A sad and sweet look at knitting that will appeal to crafters and writers alike.

READ REVIEW

KNITTING PEARLS

WRITERS WRITING ABOUT KNITTING

Writers share their thoughts on knitting in this meditative essay collection edited by Hood (An Italian Wife, 2014, etc.), a follow-up to the editor’s previous Knitting Yarns: Writers on Knitting (2013).

“With its calm, methodical progress, it’s a promise, in the midst of war and chaos and loss, that, somewhere, an orderly world still exists,” writes novelist Stewart O’Nan in his contribution to the collection. Twenty-seven writers, including Lily King, Laura Lippman, and Jodi Picoult, share their stories of knitting among the wars, chaos, and losses of their own lives. Steve Almond writes about the connection between death and crocheting, Diana Gabaldon shares how an early 4-H Club rejection led her to take up knitting, and pediatrician and writer Perri Klass examines all the clothing she knit for her late mother. Nostalgia permeates almost every essay in the book. Whether knitting allows them to remember grandmothers, mothers, old boyfriends, ex-husbands, or their younger selves, the writers have memories knitted into all their scarves, hats, sweaters, and other items. Although a few of the essays are lightly comedic, most deal with loss, death, regret, and similar heavy subjects, which makes for a surprisingly emotional reading experience. As one might expect from a group of writers, connections between the processes of knitting and writing abound. In the hands of such talented writers, this collection is both heartbreaking and life-affirming. Other contributors include Bill Roorbach, Lee Woodruff, Christina Baker Kline, Clara Parkes (author of The Yarn Whisperer: Reflections on a Life in Knitting, 2013), and Jared Flood, owner of the yarn manufacturer and design house Brooklyn Tweed. The book also includes knitting patterns.

A sad and sweet look at knitting that will appeal to crafters and writers alike.

Pub Date: Nov. 9, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-393-24608-7

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Norton

Review Posted Online: Aug. 17, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2015

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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