Sunday, March 9, 2014
Flicker sock #1 is done!
I forget how much I like making socks. There's just something so enjoyable about turning a heel. And they're such a nice, discreet size. Even if the pattern is a bit of a slog, it never seems like it's going to keep going on forever. (BTW, this pattern is not a slog, it's a just big enough repeat and challenging enough to keep it interesting.)
Saturday, March 8, 2014
The Grey Lady, Queen of the neighboring land of Dena Nehele, has come to the slave market, and she buys Jared. All that Jared knows is that no one that has ever gone to Dena Nehele has ever come out again. But, things aren’t particularly going well in Jared’s own land, which is slowly coming under the influence of Dorothea SaDiablo, who will stop at nothing to gain power over all lands, including killing her most powerful enemy, the Grey Lady.
The Grey Lady is given enough warning of Dorothea’s attack that she and the slaves she’s bought are able to escape over the mountains. The more that Jared travels with her and the others, the more he realizes that things are not what they seem.
This is a prequel of sorts to the Dark Jewels trilogy I read a few years back. It’s a really interesting world and system of magic. I happened across a few more books, used, so I’m looking forward to seeing more of this world.
Thursday, February 27, 2014
For my next project, I've cast on Cookie A's Flicker socks (a pattern I was given in a long ago swap) with my Knit Picks Risata yarn, in the Fairytale Colorway. Yet another yarn in my stash that turns out to discontinued. I didn't realize my stash was getting so old.
Pattern: Fino Scarf by Jocelyn Tunney
Yarn: Schaffer Audrey in the Dian Fossey colorway
Needles: size 6 circs
I more or less used this pattern as a base. I added a provisional cast on, but ended up using a three needle bind off to finish it off, because it was just easier. I suppose grafting would have looked nicer, but this was at least easier than mattress stitch.
I love this yarn. I'm really bummed the company has closed down. I think I would have stocked up on more if I'd known that was going to happen. On the other hand, I don't really need to increase my stash that much, so I guess it's probably not a bad thing I didn't have prior warning.
This story is set in the late 4th century, the waning days of the Roman empire’s presence in the British Isles. Based on some of the reading I’d done around the historical basis of Arthurian legend, a number of the larger characters were familiar to me – the Celtic King Vortigen, the Saxons Hengest and Horsa, and Ambrosius Aurelianus, one of the great Romano-British rulers. Ambrosius is often linked to King Arthur, often as an uncle.
But this story is about the power vacuum that developed after the Romans left, and one man’s struggle to figure out where he fits in it. It’s a compelling story, and Aquila’s journey is an interesting one.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
This is a such a sweet story – it’s all about fitting in, but also how you start to learn to be yourself in high school, and that fitting in isn’t the be all end all of your life. I feel like it’s a bit of a throwback to before YA lit became a thing – when younger books had a more optimistic outlook. This is definitely a message book, but it’s one that won’t bring you down in the end.
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
The true, historical backdrop: Christian IV was king of the Denmark in the 16th century. He’s still the longest reigning king, and is remembered for a number of reforms he brought to the country. After his first wife died, he fell in love with Kirsten Munk, a beautiful young women 21 years his junior. Her mother managed to arrange for the king to marry Kirsten, but because it was outside of the church, she was never made Queen, and eventually bored of the king, and took up with a German nobleman. This book is set during the year that Christian finds out what Kirsten is doing.
The fictional portion: Peter Claire is a lute player from England, newly arrived to play in the king’s orchestra. He also resembles a dear childhood friend of the king, now deceased, which makes the king bring Peter into his confidences.
At the same time, a young women named Emilia Tilsin, whose father’s lands border Kirsten Munk’s mother’s lands, comes to Rosenburg to be Kirsten’s companion. She’s escaping her home, where her mother has died, and her new stepmother seems bent on destroying all memories of her husband’s first wife.
Peter and Emilia meet, and fall head over heels in love. Unfortunately, Kirsten is shortly thereafter exiled from Rosenburg, and Emilia is sent along with her. Whether or not Peter and Emilia can ever be together becomes the central question of the story.
The story is multi layered – I can’t possibly capture the complexity of what happens – it all seems so simple when I try to write it out, but it’s definitely not. I really enjoyed the book, partially because this is a slice of history I’m not familiar with, and Christian’s story is an interesting one.