ultimate A to Z for Knitters
By the Editors of Vogue Knitting
The most comprehensive knitting reference book ever published, Knitopedia is organized as an A to Z encyclopedia with numerous cross-references that make it easy to find information. This remarkable resource contains over 400 individual articles and is lavishly illustrated and beautifully designed, with hundreds of color photos, technical illustrations, charts and maps. Knitopedia will be a joy for all knitters to give or receive. Here’s a small sampling of the contents:
• explanations of all commonly used abbreviations
• explanations and illustrations of all important knitting techniques, such as casting on, binding off, shaping and picking up stitches
• historical and cultural background information on all ethnic knitting traditions
• articles on the design process, fit and ease and other design-related topics
• overviews of today’s knitting world (the Internet, blogs, magazines, podcasts)
• over 100 basic stitch patterns, with photos and charts
While at the trunk show this week at my LYS, a new knitting magazine caught my eye.
Knitting Today! had a cute family all posed in handknit sweaters.
Of course, it was the whimsical adorable Polar Bear Sweater by Lorna Miser that caught my eye.
This is sure to be a crowd pleaser and it's going on my list for some toddler of my future acquaintance.
There were many cute projects in this edition - especially for the holidays. Have you seen this before? Thoughts, comments, favorite projects? Let us know.
I'm really enjoying this summer. When I'm not doing Marine Corps stuff or Boy Scout stuff, I'm reading, resting, relaxing and rknitting (sorry, I wanted it to start with a letter R).
I've been reading Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series all summer. I read the first four books in the early 90s but recently discovered that she kept on writing (after I thought I had finished the series). So I started over again. I've finished Outlander, Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager and Drums of Autumn. Each book is a hefty 700 - 1,000 pages! Now I'm starting The Fiery Cross. With all this dedicated reading, I decided I needed my own particular bookmark.
Being a knitter, I grabbed some random fingering weight yarn, size 6 needles and began Lace #1 from Nancie Wiseman's Lace from the Attic. Voila! The perfect bookmark for my epic reading.
P.S. Wilma asked me to pass along her thanks for all your well wishes. She woke up feeling much better!
My recent travels allowed me to catch up on some reading.
My current interest is Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson. It's a delightful tale of English etiquette and the old ways of the older generation - mixed with a touch of acceptance and modernization of the younger generation. I thought it was interesting to read during the heyday of the Royal Wedding. It made the book seem even more timely.
So put the tea kettle on, lift your pinkies high, and dive into this wonderful tale of love in an ever changing world.
In response to my post about Rachael's latest KnitLit book, my friend Kathy sent me a recommendation for Wilma
Knit Your Own Dog by Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne. I think I see an English Bulldog. Hmmmm.
I wonder how many of you will knit your pedigree pooch from this whimsical little book. Thanks Kathy!
My pre-ordered copy arrived last night on release day (I love it when that happens!) and I can hardly wait to delve into this happy tale. While I love my book club books, they tend to be a bit dark and depressing and I've been hoping for a light-hearted uplifting book. Rachael's book should do the trick!
Here's my connection to Rachael. Way back when in the early days of blogging (7 years ago to be exact), I stumbled across my first blog, well, actually, Rachael's blog. I was searching for a specific yarn, and when I input my query, Google took me straight to this post - Orange Alert. I was immediately pulled in to Rachael's wit and charm. I didn't know how to comment on a blog at that time, but I emailed her and asked about the yarn, the blog, the technology, etc She even recommended her own host Typepad as a good platform for getting started - and she continued to answer my ongoing novice questions. She was (and is) a gem! Her cheerfulness and helpfulness were the impetus for me to start my own blog. So there you have it. You have Rachael to thank (or blame) for the birth of my Major Knitter blog.
OK. So what are you going to do about it? I'll tell you what you're going to do. You're going to buy her book and support another knitting artist. What are you still doing here? Hop on over to Amazon and purchase your own copy of Rachael's book. Go on.