Talking Books Talk

Talking Books Talk provides news and updates about the Kansas Talking Books Service (KTBS). Talking Books staff will highlight relevant announcements from KTBS and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.

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Mar 18

Crafty Reads

Posted on March 18, 2021 at 8:26 AM by Michael Lang

I love to craft. In fact, outside of working and reading, that’s how I spend most of my free time. So when I found out that March is National Craft Month, it made my day… or, I guess, my month.

Crafts and crafting has played a major role in economies throughout history. Craftspeople were producers of the commodities people would purchase all the time, such as fabric, dishes, pots, vases, decorative pieces, and more. These craftspeople would require a great amount of specialized knowledge about their craft to earn be able to sell their items for more money, and it could take many years for them to be known as master crafters.

With the move toward industrialization and mass manufacturing, these craftspeople were in danger of losing everything. They became known as artisans, working with a special skill and making by hand one-of-a-kind products. We still use this term today for many craftspeople who produce handicrafts to earn a living.

But crafters today are also people who make crafts to support their income or as a hobby, a way to be creative. Paper crafting has become popular. Crafters can be glassblowers, woodcarvers, potters, weavers, knitters, sculptors, and more.

Many books, especially in the mystery genre, have been written about fictional characters that are crafters. I’ve selected a number of these books to share with you. I hope you enjoy them! Maybe you’ll be inspired.

Happy reading!
-- Maggie Witte
DB 82111 Boys don’t knit (in public) by Tom Easton
After a brush with the law, Ben, a dyed-in-the-wool worrier, must take up a new hobby as a condition of probation and chooses knitting. Amazed and conflicted by his own skill, Ben strives to keep his talent a secret. Some strong language. For senior high and older readers. 2015. (This is one of my favorites. Definitely recommend for older teens.)
DB 92924 The glassblower by Petra Durst-Benning
1890. The three daughters of glassblower Joost Steinmann must find their way in the world after he dies. Johanna looks for work, Ruth longs for love, and Marie is fascinated by the all-male tradition of glassblowing. Translated from the original 2003 German edition. Violence and some explicit descriptions of sex. 2014.
DB 92799 The Saturday Evening Girls Club by Jane Healey
Boston, 1908. Four friends, daughters of immigrants, meet every Saturday for a pottery class. Caprice, Ada, Maria, and Thea have ambitions beyond their parents' expectations and must juggle the conflicting desires. Each has the opportunity to find love. 2017.
DB 85483 Scrapbooking mystery series, books 1-7 by Laura Childs
First seven entries, written between 2003 and 2009, in the series about Carmela Bertrand, who owns a New Orleans scrapbooking shop called Memory Mine and solves mysteries. Includes Keepsake Crimes, Photo Finished, Bound for Murder, Motif for Murder, Frill Kill, Death Swatch, and Tragic Magic. Includes recipes. Some strong language. 2009.
DB 71116 The aloha quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini
In the midst of a difficult divorce Bonnie leaves Pennsylvania to help an old friend set up a quilting camp in Hawaii. When Bonnie's husband demands half of her share in the Elm Creek quilting business, she's devastated but soon finds solace in the tropical surroundings. 2010.
DBC04974 Waking up in the land of glitter by Kathy Cano-Murillo
Free-spirited Latina Estrella "Star" Esteban has made a mess of everything. If losing her almost-boyfriend Theo and her job wasn't enough, she is practically drowning in glitter--350 pounds of it. With the help of some craft crazy friends, and even an enemy, she sets out to correct her mistakes and change her life for the better. Some strong language.
DB 65750 The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs
Single mother Georgia Walker runs a Manhattan yarn shop where knitters gather regularly to work on projects and share stories. Aging widow Anita, pre-law student Peri, and secretive Lucie join the club as unexpected events--including the return of Georgia's ex--unravel their lives. Some strong language. Bestseller. 2007.
DB 83134 Queen Bees Quilt mysteries, books 1-4 by Marnette Falley
Four books, written between 2003 and 2008, in the series featuring writer and quilter Po Paltrow, who belongs to a sleuthing quilting group with seven other women in a Kansas college town. Includes Murders on Elderberry Road, A Murder of Taste, Murder on a Starry Night, and Dog-Gone Murder. 2008

These are just a few of the books. Check out more through our online catalog.