Witty Little Knitter

Student. Reader. Knitter. Not necessarily in that order.
I read fantasy, crime, true crime, lgbt-romance and books written by my favourite comedians. List not necessarily complete.

The Three Musketeers Prequel Web Series

It will start somewhen this spring. There is still not too much info available and some things appear a bit odd but I have seen worse (much worse) when it comes to The Three Musketeers. (Milady sacrificing her child to Satan springs to mind)

DNF: Review: No Boundaries

No Boundaries - Donna K. Ford

I made it 12% into this. Let me sum up what happened up to that point:

 

Andi: I have moved in this little town in the middle of nowhere because of a Traumatic Experience(TM) in my past. I will not go into further detail about this, yet.

 

Gwen: I am just moving in this little town in the middle of nowhere because back home bad things happened in my last relationship and my girlfriend betrayed my horribly. I will also talk about how I didn't really look for anything serious and had lots of one-night-stands. How does this fit together? Who cares?

 

Gwen moves in. Gwen has a huge dog. Andi is going for a walk and passes Glen's house where the dog, who is just hunting a squirrel knocks her down.

Gwen: Oh shit. I am so sorry. Just let me see if you've got any bad injuries and treat the scratches you got from falling down.

Gwen's and Andi's hands touch. The touch is so awesome that a horde of unicorns materializes, three rainbows appear in the sky, violins start playing and Andi almost orgasms.

 

Gwen and Andi: Wow!

Gwen: I am really sorry about my dog. Also I would like to make it up to you and invite you to a drink or something like that. 

Andi: OH NO! I CANNOT HAVE CLOSENESS WITH ANYBODY BECAUSE OF REASONS! I must act like a jerk and tell her that I don't want to have anything to do with her!

Gwen: WTF? Look, I'm sorry if I did anything wrong but that was really only meant as an apology and because I don't know anybody here and would like to meet people.

Andi: Oh that was all so hot but I only bring bad things to people I'm close to and I cannot risk this. I will act like a jerk again.

Gwen: WTF? Well, all-right, if you don't want to just go.

 

*~*

 

Andi and Gwen meet again.

Gwen: Hi, I still have not quite grasped the meaning of the word 'No' and so I will try to apologize again and ask you out again.

Andi: Fuck off! (Even though it hurts to say that! LOOK AT ME SUFFERING!)

Gwen: So you're not interested, then?

Andi: I will tell you to fuck off again, while I'm secretly angsting like crazy because of reasons I still don't want to explain.

 

Then there's a strange community-thing where basically the whole town meets up and clears out some of the trash from the streets/forest/nature. A wild cardboard-cutout appears!

CC: Hello! I'm vaguely related to one of the people who life here. I will now go and hit on Gwen.

Gwen: Oh. I totally wanted to leave the life of one-night stands behind me and search for twu luv, so I'm not going to react to her flirting.

Andi: OH NO! That is CC! She will jump on anybody who's not fast enough and now she's hitting on Gwen! Oh why does watching that hurt so much? Oh woe is me!

Gwen: literally 5 minutes ago I said I wasn't interested but now I have suddenly changed my mind and won't do anything to discourage her from flirting with me.

Andi: Oh woe is me!

Almost the right name

 

Of course CC and Gwen end up in the same trash-collecting group and Andi has to be the leader. They go somewhere, everybody gets a whistle, they should blow if they run in any trouble.

 

Andi: Angsting

A whistle is blown

Andi: OH MY GOD!!! MY SPIDEY SENSES ARE TELLING ME THAT THIS HAS TO COME FROM GWEN! Oh she is probably dead or dying somewhere! Oh I should have taken more care. The fact that it could be something like a twisted ankle where she would need help but is not in any mortal danger won't even cross my mind (or that I could have come from somebody else)

But of course it is Gwen, well it's Gwen blowing the whistle because CC stepped on some bees and got stung.

CC: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Andi: Are you allergic to bees?

CC: AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Andi: Calm down, are you allergic?

CC: eh...no actually. It just really hurts.

Andi: OMG GWEN YOU ALSO GOT STUNG

Gwen: Oh. Right.

Andi: OMG ARE YOU ALLERGIC? LET ME RIP OF YOUR SHIRT AND CARE FOR THE STITCHES

Gwen: *hyperventilating*

Andi: OH NO YOU ARE ALLERGIC

Gwen: Nope, it's just you touched me and I'm one step away from an orgasm

CC: Is anybody still thinking about me?

