A Crafting Interruption – 6 Books I Love

 Almost a month ago, movers packed up our stuff, we lived in hotels for a few days, and started settling into our new house and city. Which means it has been almost a month since I’ve sewn, painted, cut, or crafted anything! I looked back at the Instagram picture to remind myself what my sewing room looked like mid-packing.

We moved to a relatively large city in Iowa, yet you would think we’d relocated to a remote island for the effort it’s taken to get Internet set up. I think sometimes bloggers almost fetishize the notion of “disconnecting” and taking an online break, but I don’t have anything poetic to say about the experience. I enjoy settling in on the couch to go through emails, read other blogs, and work on my posts – so not having wi-fi really put a cramp on my late night routine. We’re finally working on unpacking the basement so I can actually make some things but in the meantime, I’ve spent much of my free time rereading some of my favorite books. I don’t usually post about reading, but here are the top 6 that have entertained me for a second (or third) time during the move.

affiliate link disclaimer - swoodson says

The unifying thing about all these books? They don’t remind me of anything else and are unique. I’ve linked them all to Amazon so you can read the official, longer summary and reviews if you’d like, but I’m a  huge proponent of using the library so check them out there first!

“Bel Canto”* by Ann Patchett

An opera singer and a group of International business people are held hostage for months, surprising relationships ensue.

“Passing” * by Nella Larsen

Two fair-skinned African American women in the 1930s have their lives collide and intersect as one of them ‘passes’ as white; it’s a dark novella looking at happiness and racism.


“Dogs of Babel”* by Carolyn Parkhurt

A professor comes home to find his wife dead, fallen from a tree, with only their dog as a witness. The story follows him trying to teach his dog how to speak as he tries to unravel whether she took her own life or not.

‘Daughter of Fortune”* by Isabel Allende

The Amazon cover photo is awful! My version has an illustration of the protagonist and is much more compelling. Anyways, a young girl runs away to chase her lover to California in 1849 and completely changes her life masquerading as a boy. I never guessed what was going to happen next and found myself completely wrapped up in the narrative.

“On A Pale Horse”* by Piers Anthony
This is the first in the Incarnations of Immortality series and is of the sci-fi genre. It’s one of my favorite series despite having some anti-feminist remarks sprinkled throughout; the books explore the major Incarnations of Death, War, Nature, etc. and the real people who take office and how they interact. “On a Pale Horse” focuses on Death.
Okay, now that I’m at the end I’m realizing almost all of the books have death as a unifying theme or plot point! Yikes. This book is at least pretty light hearted, it even made me laugh at times. It looks at the quirks a human body goes through during death as well as examining the funeral industry. Which doesn’t sound very funny, I admit, but it is!
Have you read any of these? I’d like to hear what you thought, or if you plan to check any of them out! I’ll hopefully be back at the end of the month with your regularly scheduled sewing programming; it’s time to work on my son’s fall wardrobe.

2 comments

  1. kris   •  

    Well I have not moved but I can relate to slow time in less populated cities, being from NE your next door neighbor I can attest. I have a reversal story of a sort also. I used to read tons and sew and be online a lot less. Now I read so much less because I have so many sewing and quilting projects swimming in my head. Anyway, I have read all but Passing and On a Pale Horse. I agree they are very different stories that stick in your head. Good choices. I hope your house will be set up soon and you will be back in the swing again.

    • Stephanie - Swoodson Says   •     Author

      A fellow Midwestern sewing blogger! I can totally relate – books will be on the back burner once I finally get my sewing room set back up. I have a bad habit of reading during meals though – my son has started copying me :) That’s so fun that you’ve read 4 of the 6! Let me know if you have any favorite books to recommend – I had fun looking through your quilts.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>