Monday, January 18, 2010

Knit the Season by Kate Jacobs

In Knit the Season, Dakota Walker is attending culinary school to become a pastry chef. She also spends a good deal of time at Walker & Daughter, a yarn shop set up by her mother, Georgia Walker. Now that Georgia has died, Dakota has taken on the responsibility of the store, too. She has help from her family, other employees and the Friday Night Knitting Club. As everyone plans for the holidays and an upcoming wedding, they reminisce about Georgia, giving Dakota more insight into her mother's life and character.

I really enjoyed this book. It's the perfect holiday read. Every time I picked it up, I felt like I was wrapping myself in a warm fuzzy blanket; it was so comforting. Jacobs draws the reader into this fairytale or magical world where both the characters and storyline are extremely likeable. It wasn't quite like real life, though. Well, not my life anyway. It seemed more like an ideal, which would be nice if only everyone else I knew would cooperate and mould their expectations with mine. ;)

I liked that the book involved cooking and knitting, two things that I love. I was thrilled to find both knitting patterns and recipes at the back of the book. Both offerings fit perfectly with the story as they are themed for the holidays. Neither feature anything too complicated. I'm dying to try "Dakota's Thanksgiving Pumpkin Spice Muffins" that have a streusel topping!

I really liked that the book was split up into four sections: Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, The New Year. I particularly appreciated the Hanukkah one, even though I'm not Jewish. I tend to forget (along with other people I suspect) that Christmas isn't the only celebration in December and that not everyone celebrates it. I tend to agree with KC when she points out on page 77, that Christmas "overshadows everything. It's the soundtrack to the month of December, and sometimes, quite frankly, it can be a little much. Jingle schmingle".

Favourite quotes: seems to me that the older you are, the closer you get to your mother's age, the greater your understanding of how she might have felt. Perhaps you can appreciate her perspective, and her hurts. (page 157)
There was one word in the book that I wasn't familiar with. It's "ersatz" from page 19. I may have run across is before, but I didn't know the meaning. Anyway, it means artificial - imitating or presented as a substitute for something of superior quality; synonyms: fake, simulated, imitation. It's a bit funny, though, because since then I must have run across that word a dozen times in different sources. It's almost as though the word is following me around.

This book is the third instalment in the Friday Night Knitting Club series. I haven't read the first two: Friday Night Knitting Club and Knit Two, but since I enjoyed this one so much, I'd like to.

Highly Recommended.

For more information about this book, please visit the Penguin Canada website.

For more information about the author and her other books, please visit Kate Jacobs's website or the Friday Night Knitting Club website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Penguin Canada for this review copy.

Knit the Season by Kate Jacobs, Putnam (Penguin), ©2009. ISBN 9780399156380(Hardcover), 260p.

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