 

*~*a bit later*~*

Gwen: Oh no! You were stung as well! And it's swollen quite a lot! Are you allergic?

Andi: Only a bit. It will pass soon.

Gwen: OH MY GOD. ANDI IS ALLERGIC TO BEES BUT SHE STILL WENT THERE AND SAVED US. SHE TOTALLY RISKED HER LIFE FOR US. ANDI IS SO AWESOME!

 

 

And that, dear reader, was the moment I stopped. I came here because I had been promised a mystery/crime story, not a love-story puked out by a drama-lama. Yes, the book was marked as mystery & romance and it's not the first time I'm reading a crime-story that is very heavy on the romance but the first time I read so far and barely got a hint from the crime/mystery plot (the blurb promises that Andi's Traumatic Past (TM) will catch up with her but if I hadn't been told that I would probably not have guessed it) but only the cheapest and most ridiculous drama-for-the-sake-of-drama love-story clichés.

Thanks but no thanks.

 

ARC from Netgalley, received in exchange for a honest review.

Review: Great Little Gifts to Knit

Great Little Gifts to Knit - Jean Moss

Quick (gift) projects are something many knitters are interested in hence there are quite a number of books with patterns for those. Sadly Quick Little Gifts lacks anything that distinguishes it from the many other books with the same subject. Some easy intarsia for mittens and small pillows, fingerless lace-gloves, a cabled beanie, socks...The patterns are all quite easy, as they need to be for the 'Quick'-part but that also means that when going through the book you soon get a feeling of 'I've seen this before'. There are a few nice and original patterns but the majority are things I have already seen similarly in magazines or online (for free). (There's a placemat in plain stockinette with a garter stitch border...who needs a pattern for that?)

For new knitters the book certainly isn't bad as they can practise new techniques on small projects but there's nothing that scream 'pick me over all the other Quick Gifts books' that probably have the same advantage for beginners.

 

ARC provided by NetGalley

Reading progress update: I've read 20%.

The Nicholas Feast (Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) (A Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) - Pat McIntosh

Perhaps you would have a drop of aqua-vita or usquebae for him, maister?

 

Wait, what?

Thanks to my teenage obsession with everything vaguely Celtic I still know that usquebae translates as life-water (unless Scottish and Irish are very different here) and means Whisky...just aqua-vita also means life-water so...what's that then?

Free today and tomorrow on ARe!

Reblogged from Mandy, I read obsessively :
Widdershins (Whyborne & Griffin) (Volume 1) - Jordan L. Hawk

Considering I dislike historical books, I was reluctant to read this one. 

But let me say, I LOVED it and went and bought the next one and the Valentines short the very next day. 

Grab it free now! :)

Great piece by Ceilidh at Bibliodaze: "Say No to James Frey: Why I'm Boycotting Full Fathom Five"

Reblogged from TezMillerOz:

Reading progress update: I've read 3%.

The Nicholas Feast (Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) (A Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) - Pat McIntosh

Hey! This books doesn't seem to have quite as much random Scots as the first one perhaps I will get through this one with less googling...

 

haivers

gars

strunts

driddle

 

 

Or maybe not.

 

Review: Todesnacht

Todesnacht: Island-Thriller - Ragnar Jonasson

„Überfrachtet“ beschreibt das Buch wohl am ehesten. Gleich zu Beginn wird die Leiche gefunden aber anstatt darauf gleich die Ermittlungen folgen zu lassen wird erst einmal die Lebensgeschichte mehrerer Personen erzählt: die ermittelnden Polizisten, eine Journalistin die darüber berichtet und mehrere Personen die das Opfer gekannt haben. Nur wenig davon ist relevant für den Fall, vieles hätte komplett weggelassen oder zumindest wesentlich kürzer dargestellt werden können.

Unglücklicherweise ist nicht nur in den ersten Kapiteln der Fall. Jedes mal wenn man als Leser dachte jetzt würde die Ermittlungsarbeit wirklich beginnen wird der Fluss wieder unterbrochen und man erfährt mehr nicht wirklich Fall-relevantes aus dem Leben der Figuren oder wird mit Rückblenden zu Ereignissen die teilweise Jahrzehnte zurückliegen beglückt.

