Reading & Knitting – Week 21 of 2020

It’s mid-week and time to catch up with Kat at As Kat Knits. She hosts Unraveled Wednesday – a weekly gathering of knitters and readers who share their current projects. I don’t think you’ll find a kinder and more welcoming group of bloggers on the internet, so please visit as many of them as you can!

I have good news – my library is now offering curbside pick up! Last week Gretchen mentioned that her library was offering this service and I thought it was brilliant. Then I got a notification from my own library that they’d be doing the same! I was thrilled and put in my requests over the weekend. I hope that your library can offer this soon!

Reading

Finished This Week:

It’s been a fantastic week for reading. I managed to find three books that I couldn’t stop reading or listening to – I love it when that happens!

I was hesitant to spend my reading time with The Hobbit. I enjoyed my time in the Shire with Bilbo when I last read this in high school, but really struggled through the adventure sections. I enjoyed it all this go round and am so glad that I gave it another chance! I especially enjoyed Bilbo’s constant yearning for his cozy burrow.

Megan Miranda books are always so fun and play with timelines in smart ways – The Last House Guest was no exception. This one was a tiny bit confusing to me, but I think it was because it was on audio and difficult for me to keep up with the timeline. Miranda’s new book will be published in June and I can’t wait to get on the library waitlist for it!

I can’t remember where I heard about The Things We Cannot Say, but I’m thankful that I did! I’d been on the Overdrive waitlist for this for a long time and it finally came through this week. It’s a fictional WWII novel, which you know I love. And the present day storyline featured a mother and her autistic son who reminded me so much of my own Bug that it was uncanny. I can’t tell you how moving it was to see my own son’s behaviors and my own feelings on a written page like this and I just couldn’t stop reading. This is in contention for my favorite read of the year!

Currently Reading:

Before starting this, I’d never heard of Ruth Reichl or read Gourmet Magazine but Save Me the Plums has been a really fun read so far! I love reading how ultra-hippie Reichl initially refused the offer to be Editor in Chief of this prestigious magazine because of how stuffy it had become and she felt she didn’t have the skills needed. I can’t wait to see how her tenure turns out (my guess is that it’s pretty good)!

When We Left Cuba is my current audiobook. I read the first in this series, Next Year in Havana, last summer and have been waiting for some warmer weather to return to it. I’m excited about this book because there was a single sentence in Next Year in Havana that previewed this novel’s quest. At the time, I didn’t know know there was a sequel and I literally shouted WHAT?? when I read that sentence. Imagine my delight when I learned that Cleeton had more to tell! When I read Next Year in Havana, I realized that I knew nothing about the Cuban Revolution and had never read anything set in Cuba, so this has been a great series to rectify that oversight. And Beatriz is pretty awesome!

Abandoned This Week:

My second abandoned book of the year! The premise of Gravity is the Thing was so intriguing to me: a young woman starts receiving chapters of The Guidebook after her brother’s death when she was a teenager. Finally, she receives an invitation to stay at a hotel to discover the truth behind the mailings. But when I started reading it, the tone wasn’t quite right for me. The main character was just a little too joke-y and in her own head. There are just too many good books in the queue to try to finish something that’s making me cringe, so I’ve moved on!

Knitting

I continue to be amazed by the progress one can make by simply knitting one row at a time. Or even one stitch at a time. I’m still working on my Birkin sweater and enjoying the growth that I see. The body is finished and I’m now tackling the sleeves. I can almost taste my next project!!

I was thrilled to see so many of you have also signed up for the Through the Loops Mystery Knit Along! It will be so encouraging for me to see everyone’s progress and I hope it will keep me motivated to stay caught up with the clues. I’m glad I ordered my yarn from knitpicks when I did because it still hasn’t shipped due to Covid slowing everything down. I was hoping to share my yarn selection with you today, but perhaps I can on Friday or in next Wednesday’s post.


Happy Wednesday, friends. May the rest of this week offer you good books, enjoyable knitting, and lots of coziness!

21 thoughts on “Reading & Knitting – Week 21 of 2020

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  1. I so want to reread the Hobbit soon. I read it once in my 20s and I’m now 43. Curious if I’ll still like it. I’m a newbie knitter. I started in February. I’m now on my 3rd blanket (well I’ve finished one and am currently knitting 2). Also made some fingerless gloves and some other small easy stuff. Gonna try to make socks next and also learn how to cable knit

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The good thing about The Hobbit is that it’s relatively short – so nothing lost to try it. And you can always put it aside if it’s not for you!

      Wow – you’ve done a lot of knitting already! Well done! I hope you’re enjoying it!

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  2. You’ve piqued my interest in The Hobbit (again)! I’m glad to hear it’s relatively short — maybe I’ll give it a go in the coming days (you never know)! Thanks, as always, for these posts…and have a grand day!

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  3. Interestingly, though I loved the LOTR books, I never cared much for the Hobbit. I don’t know why. But I’m glad you enjoyed rereading it! I am excited for you that you’ll be able to get books from the library soon. Ours is still closed, but at least I’ve been able to borrow via apps (and I’ve recently hooked up my daughter on the apps, too, and she’s listening to her first audiobook).

    I’d better get a move on with my Breathe and Hope shawl if I want to finish it before Kirsten’s shawl gets started!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How funny! I had a hard time reading the LOTR books when I first read them, but maybe I’ll try again! They are a more significant investment in time!

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  4. YAY for the reading! It has been ages since I read Tolkien, but I might give The Lord of the Rings another shot this year. Did you read through all the songs? (I have to admit that I tend to skip them at some point, because it just becomes a bit much).

    I really love the colours of your Berkin! It reminds me a bit of the Moomin books. 🙂

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  5. I am listening to the BBC production of The Hobbit right now (I have a “multiple narrator” square) and it has whet my appetite to read in in full again! I too abandoned a book this week – Harry’s Trees. Ooof, so bad. There was a time I would have struggled through, but you are so right… there are just way too many good books to read to waste time on ones that just aren’t right. 🙂

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  6. You’re so wise to abandon books you’re not liking! (Too many people just hold on . . . because they started.) Love your sweater! It’ll be finished before you know it.

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  7. How wonderful to have three books that have captured your attention so thoroughly and curbside library pick-up! My local libraries won’t be doing this for at least another month, but I can still borrow books electronically from three different libraries. Your sweater is lovely and you’ve chosen wonderful colors!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s amazing that you can borrow electronically from three different libraries! That’s so cool!

      Thanks for your kindness about my sweater!

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  8. Yes – it is amazing the progress that can be made if one sticks to one knit. It’s a lesson I seem to need to learn many times. Reichl is funny. We read one of her older books in my book group. Have a good week.

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  9. Birkin is really coming along! And of course you never read Gourmet – you’re too young! Katie, it was my favorite magazine for years and years. The recipes were amazing (we still make some of them) and the writing – especially the travel articles – was excellent. I was really sad when they ended. Depending on what you think about Reichl when you finish this one, I do recommend you check out My Kitchen Year – the memoir/cookbook she wrote after Gourmet ended.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the recommendation – I’m going to see if my library has it. I ended up loving this memoir! I’m glad to hear that you were a Gourmet fan… I think it would have been my kind of magazine, too!

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