It is pure coincidence that I picked up this book from my huge to-read box on September 11, but it is apropos. This is part memoir, and part interview...moreIt is pure coincidence that I picked up this book from my huge to-read box on September 11, but it is apropos. This is part memoir, and part interviews. It was published shortly after the 2001 attacks, and though it does not deal directly with the subject, the inteviewees, especially those in New York, cannot avoid the subject.
The theme of this book seems to be "why I wanted to learn to knit and who taught me". It is an exploration of just what it is about knitting that draws devotees. I like that the author, Lela Nargi, shares her own reasons and those of others without academic detachment. She tells us how she came to research and write this, and how the stories she collected affected her. Reading it feels like listening to a friend share. Even her husband puts his two cents in, as if he'd stepped in from the den for a snack. There is none of the irreverence of a Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, but there is plenty of Nargi's understated charm.
I will say that I would not recommend anyone to use this as a guide to the online knitting world, it is sadly out of date for that. Those who read it and want to connect to that world should start with the Ravelry website in my opinion, it is a lot like a knit and crochet version of Goodreads.
I feel anyone who enjoys quilting, crochet, or other handicrafts will like this book.(less)
An accomplished writer who knits, rather than a knitter who tries to write. The quality of this work is excellent. I liked it a lot better than the la...moreAn accomplished writer who knits, rather than a knitter who tries to write. The quality of this work is excellent. I liked it a lot better than the last book of this type that I tried, Julie and Julia : 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen.
Who we have here is a free-lance writer who wanted to write a book around the same time that she wanted to take on a particularly difficult knitting project. She sold the idea of combining these two yens to her agent. A star is born.
The theme of the work seems to be why we knit. She interviews some powerful luminaries of our knitting community about this question, but they are not presented as research. Instead we learn about the trip up to go see the person, their visit with each other, where they went together, in some cases what they ate. The interview is blended seamlessly into the narrative so that it isn't until you sit back and recollect the book that you realize it happened on purpose.
We learn of the author's family, her friends, her students, her blog, and the online knitting community that supports us all. There is talk of copyright law, of travel, of writers and of knitting designers and of knitwear architecture. I was surprised that for a nonfiction book, I had difficulty putting it down.
She arranged the work chronologically, so we come across themes as she did. My only disappointment is that due to the nature of the work, there is highly unlikely to be any other similar from this author. As soon as I finished it I took it to Mom and said, "You'll like this."
All in all, recommended for anyone who crafts.(less)
The magnificent chef writes well about a fascinating life. The only thing that I had trouble with is that he did and still does eat frogs. C'est la vi...moreThe magnificent chef writes well about a fascinating life. The only thing that I had trouble with is that he did and still does eat frogs. C'est la vie.(less)
Susan's daughter wrote more than half of this nonfiction story, and she is as good as her mother (or has been edited to...moreI've really enjoyed this one.
Susan's daughter wrote more than half of this nonfiction story, and she is as good as her mother (or has been edited to be so). I found her sense of humor to be worth the cost of admission.
The two of them are sharing their experiences from the days before the engagement onward. As my younger daughter and I are battling our way through many of the same experiences, I hope to avoid some of the pitfalls by reading ahead of where we are in life.
If I make it past the wedding without strangling anyone, it will be a moral victory.
The practical advice contained in this book will help me take in stride things that if not expected would throw me for a loop. Though this doesn't read like a how to book, it can sure be used as one. The best piece of advice that I found unexpectedly: a good wedding planner firm will save you more money than you spent on their fee.
The other side of this book is a joint memoir of their experiences. The emotions tied to the stories come through as one wishes in the best of memoirs.
I'd read this one again, and that is something I wouldn't say of most manuals.(less)