Wednesday, November 07, 2012

snappy love

Another cardigan is finished but I have been way too lazy to block it, so this weekend I needed a quick knitting fix. I had ordered two skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Bulky from Craftsy last winter thinking it would make a more colourful hat and mitten combo. After a little debate I decided on knitting another Snappy Hat, because it lives up to its name and can be knit over the course of a day. It's a little tight though (I knit the medium size) so I just might unravel and re-knit the large this weekend (quick hats make that kind of crazy idea almost acceptable). I used 4.5mm needles for the 2x2 band and then switched to 6mm for the rest, and as a modification I think it works well. My last version rides up too much so the tighter band will help keep it in place.

On the reading front, I have finished up a couple of books over the last few weeks. David Adams Richards Mercy Among the Children however, is a tough one to review. I was thoroughly enjoying the story and the powerful need for the central characters to maintain honesty and integrity in every awful situation life threw at them, but at some point late in the novel I realized that every moment was bleak. These particular characters suffered unfair hardships and the only glimmer of redemption happened after both had died. It wasn't remotely bittersweet, it just sucked. I was left thinking that it didn't matter whether you approached life with honour or malice, your fate would be the same. Life seemed to be a relentless succession of depressing situations. I may wait a while before trying Richards' other novels.

I picked up The Family Fang next, hoping it would be lighter. In the end it was but I'm not sure I would recommend it. The story is interesting - performance artists have children and work them into their "art" which, not surprisingly, has damaging emotional effects on the children. But the tone is somewhat comical and the brother and sister are very likable characters. It's the parents, the artists, that are hard to take. I spent most of the novel being angry at them and also angry that the novel cast a negative shadow on art and what we define as art.

Lisa Moore's February was definitely my favourite. I felt a real honesty in the characters and appreciated the snapshots of life when the family was young and then when all the children had grown and moved on. Maybe I'm just looking for motherly advice, but Helen's perspective on her children was refreshing - although they had lost their father and although they may have struggled as a family financially and emotionally in the formative years, she allowed a certain amount of freedom and rebellion because she believed they would turn out in the end. She was not without her flaws, but she showed strength and love and resilience after losing her husband in an unthinkable tragedy. Overall, I really enjoyed the novel and will certainly try more of Moore's writing.

For more knitting and reading thoughts and stories, visit today's Yarnalong.

7 comments:

Mandy said...[Reply to comment]

Oh I love the hat! Reknitting then isn't so bad if it is that quick! Great effort though for a day!

Like the sound of the Lisa Moore. Will have to check her out.

Britney said...[Reply to comment]

loving the look of that hat, i'll have to put it on the list in case i forget anyone during the holidays.

Evelyn said...[Reply to comment]

I've got cables on the brain so your Snappy Hat makes me smile! Great reviews ... might need to add February to my list.

Lori ann said...[Reply to comment]

such cute cables!

Yarny Days said...[Reply to comment]

I am loving your hat. I am so into cables right now--finishing up a sweater.

Saeed Zia said...[Reply to comment]

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petite gourmand said...[Reply to comment]

LOVED February
will check out the others.