Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Three books and a weird knitting project.

I have some catching up to do!  I've been busy knitting and listening to audio books and they are starting to pile up in my mind so it's time to put them to blog page.

You may remember a few weeks ago I saw Tony DiTerlizzi at Hicklebee's for a book signing.  He was promoting his new book A Hero for WondLa, which is the sequel to The Search for WondLa, which I read last year.  I was so excited about this book that I bought one for the library, then I bought the ebook for my iPad, then I bought the audio book so I could knit while listening to it.  The story picks up right where the previous book leaves off; Eva Nine and Rovee are on their way to New Attica to find a new home for Eva Nine.  However, New Attica is not all it's cracked up to be and while in the city, Eva learns more about her past, the planet's past, and the terrible future plans of the city's leader.  This felt very much like a bridge book.  Some questions from book 1 were answered but more questions arose.  The main conflict in the book is resolved however, the larger conflict of the story remains to be dealt with in the next book.  I liked this book, but not quite as much as the first one.  It was worth buying the ebook for the illustrations.  Beautiful!

The next book I listened to was Cold Cereal, by Adam Rex.  Adam Rex is a fantastic author and illustrator.  He wrote one of my very favorite books The True Meaning of Smekday and wrote and illustrated Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich and Frankenstein Takes the Cake, both very funny books of monster poems.  In Cold Cereal, fairy folk and mythical creatures are popping up in the real world and an evil cereal company is trying to exploit them for their magic. There is a lot of spoofing of real life cereals and their commercials in this book.  If you like Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl books, or Tony DiTerlizzi's Spiderwick Chronicles, or J. T. Petty's Clemency Pogue books, I think you'll like this book as well.

Finally, I just finished listening to The Mysterious Howling; Book 1 of The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place series by Maryrose Wood, illustrated by our old pal Jon Klassen (I Want My Hat Back). This audiobook had been sitting on my iPod for quite some time.  I don't even remember when I downloaded it.  The first time I tried to listen to it, it just didn't grab me.  I couldn't get into it.  But having finished Cold Cereal, I was looking for something else to listen to.  There are several audio books sitting on my iPod that I plan to revisit because they didn't hook me the first time.  So I finally gave this book my attention and found that it's delightful!  The story takes place in England in the mid 1800's, a time when wealthy families hired governesses to care for and educate their children.  Penelope Lumley is a young lady, newly graduated from the Swanburne Academy for Poor Bright Females, who has accepted a position as governess at Ashton Place.  What she doesn't know is that the children who will become her pupils were found roaming the forest completely naked and obviously raised by wolves.  Undaunted, Penelope accepts the challenge with all the pluck she can manage.  This book is the first in the series and so the mystery of the children is not wrapped up at the end.  I have book 2 queued up and ready to listen to.

As to what I've been knitting all this time, well, I've been doing some test knitting for a sort of crowd sourced design project.  I've talked about Nerd Wars here before, I'm pretty sure.  The nerd warriors are designing a scarf.  Each team that participates in Nerd Wars was asked to design a 6x6 inch square - both knit and crochet - to contribute to a larger project, the scarf.  The design of the square is supposed to represent your team's theme or nerdery.  I helped design the knit square for our team, Team Macabre, which is the eyeball you see to the left.  Once all the teams had their designs submitted, the designs needed to be tested, to make sure the patterns were written clearly and that the square would turn out as written.  So I've been testing squares for the last week or two.  Some of them are so creative and fun to knit!  The next picture is one designed by Team Fraggle who are muppets fans.
Cute, huh? So I ended up testing about 12 squares out of 24.  Now they are working on designing the border and how to connect all the squares together.  Once that is done, they'll need test knitters to try that out.  I'll be on the knitting team that will be testing the final scarf pattern so I'll be working on that this summer.  It's going to be epic!  I'll keep you apprised of my progress.

That's all for now.  The library is closed for the rest of the year but you can still leave book reviews by logging in to the library catalog from home.

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