Do I have a lot to say this time about all the wonderful books I have received and read.  I love books, and I love spinning and fiber arts, so books about fiber arts are always welcomed.

{amazon id='1596680652' align='LEFT'} Start Spinning by Maggie Casey is a great new book geared towards the beginning spinner.  I usually do not care much for the beginner books as I feel they often lack in technical and foundation skills.  This book is one of the best beginner books on spinning I have ever read.  The book is laid out well, and even the experienced spinner will learn quite a lot by reading it.  I was pleased that it focused on the skills needed to spin a goo quality yarn, instead of focusing on novelty type yarns.  I think it is important for beginners to learn how to spin with exceptional skill, not just twist thing together into yarn. 

This book has all the basic skills included for spinning any kind of yarn you would like to create.  It also includes some of the best definitions and descriptions I have seen on basic techniques and terms.  For example, worsted and woolen is extremely well illustrated and explained perfectly and clearly.  It also includes descriptions and explanations of all the different options for drafting, carding, washing and much more.  This book has all the basic skills in a concise easy to read and understand format, and would be a good reference for the more experienced spinners as well.

{amazon id='1931499829' align='LEFT'} The next spinning book I got for the review was Color In Spinning by Deb Menz.  All I can say about this one is WOW!  I learned way more than my money's worth with this treasure trove of information.  She teaches it ALL to you in an easy to follow and understand format.  She walks you through everything from color theory to blending fibers on a hackle.  The techniques and ideas in this book are enough to keep even an experienced spinner and dyer busy with exercises, examples and formulas for months. 

She does a very complete job of showing you how to use color, as well as how to use many of the tools available for blending and arranging fibers such as carding, combing, and the use of hackles.  Combine this with all the formulas for mixing your own dyes and this book can save you big $$ in the long run.  This is a great read for the hobby level spinner, and a real gem for the expert.  This is one book that is worth a lot more than the modest cover price of $26.95!

{amazon id='1883010888' align='LEFT'} I have been wanting to buy the Alden Amos Big Book of Handspinning by Alden Amos for some time.  It is well written, and a great and entertaining read.  He is informative and funny with plenty of light hearted humor thrown in that I found refreshing with the very technical nature of the book.

He has been criticized for being overly technical and rigid, and although I can see where this statement comes from, I think the value of the work outweighs the somewhat opinionated parts of the book.  He has a real Elizabeth Zimmerman style of high horse, that, although I didn't always agree with him, I found his arguments interesting and logical, and sometimes downright funny.  This is the book for those of us who want to know, how, why and what about spinning.  Even if you are a more freestyle type of spinner, there is a treasure trove of knowledge on how spinning works in this outstanding book.  From learning to grow and process your own flax fibers to building your own set of wool combs, this book can save you money, and also teach you how the mechanics of spinning works.

{amazon id='1931543755' align='LEFT'} I also read several knitting books, one of which was Nicki Epstein's Knitting Over the Edge.  This was an interesting book, but somewhat of a disappointment to me.  It was not quite what I expected, and although it was nice, it was really more of a stitch dictionary that has many new and interesting uses for edgings.  I found many of the designs to be quite interesting and beautiful, but there are also many that are just the normal type of thing you see in regular stitch dictionaries only slightly modified so they look like edgings.  Many of them merely looked like a stitch patterns and didn't necessarily seem like edgings to me.  I was also disappointed that there were not any lace type edgings in the book, and I had assumed that some would be included.  I does include 5 very lovely patterns that I think many knitters would enjoy.  I liked the book, but I would look for it on sale, as I am not sure it is worth the higher price of $29.99.  It is a good book, but a little on the expensive side I thought.

{amazon id='0760326487' align='LEFT'} I also previewed some brand new audio books published by, www.knittingoutloud.com  It was wonderful to sit and knit or spin while listening to CDs about one of my favorite subjects.  I really enjoyed the audio version of the books that are already big hits in knitters circles.  These are great in the car, or at home, and I think they would also be nice in a headphone for on the bus or train.  I liked being able to listen to books about knitting, especially since much of my free time is spent knitting instead of reading.  Although I liked the books very much, I doubt I would have had the time to sit and read one, unless I wanted to lose precious knitting time!  These would make the best gift for the knitter in your life, and I think they are also one of those things you can listen to again after a few months time and enjoy a second time.

{amazon id='1893762246' align='LEFT'} Everyone knows how much I enjoy Elizabeth Zimmerman books, but I had not had the chance to read any by Meg Swansen until I got A Gathering of Lace.  This is a really beautiful book.  Almost every project is just beautiful, and this book is a great value at the full cover price.  I was very pleased with the selection, variety and choices of beginner to advanced patterns.  It also had very clear and good explanations of lace knitting terms.  The charts were all well drawn and easy to follow.  This is a book that should be on every knitters shelf, because it is one beautiful enough to just thumb through and admire all on it's own.

{amazon id='1847999999' align='LEFT'} The Any Yarn, Any Size Hat Book, by Sarah Bradberry is an excellent book to include in your library. It literally has a pattern for about any hat you can possibly imagine, as well as all the information you need to knit each hat with handspun or yarn you have on hand. It is full of great tips on choosing needles, yarn and much more. You can order it in PDF format right away, or as a spiral or perfect bound book. My only disappointment was that the pictures were in black and white instead of color. However they were large, easy to see and well done. This book is packed with information on hats, and you won't need another hat pattern after buying this gem. It is a good value at the cover price, and any knitter will be delighted!