Da der Fall nur stückchenweise und mit ständigen Unterbrechungen präsentiert wird, fällt es schwer wirklich mitzufiebern. Genauso verhindert die Erzählweise aber auch, dass man mit den Charakteren wirklich mitfühlen kann. Zwar erfährt man viel über ihre Vergangenheit aber man sieht sie nur selten handeln. Man bekommt erzählt wie sie sich führen, sieht aber kaum welche Auswirkungen es auf sie hat.

Das alles ist schade, denn das Buch hat durchaus Potential. Wenn dem Fall mehr, und den Nebenfiguren weniger Seiten gewidmet worden wären, hätte es um einiges interessanter sein können.

Review: From Whitechapel

From Whitechapel - Melanie Clegg

You know how I hate almost all the Jack the Ripper fiction I read?

I really enjoyed this one. Read why on Bibliodaze

Bibliodaze Post: Dead Lesbians Versus None At All: A Brief History of Lesbian Pulp Fiction.

Reblogged from The Book Lantern:

"The doomed consequences of homosexuality described in the sex hygiene lectures were common features in the lesbian pulp novels, which rose in popularity throughout the post-war era of the 50s and 60s. Their covers were typical pulp stylings – gorgeous women, suspicious glances, lurid colours and titles that would fit in at home with an after-school special or a porno: No Adam For Eve, The Third Sex, Take a Lesbian to Lunch, and of course, Satan Was a Lesbian. Gay male equivalents did exist but were less numerous, although many of them followed the same tropes as their lesbian counterparts."

 

Read more on Bibliodaze!

Reading progress update: I've read 100%.

From Whitechapel - Melanie Clegg

That was weird. And awesome.

 

Either Or

I don't think I have been tagged (if you did and I missed it: sorry) but it's fun:

 

BOOKLET OR TOME? Difficult. I do love long books but they are so uncomfortable to read so I welcome e-books here a lot (or just handy editions broken up into two or more books)

 

PRE-OWNED OR NEW? 

 

HISTORICAL FICTION OR FANTASY? Fantasy. I love most fantasy sub-genres but am rather picky in historical fiction and only interested in a few periods.

 

HARDCOVER OR PAPERBACK? Paperback. Need less space, are cheaper and lighter.

 

FUNNY OR SAD? Both...though I probably read more sad books overall.

 

DO YOU PREFER READING IN SUMMER OR IN WINTER? I read when there is a book nearby, independently of the weather.

 

CLASSICS OR MAINSTREAM? Difficult. School ruined classics for me for a while but I'm slowly rediscovering my interest again. Still overall I read more mainstream.

 

GUIDEBOOK OR FICTION? Fiction.

 

CRIME NOVEL OR THRILLER? Crime novel.  Thrillers are so not my thing.

 

E-BOOK OR PRINT EDITION? Depends very much on the book. I do love my e-reader and wouldn't want to miss it but there's still something special about print books.

 

COLLECTING OR CLEARING OUT? Next question please. I am much more a clear-out person than I was a few years ago but mostly I'm still a collector

 

INTERNET OR BOOKSTORE? I try to get my German books in the local bookstores because there's no price-difference anyway but English books are mostly much cheaper online and e-book-wise I don't have a choice anyway as I sold my soul to the devil amazon

 

BACKLIST OR NEW PUBLICATION? Both.

 

BEST OR BAD SELLER? Bad Seller mostly. 95% of my meetings with the bestseller-list were not happy.

 

COOKBOOKS OR BAKING BOOKS? Baking Books. I love both actually but my cooking is usually 'Let's look what's in the cupboard/fridge and throw it together' while I follow recipies for baking.

