Wednesday, July 8, 2015

A pillow and a good book...

This week I'm continuing to work on my chevron pillow.   I'm about half way done and am looking forward to seaming it up.


In truth...  I'm sort of loving the colors, sort of not sure.   

What do you do when you're not sure?  I've decided to finish it, and hope I love it when it's finished. If not, ah well...  it's a small accent pillow that will likely be an overlooked footnote in my decorating - certainly, not the focus of anyone passing through the family room.  I will say I am loving the teal color. And am thinking a teal throw across the back of the red family room couch this winter would look awesome.  I don't want to use this yarn, though - just not sure how it would hold up for a blanket - so I may be looking for something else in that vein.  Then again, I really need to not be buying more yarn...


Okay...next up is a book review, but before I get to that, let me explain a few things...


A while back I decided to re-home a bunch of what I'd call young romance novels.  Nothing embarrassing in the lot, just stuff I was pretty sure I wasn't all that interested in reading at this stage in life.  For some reason I hung onto this one and last weekend I picked it up before giving it the old heave-ho, thinking it would be a quick decision.


I don't know how many times I have to learn to not judge a book by its cover, or its genre, or its companions...   The cover alone is unappealing to me.  It evokes thoughts of a lonely Amish girl from some nondescript time gone by. Now, I have nothing against Amish fiction, but I'm not particularly drawn to it either, and thinking it was a love story taking place within an Amish community is largely why I never got around to reading it.  Nevermind that if I had simply looked at a map I could have seen that Liberty, Indiana is nowhere near (or on the path to) the beautiful northern countryside where there are some lovely Amish communities.


While the uninspiring cover alone was enough to stop me from reading this (until this past weekend), you'd think the story line would have gotten a pass.  I had just finished The Last Runaway by Tracy Chivalier (a book about the Quaker community and their involvement with the Underground Railroad).  When I read the first line of this new book, "Quakers in Union County, Indiana, were active participants in the Underground Railroad..." I uttered a low moan.  While I had found it all pretty interesting when I read Chivalier's story, I really wasn't in the mood to read yet another book on the topic - not so soon. And not one with an uninspiring cover.


Well...was I ever in for a surprise.  And a lesson on judging a book too quickly.  Melanie Dobson is a fine story teller (from what I've read so far).  She paints pictures with words that make me feel like I'm sharing the same tight quarters the runaway slaves lived in - sometimes for days or even weeks before their next transportation, or a dark enough night sky to make traveling by foot safe.  Dobson also gives dignity to those same terrified runaway slaves, causing the reader to immediately connect and identity with a character.  Nevermind that I've never gone to bed in dirty clothes I've worn for weeks, or fallen asleep fearing that in the morning I might find myself shackled to a horse walking my way back to the horror I had spent desperate weeks running from.  I can almost imagine my sweat-stunk person laying against cool, clean floorboards; or can almost taste buttery biscuits served in the attic room; and I feel myself breathing a cautious breath of relief when danger passes.


In short, I'm impressed.  In fact, I would say I like this book over Chevalier's. They're each captivating in their own right, but Dobson's book makes me feel like I'm reading a book that has more value as a true historical fiction than as a romance story.  I whole-heartedly recommend it.  And I'll probably be looking for more Melanie Dobson books to read in my future.


Now if someone could just do something about that cover...



Linked to Ginny's Small Things
and
Nicole's Crafting On

9 comments:

  1. Your knitting is stunning, I love it!

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    1. I guess I didn't actually say it in my post, but I'm crocheting this pillow cover. Thanks for stopping by, Linda and giving encouragement. :^)

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  2. Colors are such a challenging thing for me! I tend to stick to neutral, simple colors, but my heart likes BOLD, BRIGHT ones. I started pinning colors palettes on Pinterest to give me some inspiration. I think the colors in your pillow look great! Especially with a red sofa! Looks of accent colors to make it pop!

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    1. Thanks, Jessy. Colors are sometimes challenging to me, too, but in this pillow cover I'm actually trying to accept the neutrals I chose. I'm confident of the dark brown, but keep second guessing the lighter brown and tan. I do think, though, it will be good when it's finished. I'm just reminded as I type this that my most comfortable neutrals are cool toned. That's probably why I'm unsure of this. Fortunately, I look at everything I crochet as a learning experience so it's all good. Or so I tell myself. :^)

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  3. I think your colors are lovely, especially with the pop of turquoise! Thanks so much for stopping by to say hello and have a wonderful weekend full of lovely knitting!! ~ Leigh

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  4. I quite like the colours - they are strong colours, so it could be really eye-popping on a pillow, but they are not overly 'loud' so would also blend in well with the general decor.

    It's funny sometimes with book covers, isn't it? I've certainly been guilty of buying books just because I liked the cover, or, alternatively, of *not* buying them because of the way they looked, and it really can be so misleading. I sometimes wonder who is put in charge of cover design because sometimes the covers are not only ugly but have absolutely nothing to do with what the book is about.

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    1. Thank you, Iris, for the comments on the pillow. Guilty here, too - of choosing a book because of being drawn to its cover. I don't understand the thought process (or lack thereof) that must go into some book cover selections.

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  5. I love the colours you have chosen, it's going to be gorgeous.

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