Knit to This: The Shepherd’s Life

By Kay Gardiner
September 29, 2018
Looking for Something Woolly That Doesn't Need Veterinary Care?

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30 Comments
  • Miss him much, as well.

  • If you learn the secret to listening to books, I hope you will share it with us. I have tried and failed. I bought two different kinds of bluetooth headphones, installed bluetooth and the books on different devices, listened to familiar books, blah blah. Fail. I wish I could knit and “read” but I can’t. I hope you can figure it out!

  • Just let me adjust my bun and look over my glasses to say SHHHHHHHH – I downloaded this audiobook from the library! And i just happen to have a long drive ahead of me this coming week for which I expect to need listening material so thank you, I’ll be bleating along the 405 to the 5. HOW GREAT ARE LIBRARIES!

    • They are the best!

  • The wonderful world of audiobooks myself period a dream for another who has a curious mind and loves to read. We’re here in Devonshire England right now and just came back from the lake district where we were able to see the beautiful sheep that Beatrix Potter preserved. The Herdwick sheep beautiful black sheep with white faces. So looking forward to reading the book thank you so much for the idea period tartar from the UK

  • Thank you for the introduction to “The Shepherd”. I also accessed The New Yorker article and I’m hooked (pun intended)

  • You know he’s on instagram, yes?

  • I have a bunch of thoughts on audiobooks. You are not alone. I find them difficult to listen to except under certain circumstances.

    My husband and I listen to them only in the car–and only when we are both in the car so no one gets ahead in the story. We stick to entertaining mystery novels, such as Michael Connelly, Sue Grafton (gone, alas), even Lee Child, John Grisham (but he has gone downhill lately). We used to love Sidney Sheldon and Evan Hunter (also, alas, gone). I’m usually the one driving, and I can easily focus my attention on the book, and the mystery novels “read” like old time radio dramas, because the actor/readers do voices and accents. So it makes the long drive endurable. (It’s like knitting during those CLEs . . . ) In fact, we usually look forward to our drives to and from our weekend house because we can hear the next installment of the story. We would not listen to biography or history or anything like that–it takes way too long to listen, and our minds would wander.

    I’ve tried audiobooks on my own for the gym or knitting, but since my favorite authors are taken up for our car listening, I have to try others. I have not yet found any others that are as engaging. If I found another mystery series that my husband would also like, I’d have to save it for our car listening list. So I now end up sticking to NPR podcasts or Netflix/Amazon Prime/HBO Go for the gym.

    Two years ago, I enjoyed listening to Vinegar Girl, by Anne Tyler. Other books, I have abandoned after a few chapters.

    • Let me suggest the audiobook for A Gentleman in Moscow. The narrator brilliantly evokes the impeccable titular gentleman. Also, the Harry Potter books narrated by Jim Dale are unparalleled. My husband and I enjoy the same type of listening in the car to our second home as you do, but we are unfaithful about staying in sync. We enjoy the John Sandford novels featuring both Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers. Highly recommend if you haven’t discovered him yet.

      • The Inspector Gamache books by Louise Penney are also good listening — and reading. And I second the recommendation of A Gentleman in Moscow — I don’t remember how I found that book, but enjoyed it immensely. And libraries — libraries that let us download audiobooks and kindle books at home — what a treasure!!

  • I also have trouble with audio books. My mind just wanders and I end up replaying a lot. I’m practicing with podcasts. Maybe that will help.

    • I keep wondering why I have a problem with books and not podcasts!

      • Me neither. Crazy the way the brain works

    • Try listening when you go for a walk or run. I started listening during daily runs, when I desperately needed some distraction. It made getting out the door a whole lot easier because I was looking forward to a particular book. Now I’ve been able to move it indoors as well.

    • I am really into audiobooks now, after not listening to them for a number of years. My trick is to hunker down with a new one at a time when I can listen to the first couple of hours without interruption. Getting into the flow and mood of an audiobook helps me. I’ve devoured four audiobooks in the past month. I may need to restart my Patrick O’Brian novels–22 audiobooks . . .

