Skip to main content


Wednesdays are for (review) books

I'm not sure why Kate Atkinson's Case Histories was on NetGalley, since this was first published in 2005, but I wasn't going to argue when it popped up. And I'm very glad it did, because I really enjoyed it. it is apparently  "literary detective fiction" whatever that means. It reminded me of Cormorant Strike and John Rebus, so our detective - who is ex-army, ex-police (sound familiar?) is in good company.

There is strong characterisation and some truly funny moments i this book - although some of the "mystery" is not played out in the plot at all, and just explained outright in the last 20 pages. I guess I read the occasional mystery more for the people than the plot. I've already bought the second one in the series - weirdly, NetGalley also game the the third one, so I've got that to look forward to as well.

Thanks to NetGalley and Random House for the e-Arc, and putting me on to this great series.
Recent posts

Treetops jumper

I mentioned I was excited to knit Treetops jumper, and that excitement never wore thin.Usually there is one place in a project where I am sure it is not going to fit, or I realise I should have striped the yarn, or used different yarn, or the instruction become opaque. Not with this jumper. 
 It was just a pleasure to knit from start to finish. The HalfBaked Handyed yarn is such a lovely wearable colour. After blocking, I would think that there was silk in it - it has a lovely sheen and drape. I pretty much followed the pattern - although I did the lace on the front and the back. 

The pattern calls for just the front, since this was a test knit I asked if I could do it on both and Sally Oakley, the very talented designer, said that would be fine. 

She is from Tasmania and when I mentioned it was Good Beer Week here, she told me to look out for her brother's beer - Ocho. I did, and had a great red ale and, at GABS where these photos were taken, a beer that tasted like black jelly bea…

Good Beer Week 2019 - wrap up

It's been a fabulous week with good beer, good food and good friends. In fact, it's been one of my favourite Good Beer Weeks yet. I finished the jumper on Wednesday, so it was blocked and worn to GABS, and we even managed to take a photo reminiscent of my favourite photo from last year. I am rather exhausted, both because I've been out every night drinking, and because I've caught the bug that's going around, so here is a collage of my good beer week.

I'll be back next week with a full post of about the beautiful Treetops jumper, and what I knit after I finished Treetops.

House Martell Socks

While I was waiting to cast on my Good Beer Week project I started a pair of socks for Leon - the House Martell socks, the second last in the Game of Thrones sock series I'm knitting my way through.

I really like the way they came out, but the knitting of them was actually quite annoying! The pattern was simple enough, but for some reason I could only do some of the cabling without a cable needle, and it was just fiddly. The yarn is Shibui, so a nice yarn, which I got when Suzanne was doing a big destash, but it bled all over my hands.
Ans weirdly made my pink shellac nails go purple. As an aside, those nails also lifted really quickly. This week I've switched to SNS and I'm really liking it.
The finished pattern looks quite nice, but if I had known it was going to stripe I might have overdyed it.

 When it was time to do the toe of the first sock I asked Leon to try it on and he could barely get it over his heel. He took it off and put it back on again and the second time it …

Welcome to good beer week

Good Beer Week is an annual even that happens in Melbourne in mid-May, and it starts tonight! Of course, it is not just a week - it includes the weekends either side, so it's more like "Good Beer ten days". And it's not just about beer - it's about beer and food and friends. This year we are booked to go to a beer and cheese tasting, and a vegan beer and food thing, and I think we'll be meeting friends on four days to explore "Pint of Origin" pubs. So, lots of lovely food, delicious beer and knitting time. In previous years I have knit garter shawls, socks, Boxy. This year I planned my GBW knitting months ago - I was going to make Quicksilver. For reasons that escape me now, maybe over enthusiasm? I knit that shawl a couple of months ago. Then I was going to knit the Still Light Tunic - I bought the yarn, swatched and everything. 

But then the opportunity to test knit the Treetops came up, and it's perfect. I've done the "complicated&qu…

Wednesdays are for (review) books - Crashing the A-List

I was intending to do these Netgalley review posts monthly, but at the moment they are almost every week - I've been reading a lot of review books, all of a sudden. Of course, I don't only read from Netgalley, and if you want to see all my reviews, follow me on Goodreads, where I am SharonDblk

During The Longest Weekend in History I wanted to read something breezy and light, so romance it was. I'm very picky about romance books, and this one ticked the boxes. The reasons for the main characters being kept apart did not feel  forced or fake. All the characters were flawed and likeable in equal measure. The plot moved at a decent pace. A very smooth, well written read. 
Another plus (for me) was that it was not porny. Contemporary romance should come with a porn rating, so readers can decide how gynaecological they want to get. 
It did contain one romance trope that annoys me - the main character has one best friend - who she speaks to multiple times a day - and no other frie…


I don't know what it is about test knitting and reading review books that makes me so happy. Yes, free stuff is good, but I'm in the fortunate position where I can buy books, and support designers by purchasing patterns. Still, I love test knitting. It makes me feel special. When Sallyravels put out a call for test knitters, I sprained by shoulder I put my hand up so fast. 

The jumper I'm going to be knitting is "treetops" which is a big, square, boxy jumper. I'm excited, because two of my favourite recent knits are Strathendrick and Boxy. I wanted to stick with my goal of knitting more Australian, so I asked Dani of Halfbaked Hand Dyed to dye me up a jumpers worth of her 8ply, in this sage colour: 

My favourite colour at the moment. I'm lucky enough that Danni is a member of the Richmond Knitters, and she dyed it up for me, we did a handover at a pub between her house and mine. Love at first sight. I dashed home, wound the yarn and swatched: 

 And I'm …