Knitting Notes


Pattern: Hitchhiker by Martina Behm
Yarn: Rohrspatz & Wollmeise Pure 100% Merino Superwash in the Paul colorway
Needles: Size 3 circs

My Hitchhiker is done.    This is a really enjoyable pattern – good sized repeat, and excellent tv (or hanging out with your two year old niece who has just enough attention span to let you do a once over) knitting.

I really like the yarn – I need to get my hands on another skein so I can try socks.     I should really do another trip to Europe so I can accomplish that…


I managed one whole hexipuff out of the leftovers.


The Heretic’s Apprentice – Ellis Peters

9ef31c048f16561596749706e77434f414f4141Our story begins when a young man named Elave returns from the Holy Land, bringing back the body of his master, William of Lythwood. They’d left on pilgrimage a number of years ago. Elave had been the clerk for the Lythwood family, and while they’re sad that William is gone, they’re happy to see Elave again.

The family has a foster daughter, Fortunata, who has grown up in the time that William and Elave has been gone. William has sent home a beautiful box to be her dowry.

It’s hard to go into more detail about the story – it’s very detail specific, and all the details are important. (Including why the word heretic is in the title – that’s a tldr in the making.) What I will say is that the reason for the murder is actually set up quite early, and though I noted it as a detail, its importance escaped me. So I had a really good aha moment about who the murder was, and exactly why, barely ahead of the action of the book, even though it had been there to see the whole time. That completely earns my respect – great mystery writing!

Paper and Fire – Rachel Caine

fad320aadb11bb2596f59446c77434f414f4141Jess Brightwell was given a position in the Library’s High Garda – he knows it’s so that the head of the Library can keep an eye on him, after they kidnapped and killed his best friend, Thomas, for his heretical ideas. The rest of their friends in their initial training class have moved on to the jobs they are best suited for, but they all still mourn Thomas.

When Jess hears a rumor that Thomas is still alive, he can scarcely believe it, but starts digging, with the help of the others, and finds out that the rumors are true. They’ll have to break Thomas out, but in doing so, will have to risk their lives, and they will never be able to go back to their old lives in the Library.

This book feels like a lot of set up – I’m hoping it’s leading to the necessary show down between Jess and his friends and the head of the Library. There were definitely some things that needed to happen to get them there, but it does seem like a shame that it took an entire book to get there. It’s not like nothing happened, but you definitely got the feeling that more should be happening. Still, I’m happy to keep reading – the set up is good.

Crucible of Gold – Naomi Novik

131a5fefac96db159766d306641434f414f4141Back to Temeraire – Laurence and Temeraire are still in Australia when they get a surprise visitor announcing that Laurence’s commission has been restored. Of course there’s a catch – Laurence will have to go to South America, where it would seem that Napoleon is trying to meddle with the Incan Empire.

I will first say that I did not like the events that got Temeraire, the other two dragons, and the crews to South America. It was depressing, to say the least. But, when they did get there, I loved this take on the Incan Empire, which was able to survive Pizarro because of their dragons. It’s completely different to any of the other societies in the story to far, and I thought that was really well done.

I’m definitely interested to see where things go from there – we’ve definitely diverged from Napoleon’s history in the real world…

Sewing Notes

Since I had the sewing machine out for the button holer (which I have incidentally given up on for the time being), I figured I might as well get the project bags I’d taken fabric out for last spring out of the way.

The first bag is from two fat quarters of a fat quarter set I got at Purl Soho lo these seven(!) years ago when I was in NYC.   I made that one big enough to hold a sweater.   (Good thing, since I foresee this button hole fiasco holding on for a while).

The second one is one of the Liberty Lawn pieces I got in the meter set back when we went to Liberty in London three years back.   Rather annoyingly, that set was not the equivalent of  fat quarters – each one was a long strip instead.     But it’s just the nicest fabric – I could sit there petting it for hours.   So I pieced it together into the right size for a project bag, and will enjoy using it immensely.   I’m not so fancy that a middle seam will annoy me that much.

I do still need to get some cording – I’m going to find something a little more heavy duty to order instead of the ribbons I’ve used in the past.

The Iambics of Newfoundland – Robert Finch

158243154x.01._sx142_sy224_sclzzzzzzz_I added this book to my Amazon wishlist many years ago – not sure where I happened upon it, but I’ve long found the idea of Newfoundland interesting – it’s just so far away.

The book is a series of vignettes of the author’s trips to Newfoundland in the late 1980s to 1990s, so the source material, which aged quite a bit over the course of the time the book covers, is even more aged now. But it’s still a worthy read – it’s capturing a very traditional land’s changes as it moves into the more modern world. I can certainly see the parallels with the changes here in my home state of Maine – but they’re amplified there by Newfoundland’s distance. It’s an interesting portrait of a bygone age in a fascinating place.

Knitting Notes


This is Damsel, by Josee Paquin.    I got this in the summer Quince Quarterly shipment.  I knew it would be either cotton or linen yarn, so decided if I was going to spend the money, I might as well go for something outside of my regular wheelhouse.    The yarn is Quince and Co. Willet, in the Dory colorway.    I’ll admit, it’s not a color I would have chosen for myself, but I do like it.

The pattern is fun so far – the above are the two set up charts before it goes into the repetitive lace pattern to the end.   It’s just complicated enough to keep it interesting, but not so complicated I can’t keep this as tv knitting.

A Scandal in Battersea – Mercedes Lackey

75b27dd3321d49d597246647177434f414f4141It’s twelve books into the Elemental Magic series, which started with fairy tale retellings, and eventually branched into Sherlock Holmes, and has now brought in Cthulu.

If you’re at all familiar with Lovecraft, you have a pretty good idea of what takes place in this book, but it’s so much fun to see how Lackey brings in all the elements (ha!) she’s worked into this series so far with this latest version of the story. It does crack me up that Sherlock Holmes is on the cover, even though he doesn’t have that much to do comparatively with this story – it’s more of Dr. and Mrs. Watson with our old friends Sarah and Nan.

Again, can’t say the story is necessarily a surprise – there are conventions to follow, after all – but it’s a fun read to see how it gets to where it needs to go.