Knitting the Threads of Time by Nora MurphyHere's an excerpt from an e-mail I received a few weeks ago from the Publicity Director for New World Library (who published this book): "As a fellow knitter, I am thrilled to be publicizing Nora Murphy's new book, KNITTING THE THREADS OF TIME: Casting Back to the Heart of Our Craft. I am wondering if you would be interested in receiving a review copy of this new book. I'd love to send you one in the hopes you will share it with your online knitting community."
Interested? You Bet!! I loved this book and would recommend it to anyone who's a knitter, and especially a new knitter or a old-time knitter like me. I learned so much history about knitting, but more importantly, Nora Murphy's words really helped me realize why knitting is so special to me (and so many other people). I have this phrase highlighted in her Prologue chapter:
"Inside a stitch, just a single knitted stitch, lies the paradox of the ordinary, everyday textile hero. Her simple stitch helps keep the story of humanity alive; her work casts on stitches for the next generation."
Wow! Even though this book tells the story of Nora as a beginning knitter making a sweater for her son, it helped me relive the joy (and anguish) of knitting my first sweater so many years ago. In addition to giving me a greater appreciation of my knitting craft, this book made me proud to know that I am a part of the sisterhood of knitters from ancient times to the present -- and beyond, because who knows how many years all those things that I've knitted will continue to keep people warm?
And as long as I've got you here reading this, let me tell you a quick story of what happened to me in the Salt Lake City airport on my way to California last week. I was seated at the departure gate and knitting on sock (4 double-point bamboo needles, size 1). I noticed a woman walk over and stand in front of me, so I looked up at her and asked if she was a knitter. She immediately sat down in the empty chair next to me and told me her knitting story. She was from India (Kashmir region) and learned to knit when she was a little girl. She told me that she was part of an extended family of about 50 that all lived together in the same house (a large house!). She said every year starting in September, all of the women in the family would get together and beginning knitting socks, gloves, hats, etc. to keep the family warm during the cold Kashmir winter. She said she never learned to read a pattern as all of the patterns were just passed down verbally from the older women in the family. She was fascinated with my tiny bamboo needles and I think amazed to see that someone was actually knitting socks. For me that's a really cool thing about knitting--we all have stories we can share and the knitting needles and yarn are the things that bind us all together.
Brother Wolf by Jim BrandenburgThis book was recommended to my by a friend who knew that I was interested in wolves. I'm about halfway through this book, but it's a neat story of wolves, from prehistoric days to the present. The present day story is drawn from Jim's own experiences with wolves around his Ravenwood home near Ely, Minnesota and also his trips to Ellesmere Island. And even if you don't want to read the story, you should check out this book from your library just to see the amazing photographs Jim has in this book (like this one shown below).
Heart and Soul by Maeve Binchy
Any Maeve Binchy fans out there? I love her books and have read every single one. I saw in my book club notice that Heart and Soul was a new one coming out, so I immediately went to the library website to see if I could reserve a spot in the queue for these enormously popular books. I was happy to find out in a phone call last week that they had the book for me (#1 in the queue). This is a great book, I love reading about all the characters and situations they're involved in. Also, some of the characters from Maeve's previous books make cameo appearances in this one, so you may remember some of them as you're reading along. Every time I read one of her books, I wish I could plan a trip to Dublin. It would be interesting to find out if that city and its people are anything like a Maeve Binchy novel!
That's all for now!