Review: Georges

Georges (Modern Library Classics) - Alexandre Dumas

Georges isn't the only Dumas hero who is larger-than-life and terribly good at everything. (I assume he's not even the only one in adventure-novels from that period in general). Yet he manages to stand out even among those. He's a terrific fencer, the best shoot, all the women want him (but he resists just to prove how much self-control he has), he gambles on three days and wins a huge sum on the last and then – again to show his self-control – he leaves and never returns again. We learn all this in the second or third chapter. Yeah.
However Georges is mixed-race so his talents are of little use to him. The white men refuse to accept him. Even when Georges challenges Henri – his old nemesis – to a duel he refuses on the grounds that “he will not fight a mulatto”. Late when Georges insults him in public Henri still refuses a fight and can do so without loosing face. Unthinkable if Georges had been white. So yes, the book highlights instances of racism against Georges and people of mixed heritage in general.
Well...but.
The portrayal of actual blacks is...well calling it somewhat questionable would be like saying Sarah Palin has some problems with geography. It's pretty racist in some places.
There are some lines that are, I assume, supposed to make the reader cringe: when a ship sinks and the lives of “many men and blacks were lost” or the captain of a slave-ship who is considered a good man because he treats the slaves “almost as good as he treats his breakable cargo.”
Yeah. Give the man a medal.
However other things are hardly excusable. First there is the portrayal of the black characters. While none of the characters apart from Georges get that much depth (somewhat understandable as the novel is less than 300 pages...that's like a short-story compared to Dumas' other work) the two leaders of the slave-revolt are terrible cardboard-cutouts. The beautiful and honourable one who is willing to sacrifice himself for others and the ugly traitor who – of all things – gets described as looking like an ape.
I wish that was the worst of it but no, there's the slave revolt-itself.

You see, it fails. It fails because the governor of the island had ordered to place copious barrels of rum outside in the city and when the blacks see them they can't resist, get drunk on the rum and forget their plan to fight for their freedom.
They can't help themselves. It's in their nature.
I don't even know where to start with this...
Dammit...was there really no better reason why a revolt of a large group of slaves that might outnumber the guards in the city by large but are untrained and badly armed might fail?

(show spoiler)



So yeah, there's this.

And there's also the story itself. If you ignore all the issues – good and bad – for a moment you are left with a novel that is entertaining but not exactly memorable. Only Sarah is a great character. Now she does suffer somewhat from the already mentioned lack of depth that befalls all the side-characters in this novel but she does get some great lines and interactions (and is so far the only heroine/love-interest from that time-period who asks the hero to marry her which is a bonus).

Georges is also one of Dumas early novels and he hadn't quite managed the art of “padding out by adding lots of side-plots and backstories of people you will never hear of again after meeting them once” so we get a lot of descriptions instead. There is a lot of description of nature and scenery but we also get a chapter detailing first a pig-, then a sack-, a pony- and a horse-race when only the last of those was plot-relevant.
Talking about this being one of his earlier works. It is interesting to sew how Dumas recycles ideas. There is the obvious Georges comes back after years to take out his revenge on the people who wronged him in the past which hardly needs to be explained. But there is also a execution that mirrors a scene in The Three Musketeers (Yeah, for me that is interesting)
However the end feels somewhat cut-off like he just lost the will to continue and leaves to many questions open.

The book is without a doubt an interesting read but not a necessary one.

Things that annoy me in books

Sorted from bad to worse

 

  1. Having a book set in a different time/culture so that some terms and allusions need some explanation but not putting these explanations in footnotes on the same page but at the end of the book. I do have enough bookmarks to spare a second one for the explanation-page but it's still quite annoying having to leaf back everytime.
  2. If that is the case: no indication which terms are explained. No text is so precious that printing a word in italics or putting an asterisk after it will ruin it. Am I supposed to guess what is explained and what isn't? (Because usually there are some things I know that are explained and some things I have no idea about that aren't explained)
  3. The above AND NOT GIVING ANY BLOODY CLUE AT THE BEGINNING THAT THERE IS A LIST OF EXPLAINED TERMS AT THE END. Am I supposed to be a clairvoyant? Does everybody look at the last page first nowadays?
  4. All this in a Kindle-edition. Where you could just have hyperlinks to the footnotes...of course that would require some editing and not just throwing the text out for the e-book edition as it is.

Yes I am somewhat unimpressed with my edition of Georges (though it's not the first time that one or more of these things annoyed me in stuff I read)...still haven't decided how/if I am impressed by the book.

Review: Just one Evil Act

Just One Evil Act (Inspector Lynley 18) - Elizabeth George

 

I'm out. Skipped and read the last chapter because I couldn't bear this anymore. Finished with this series.

Reading progress update: I've read 424 out of 720 pages.

Just One Evil Act (Inspector Lynley 18) - Elizabeth George

There's not enough alcohol for this

 

 

I will finish this book but I'm really not sure if I'll continue with the series afterwards.

Currently reading

The Nicholas Feast (Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) (A Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery) by Pat McIntosh
Progress: 20%
Krieg und Frieden by Leo Tolstoy, Michael Grusemann
Progress: 414/1024pages
Stephen and Matilda (Sutton Illustrated History Paperbacks) by Jim Bradbury
Progress: 52/262pages