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review 2018-03-13 20:21
For the Love of Knitting 18 Weekend Projects
For The Love of Knitting: 18 Easy Weekend Projects - Tammy Asselin

This is another book that I was able to acquire for free and finally had the time to go through. There were so many different things to make from slippers to headbands. They are all deemed weekend projects so that you should be able to make them in a weekend. 

 

I did like a few of the items but was uncertain about others. When I get to the point of making something from this book, I may change my mind. 

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text 2018-03-11 00:58
Still Reading
1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up - Julia Eccleshare

So, I stopped posting reviews here after #70 last year. I did manage to read 100 books in 2017, but getting them reviewed, let alone posting the reviews in two places, proved to be too much for me. I knew that "something would have to give" when I became a mom in July, but it's still hard to actually make those choices and decide what to let go.

 

I am not letting go of this blog, but I will no longer cross-post all my Goodreads reviews here. You can still read them on my Goodreads page, of course.

 

Although I am writing less about books these days, I am still pursuing various book-ish projects. They include --

 

  • The 2018 PopSugar Reading Challenge - Just for fun; I am not going to be crushed if I don't manage to complete it.
  • The Into the Forest Reading Challenge - Into the Forest is a Goodreads group I belong to for fairy tale/mythology enthusiasts. They do a 12-item challenge every year within the genre that is fun to keep me reading widely within one of my favorite book categories.
  • 1001 Books to You Must Read Before You Grow Up - I am working my way through the recommended books in this tome with my son. Right now we are just focusing on the age 0-3 chapter. I am really surprised by how many of these books are NOT in my public library! My plan is to buy my son a big box of any of the books we weren't able to find in the library at the end of the chapter. In the meantime, I've also begun scouring used booksales to help fill in the gap.
  • The cookbook project - In an attempt to actually USE more of my cookbooks, feed my family well, and save money on eating out, I've been marking recipes I want to try since I was pregnant. I rate every recipe I try, and eventually hope to pare down my cookbook collection by getting rid of the books with only a handful of intriguing recipes after I have tried them.

 

I am also working on a "book adjacent" project, which is listening to all 150 albums on NPR's women's music canon. The reason I consider this to be a book-adjacent project is because a) I am getting most of these albums from my local library and b) I am listening to a lot more music these days because my son is more content on drives with music than audiobooks. I am sad to have fewer audiobooks in this season of my life, but I am excited to start exploring music again, and to, you know, have a baby.

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text 2018-01-03 20:03
2017 in Review -- and Consequences for 2018

 

2017 Statistics

Total number of books read in 2017: 287

Number of (as-yet unread) books added to "owned books" TBR in 2017: 250

 

So, looks like overall 2017 was a pretty good reading year for me -- and certainly, even without having participated in BooklikesOpoly, the two games during the last four months of the year helped a lot.  The above total numbers don't tell the full story, however (in fact, in some respects they're more than a little deceptive).

 

In 2017, especially in the first couple of months, I had to do a lot of driving -- as well as having to cope with a lot of stress.  To compensate and for on-the-road entertainment, I took to revisiting my favorite classics and my favorite mysteries on audio; and the amount of my comfort reading (or rather: listening) clearly shows in my yearly reading stats -- not only in the number of new books read vs. rereads, but even more so in the number of audiobooks vs. print books read: 2017 was unquestionably the year when I discovered the  audiobook:

(Note: 2 books out of the total of 287 were Christmas classics I revisit every year, and where I chose the DVD version in 2017.)

 

Similarly, while my reading year was a pretty good one if you only take into account the new books I read (average: 3.95 stars), it improves even more if you factor in all the favourite-book rereads:

 

And of course, my comfort reading also impacts -- big time -- the genre breakdown of my 2017 reading:

(Note: "Nonfiction", for purposes of this exercise, comprises biographies, memoirs, historical nonfiction, science and popular science, reference books, and assorted general nonfiction. -- The category "Historical Fiction" includes a number of historical mysteries, which are included only once in the above chart for purposes of consistency in total number of books read, but which are included in the genre-specific analysis further below under both "Mysteries" and "Historical Fiction", and which I've also analyzed separately.)

 

However, the area where my inordinate amount of comfort reading most significantly shows up is in the author gender breakdown.  It looks pretty evenly spread, with a slight pro-female bias, if you just look at the total figures:

("m & f" are anthologies featuring contributions from both male and female authors or male-female author teams.)

 

But the vast majority of my comfort reads (or rather: audio revisits) were books written by female authors, and if you eliminate those, there's a clear male author bias, except solely in the subgenre of historical mysteries.  In other words, almost all across the board, roughly 2 out of 3 new books I read were by male authors. (And it's even more embarrassingly one-sided with regard to the six fantasy and five literary fiction titles I managed to squeeze in: they were all written by men.)  As all of this very much will have to change in 2018, I suppose the Women Authors Challenge / Bingo is coming just in time for me!

