Is it really the last day of September? How on earth did that happen? I only hope that the days of this pandemic and these crazy times go by with the speed with which this year appears to be going.
I'm joining up with Kat and the Unravelers today to talk about what I've been knitting and reading.
I just (and I mean literally just) finished a pair of socks for me -- I waited to start this post until they were truly done!
These were knit out of Fibernymph Dye Works Traveler (sport weight) in a OOAK colorway that I fell in love with, so it's a good thing I decided to keep them for myself. I was pretty much making up the pattern, such as it is, as I went along -- it's just a variation on my typical sock recipe -- but I got such a response to them on Instagram that it looks like I'll be writing it up as a pattern. That means I'll need to knit it again, though likely in fingering because I have no more sport weight (plus I'd rather do it in a colorway that can be repeated!).
I have been focusing almost exclusively on these socks for the past several days because today marks the last day of the quarter and I needed to meet my quarterly goal for Lisa's Monthly Makes program (everyone who uses a minimum of 300 g of Fibernymph Dye Works yarn or fiber each quarter gets perks like discount codes and free yarn). I was so focused on spinning this summer that I almost didn't make it, so I was scrambling this month to get to my 300 g. These socks weigh 75 g, so I'm just over 300 with their completion. Phew!
My other active project will count toward my Monthly Makes grams for the final quarter of the year and will probably end up meeting the minimum all on its own. This is the very start of my Radiate (Ravelry link) in FDW Cozy, Lisa's worsted base. There isn't much to see at this point because I pretty much only worked on it one evening so far; I've just completed the collar and have done about two rounds of the yoke. Now that I've met my self-imposed deadline on the socks, I'll be devoting more time to this sweater.
Reading continues apace here. I have finished three more books since last week and hope I can get through a fourth today, which would bring my total for the year to 78 (NB: My original reading challenge number was 60, but now I think I'd like to get to 100).
I got on the wait list for The Exiles before it was released, having read and enjoyed two previous books by the author, and once my hold came up I plowed through it in two days. I loved this book. It has several elements that drew me in (it's historical fiction that centers around strong female characters) despite the fact that I was largely ignorant of the setting. It takes place during the time of British transportation of convicts to what is now Australia and simultaneously follows the lives of two of the female convicts and an Aborginal girl in Australia who has been removed from her people and brought to live among the English. I gave this book 5 stars and highly recommend it.
After my first encounter with Zadie Smith a couple of weeks ago, I wanted to read more of her writing, so I went with her debut novel, White Teeth, mainly because it was the only one of her books that was available without a wait at the library. I vaguely remember this book getting a lot of buzz when it came out, in large part because of the relative youth of the author (she was only 25 when it was published) and her skill as a writer. I could very much admire her skill in this book, but the plot fell a bit flat for me. It felt like she attempted too much and, at least in my opinion, failed to bring it all together successfully in the end. I got interrupted by a library hold in the middle of this, and had I not been just about halfway through at that point, I probably wouldn't have finished it. But I did and gave it 2 stars.
Finally, I spent much of yesterday finishing up book 10 in the Inspector Gamache series, The Long Way Home. This one was a bit of a departure from the previous books in that it wasn't really a murder mystery and instead focused on a missing person case. But it had the same characters I love to spend time with, the same mix of serious mystery and lighthearted humor, and I enjoyed it very much. I think it takes a lot of talent to keep coming up with ways to surprise readers, and Penny has yet to disappoint me in that respect. I gave this installment 4 stars and already have number 11 on hold at the library!
I am now reading Breathe: A Letter to My Sons, which I've been waiting for from the library for an unusually long time given that it didn't have many people on the wait list and it's a short book (averaging less than three hours to read, according to my Kindle app). I'm only a few pages in but hope to have enough time to get through it today.
What have you been working on and reading lately?