The Dog Doesn’t Die

Book reviews & random thoughts

Does the Dog Die? A Brief Review of Knit the Season, by Kate Jacobs

This was the first book I read on my Kindle, which was a Christmas present. And so, based on the book’s title and the season in which I downloaded it, I expected it to be Christmas-oriented. However, it touches on several winter holidays, and it is pivotal to Jacobs’ Friday Night Knitting Club series, in that it ties up everything and seems to be the last book of the series.

My problem with the book is that Jacobs seems to expect us to have an almost encyclopedic memory of the characters and events of the first two books of the series, and I don’t. There are little throw-away “refreshers” here and there, but they weren’t enough. This book, like many others in a series, could have used a small page with bare-bones character descriptions to jog readers’ memories. I was once close friends with a novelist who had a series going (she eventually became so self-absorbed that the friendship became completely focused on her, and then defunct for obvious reasons). And she expected people to remember every character from her previous books. But some of us read books out of order, and I strongly believe that each book in a series should function as a standalone. This is my one and only criticism of Knit the Season and as Jacobs as a writer — the Friday Night Knitting Club books have to be read in order to make sense, and it feels to me like she had 2 or 3 too many characters to keep track of over the course of those books.

So … Knit the Season (henceforth just “Knit”) returns to the Manhattan knitting store of Georgia Walker and Daughter. Georgia is long gone, and her daughter Dakota is a young woman of 20 or so, trying to juggle competing priorities: the business she inherited, her education and future career, and friends and family. At the same time, various other members of the Friday Night Knitting Club are going through their own changes, mostly involving love and career.

And that’s basically it. Either you read the first two books — in order — and care about these people and what happens to them, or you didn’t. I did, I enjoyed them, and despite thinking a couple of them were expendable, I did care about what happened to the characters. So if you’ve read the two previous books, I can strongly recommend Knit. If you haven’t, well, they’re engaging, light, warm, and fuzzy books aimed at women.

On reviewing the notes I made on my Kindle, however, I do grump that “people here lose massive amounts of sleep with no consequence.” I’m still recommending Knit, however.

As for animals, the relevant notes I made on my Kindle are as follows: 1. “nice kitty” and 2. “cat that nothing happens to.” So I think it’s safe to say that this book is SAFE for animal lovers.

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January 12, 2011 - Posted by | beach book, Book Reviews, death of a parent, families | , ,

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