 

By Format:

(All but 2 of the print books were new reads, so the stats are almost exactly identical for all print books and new print books read.)

 

By Major Genres Read:

 (All nonfiction books I read in 2017 were new reads.)

 

 

 

(Note: For purposes of these last charts, the books qualifying as "historical mysteries" were included in both the charts for "historical fiction" and for "mysteries", respectively.)

 

So, even in the mysteries and historical fiction tallies, despite the clear pro-women author bias in historical mysteries that remains even after eliminating the rereads, both "mysteries" and "historical fiction" flip from a pro-female to a pro-male author bias once the rereads are taken out of the consideration. 

 

 

2018 Outlook

In addition to the Women Authors Challenge / Bingo, which is hopefully going to help me put books written by women on a bit more of an equal footing with books written by men in the year just begun, I'm planning to

 

* continue whittling away at that impossible amount of books I added to my owned books TBR in 2017 alone (not to mention those already lingering on it from previous years),

* continue reading science and popular science with the Flat Book Society (the current read, Helen Czerski's Storm in a Teacup, is of course an excellent way of killing two birds with one stone -- a popular science book written by a woman),

* continue filling my Detection Club Bingo card and continue my exploration of Golden Age detective fiction, (which will hopefully also go some way towards both reducing my phyiscal TBR and augmenting the number of books written by women that I'm reading this year)

* and to the extent time allows, participate in the 2018 Booklikes games!

 

If in addition to / as part of the above I also manage to balance out my genre intake a little more and include more literary fiction and fantasy, I'll color myself more than happy by the end of the year!

 

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text 2017-12-04 09:53
Excellent Turnkey Development And Degins And Most Unique Interior Degins For Commercial Establishments

We all understand the term business and we also have some idea how most of the companies operate around the world and its various functions. But there are various other requirements which actually take successful business into a complete new dimension. The sole purpose of any kind of business or businesses is to be successful and also to maximise the annual turnover. Our company in Singapore understands this business trend in the best interest for the development and our turnkey project development is one of the most highly recommended services which are in great demand among most of our clients. Our most experienced employees with many years of experience are very much acquainted with the most beneficial modes of turnkey developments and which are mostly related to the international businesses. We have been dealing in the most specialized project over the years and being very much renowned in the market our projects are very much in demand and we also ensure the most affordable rates for our clients.

 

 

Besides that our website is availed with all the details of our services and we ensure that our company maintains a very good and healthy relationship with all our clients. It has always been an endeavour on our part to be able to deliver the highest quality services to our clients and on time. Our commercial interior projects are also very highly recognized in the market of Singapore and we are very highly recommended by our clients. Our representatives are always ready to meet the requirements of our clients and are very prompt in visiting the clients in person and they give their best in meeting all the requirements of the projects of our clients on time and also maintaining the highest quality service delivery.

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review 2017-10-03 12:56
Design Your Own Crochet Projects: Magic Formulas for Creating Custom Scarves, Cowls, Hats, Socks, Mittens & Gloves - Sara Delaney

Design Your Own Crochet Projects by Sara Delaney
Very high quality photos that sometimes take quite some time to load in, be patient they are worth the wait.
Like the Introduction and the story of the author and how she came to be a designer and learn while working. Also a section on the tech side of yarns. Important things that you will take by reading this book that are important for measuring right especially for clothing. Love the yarn weight charts.
Each category has its own chapter with a brief summary at the start. Shows the technical side of how to measure but in simple terms that we can understand. The blank forms are very handy for keeping your own designs in order along with notes. Mine are in my head or on bits of paper all over the house.
Patterns themselves start with a brief summary along with color photos. Calculations for yardage using the particular pattern, formula used and row by row instructions. Chapters are for scarves, cowls, hats, fingerless mitts, mittens, gloves, and socks.
Love the names of the scarves. The items made are going to fit like a glove for the intended wearer. My problem is I never know who my items are going to as I crochet and knit for charity for those less fortunate and sold also at bazaars.
Love that the color photo of the items as they are laying down flat on a table and the next page is of a model wearing them, outside-excellent contrast so you can really see the item.
Stitch dictionary along with a swatch is also included and at the end where the row by row instructions are given also.
There are 31 in total-what a resource of knowledge! Makes it easy to pick out a pattern first then go to the area you want to make.
Stitch abbreviations and definitions are included: Shows step by step color photos of the steps involved along with the words.
Love that they use a white background so you can see the instructions as they move along. I am a published crochet designer myself but I don't go into all this detail to do the hats and mittens for others.
My favorite to try would be the fingerless mitts as most everybody can wear them and they don't have to be a perfect fit.
I received this book from Storey Publishing via Net Galley and this is my honest review..

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