|I at the Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival in Canby, Oregon|
Sometimes I come across (or rather it finds me) a great book that combines a few things I love together. In this instance it is my love of yarn, knitting and fantasy that has been intertwined. I have recently been learning to knit because I love to make beautiful things and fiber art of all kinds fascinates me. I also love the fantasy world and find myself there a lot with a good book, movie, or fair/festival.
The Broken Circle: Yarns of the Knitting Witches Book One of the Potluck Yarn Trilogy hit the stores June 3rd. This novel weaves together knitting and fiber arts with fantasy. It is about these knitting witches that are trying to save their world from evils. They are trying to bring their circle of 12 witches together again after 20 years of living their own lives scattered from the flock. Summoned by the Potluck Queen, Aubergine, their journey is a long, difficult one fraught with danger. The yarns they brew are fused with enchanted colored crystals and made into things that have different magical powers, but magic has been outlawed in their land. They need to stay on guard being aware of the possibility of being caught using their magics and thrown into Burnt Holes, the place where it is said there is no return from. They also have other things to contend with while trying to get their circle back together: a traitor (once one of their own) that has broken away and has her own plans for the other 11, a lost crystal, and a war between the men of the Northlands and Southlands. Some of the original 12 won't make it back to the fold, but there will also be newcomers that play their own parts in the plot as well.
This is a fantastical story with wonderful twists and turns. It is very well written and not at all boring. I love how the story unfolds and flows like the colored freshnet rivers, lakes, and streams of the Northland Glacier. On the cover and throughout the book are wonderful illustrations by artist Frank Riccio. At the end of each chapter a knitted item is briefly mentioned with a website to purchase the individual patterns for each. The author, Cheryl Potter, creates a complete new world of extraordinary characters and creatures that come to life through the grand pictures she paints with the words within the pages of the book. The main characters are women who each have their own complex backgrounds. They all have their own flaws and strengths. Some I could relate to better than others, but they all play a necessary part in the saga that develops. The ending I had foreseen before it happened, but because of a cliff hanger it leaves you wanting more.
In my opinion, this book is worthy of being compared to classics like Lord of the Rings and Chronicles of Narnia or to more recent tiles like Harry Potter. I am excited to read the second book of the series now that I have read the first, cover to cover. I would also love it if this series gets a large following and becomes epic movie trilogy as well. It is a very good read that both knitters and fantasy readers will love. You do not have to be a knitter to enjoy this book.
The Broken Circle: Knitting Patterns inspired by Book One of the Potluck Yarn Trilogy, is a companion book of featured patterns to knit that are mentioned in the chapter book. These patterns are similar to ones that the characters wear in the story, There are patterns for a: cowl, cloak, hat, socks, scarf, mitts, etc. I might have to learn how to read patterns better just so that I can make some of the gorgeous things in this booklet. This booklet has very lovely full color photographs and charts to help with the making of the garments. It also has a wonderful map of The Middlelands in the front with the Introduction. For each pattern a paragraph or so from the chapter book and detailed description with skill level, size, finished measurements, materials, and gauge accompanies the pattern.
I just was a little disappointed that it says there are 21 total patterns when there are really only 20. It mentions the last pattern on the back of the cover, but says you need to sign up for the Potluck Yarn newsletter and participate in a Knit Along (KAL) in order to receive the last pattern and I am fairly certain once you do the pattern still costs extra. When I went digging on the Potluck Yarn website I found this description they give of the missing pattern, "The Fire and Ice Shawl is the transition piece between Companion Pattern Book One and Companion Pattern Book Two."
Download a free Book 1 Student Workbook to go along with the book. This is especially awesome for teachers and homeschoolers!
Fan Potluck Yarn on Facebook
Follow Knitting Witches on Twitter
Add to Ravelry
Purchase The Broken Circle: Yarns of The Knitting Witches (Potluck Yarn Trilogy, Book One) on Amazon for $15.99 and the Pattern Book for $16.99 (cheaper for Amazon Prime users).
DISCLOSURE/DISCLAIMER: I received product for free to facilitate my review. My thoughts are mine and my family's own opinion and have not been altered by anyone else. I did not receive any other compensation for doing this review. There is also affiliate links in this post. Thank you for supporting my blog.