Saturday, June 30, 2012

Middle Sis' June 2012 Books

Well, a large part of my recreational time in June was spent reading The Mill on the Floss, which I am still only two-thirds through. My book group begins another title tomorrow (Thomas Hardy), so I may or may not finish this one. Well written, some interesting characters, but interminable. I feel terribly guilty at not having finished it. I have no idea why I can't.

I did spend some time monitoring a county crew this month, so I had a chance to get a lot of fast reading in on my down time (Mill was on my Kindle, which is not excruciating heat friendly). Forthwith:
  1. It's All Too Much by Peter Walsh. How to declutter. I am happy to say that according to his quiz, I am one of those few who are not buried under clutter. But I do have some closets that need to be cleaned out and some bad housekeeping habits I need to break, so this very fast read may not (hopefully) have been in vain. (library hardcover)
  2. Jane Austen Ruined My Life by Beth Pattillo. Very fast, fairly engaging read. This reader wanted to smack the heroine upside the head after about the fifth time she said that Austen's books had led her to believe that everyone has their happy ending (I'm not sure what Jane Austen she read; the one I've read had plenty of characters fail to have happy endings.). I had a whole page of detailed notes or comments. My dog ate it. Just as well, I guess. Printed on nice paper and very few typos. Good beach read, even if I read it sitting on a bucket on the side of a broken sewer line. Oh, glamorous life. (present from Lil' Sis)
  3. P Is for Peril by Sue Grafton. Kinsey Milhone in yet another mystery where she's not sure she likes the people who have hired her. Interesting twist at the end that I really didn't see coming. As with every alphabet title, recommended. (extremely old galley from Big Sis)
  4. The Spirit Woman by Margaret Coel. Mystery and murder surrounding academics trying to determine when Sacagawea really died. A long-lost memoir could re-write modern history, and make or break academic careers, but someone is willing to kill to keep them from coming to light. Interesting main character is a priest on a Native reservation. He's assisted in his investigation by the only female Native lawyer on the res. It was a relief to see a priest depicted as a decent, honest person, with foibles, but not the devil incarnate. Well written and gripping, but I was completely depressed because every single female character in this book is physically abused by her husband or boyfriend, every single one. Read this just as the congressional inquiry into rapes on reservations was in the news, so it was timely. Not much has changed, sadly. (library discarded book sale paperback)
  5.  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling. Big Sis gave me the whole ebook edition series for my birthday, which is wonderful as I never made it past book 4 when taking the books out from the library. So I'm beginning at the beginning, and am going to try to read one every month or so. Obviously great, but I did see one glaring error: muggle is never defined. They are talking about Draco's snide comments about students who are only half-wizards, and then Harry uses the word 'muggle' but it had never been introduced before, so how did he know that word? I finally will catch up with the rest of the universe. (ebook)
  6. Sweet Shawlettes by Jean Moss. Shawls, my dear gentle readers, are very hot in the knitting and crocheting world right now. Very hot. And let me tell you why--they are super fun to make. I myself have made about 6 or 7 in the past year. This book is a nice addition to the other shawl pattern books out there, but I caution other knitters: there are quite a few cowls and skinny scarves in here, title aside. Some of her patterns are gorgeous and have unique shapes, but there are no crescent-shaped shawls, which are particularly capsaicinesque right now. Big props given for listing the weight and kind of yarn used for each shawl at the back of the book, so that substitutions can be made. Nice variety of shawls from simple to complex should make this interesting for any shawl addict. Gorgeous photos; one model in particular is stunningly gorgeous. (NetGalley galley).
  7. Cast On, Bind Off by Leslie Ann Bestor. Only a die-hard knitter would happily read a book about nothing but various methods to cast on and bind off. And boy, was this knitter happy to find this book! Ms. Bestor included some techniques I'd never heard of before. Mucho big props given for telling the knitter when each particular method would work best. Nice photos demonstrating all the steps to each cast on and bind off technique. This book immediately went onto my Amazon wish list. I have other knitting basics book, but they all only have 1 or 2, at most, cast on techniques, and just the standard bind off method. I want this book, badly. (NetGalley galley)


  1. Oops, you missed it. Hagrid defined muggles as "nonmagic folk" the night he delivered Harry's letter, on the island, during the storm. So that wasn't the first appearance of the word...

  2. Yup, should've used that search function! I was wrong; it is technically defined as BigSis says much earlier in the story.