  • A few years ago I stumbled upon this book on Audible and loved it so much that I’ve listened to it several times. Only later did I discover that it was a best-seller and thousands of others agreed with me. If you are a knitter, you need this book!

  • Thanks for the recommendation. I’ve downloaded. I recently listened to The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman. I especially enjoyed Eleanor Oliphant. I love audiobooks. In the car, sitting at home knitting, in the gym. Can’t imagine life without them.

  • Thanks for the reminder on this one. I have a looong drive coming up in November to teach at StringTheory, this sounds perfect! If you don’t walk a lot, or drive much (city living) I find listening tougher to keep track of.

    • That is a long drive!

  • Some of us are just not auditory learners. 🙂

    • True. And some of us are. I realized that I have a much better memory of books that I’ve listened to than books that I’ve read. No problem with audiobooks at all, though I’m not caught up with the technology. Likewise I remember languages and words to songs, jingles and advertisements (undoubtedly taking up valuable real estate in my memory), but I can hardly make head or tail of some things I read. I’ve learned that if I’m confused about knitting directions, reading them aloud so I can hear them makes a huge difference.

  • I’m an avid audiobook listener. Since I easily get motion sickness while in a moving vehicle, I can’t read but instead listen on my bus ride to work every day and while out walking the dog. I even listen before falling asleep at night. Two things are key for me to enjoy an audiobook, 1st of course would be to enjoy the story/writing style/author. The second is an absolute necessity – which is I have to really like the speaking style of the reader. Given all this I still only listen to audiobooks sometimes while knitting. The reason being is that if I’m trying to follow along with an interesting story I can’t always concentrate on a pattern. While I subscribe to Audible, I mostly download from my library and recommend to all my friends that they get the “OverDrive” app. One last mention is that since I live alone I don’t have to worry about using headphones at home, however, while on the bus I prefer over the ear, noise cancelling headphones by bose.

    • Yes re Bose noise-cancelling headphones–I love them so much! Especially on airplanes, where the ambient noise is actually exhausting. They don’t cut all the noise–but they definitely turn the chatty neighbor into something much more muted.

  • I recently put the RadioEchoes free app on my tablet, and recommend it for wonderful old radio programs, everything from drama to discussions. I was listening to an Afternoon Theater drama from the bbc today as i knitted.

  • I can read and knit, flicking attention back and forth. I can’t listen to audio books and knit; the listening part of my brain is somehow wired to the stitch pattern counting part. Weird!

  • I often have a four drive from northern Minnesota to the Twin Cities during which I listen to audiobooks. Some of my favorites have been books by Tony Hillerman and Louise Penny. I find that the narrators can make or break a book and George Guidall and Ralph Cosham are excellent.

    • I recently learned that the husband of a friend (he a friend also) played poker with George Guidall – it was a weird fan moment — he’s a favorite of mine.

  • James Rebanks is on Instagram with marvelous photos and often with comments. He is currently having a most wonderful time in Romania appreciating the way farming used to be in my childhood and continues there in present day life. I hope you find it to enjoy further communication from this very interesting writer and photographer.

  • Glad you went and listened to the book! Some books are more suited to the audiobook format than others. Some require more attention to be paid, this one was an enjoyable listen while driving to a knitting retreat.

    Others I can recommend are The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead and Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. Once you get into the groove of listening it opens up a whole new world! I love it for long drives.

  • the only way I can listen to audio books is outloud, at home,bored in the car. I spend too much of my life hiding behind headphones.I decided that walking out doors, I wanted to hear birds and look at trees

    having a book on at home when I am working on a project or something seems warm and friendly. I used to listen to various news and commentary shows, but I strictly limit my news time now, for my own peace of mind.

    it other people are home I just keep my bookfairly low, and stop when they talk to me. too much other people and I switch back to music. sometimes I find my teen/ young adult kids get drawn in and its it’s a parent win.!!