Friday, April 14, 2017




MARCH/APRIL BLOG 2017

Happy Spring! 

Welcome to my favorite time of year that brings not only leaves, flowers, and warm weather but new books. I love perusing new catalogs and websites for new titles. So welcome to my "finds" and see if there are titles you want to add to your library. And don't forget - all books are 20% off when you find the discount code hidden somewhere in this blog.  So grab yourself a cup of tea (or coffee), a snack and enjoy the blog and find the code! 

FIRST STOP: LAURA PERIN

I've never met Laura Perin but I feel I know her through her designs and have followed her needlework designs for years. And have sold countless copies of her Blackwork Pattern book since it published in 2005. What is loved about this reference guide is her collection of over 600 stitchery patterns showing one-color, two-color, and three-color variations, intended specifically for blackwork designs and that in the back of the book is a gallery of finished designs in multiple colors. Most of us know that blackwork was very popular during the Elizabeth I Period. So I had a to include the queen decked out in a wonderful costume with great sleeves and bodice of great blackwork designs. These designs are still used and treasured today.

Laura mentions in her introduction that in her collection of blackwork patterns, beautifully graphed, "is an abundance of organic, floral, and natural patterns rather than abstract or geometric designs." Laura confesses as having collected more floral patterns because that is what she enjoys using them for clothing,flowers or abstract collage areas, she says she prefers patterns that have a softer organic look to them.Take a look at Elizabeth I again, her blackwork costume has florals. This wonderful spiral-bound blackwork resource book is a bargain.  $42.95

I need to mention here, Laura has a cyber class coming up: Daffodil Time. However time is limited to join in.  The registration period is open now and ends on April 30th.  The class begins in late May. All the information you need is on her website: lauraperindesigns.net. I love the design since daffodils are a personal favorite. And it is spring!
Contact her : 650 - 823-5373 or e-mail her at: ljperin@comcast.net.  Or check her website: laurajperindesigns.net.

Laura divides her wide variety needlework designs into seven catagories and I will show an example of each:

The American Quilt Collection -
Color Study: Liberty Star















The Blackwork Collection -
Blue and Gold Angel



The Impressionist Collection -
Prairie Star



The Kimono Collection -
Autumn Leaf Kimono



The Sampler Collection -
Halloween Wreath



The Secret Garden Collection -

California Poppies



The Western Collection -

Mallard Collage

 
I hope this taste of her designs leads you to visiting her website at: laurajperindesigns.net


WHAT IS BEAUTY? 

According to Webster beauty is a quality present in a person or thing that gives intense aesthetic pleasure of deep satisfaction to the mind or to the senses such a work of art. And I will add such as needlework. What makes some designs in needlework so appealing and others not?  Over the last 20 or so years I have viewed countless juried needlework shows, looked at thousands of book covers, seen a number of fashion shows. I've discussed this subject with many people and find and found many things effect opinions on what is beautiful or not. I would not presume to tell anyone her or she is wrong but I do know what "I" like, my personal taste in things just as they do. 

One thing definite, the cliché that beauty is in the eye of the beholder seems to hold true. We get a taste of someone else's perception of the world when we look at a painting, listen to music, read a book and others needlework. And of course the reverse is true when they look at something we chose to wear, chose to needlework, chose to put in our home. I purposely put some of Lauren Perin's designs in the above article because those designs are something I'd stitch and I like her color choices. To me, color in a design, clothes, decorations, walls, etc. is very important to me.  I am "color fussy" I guess. I'm also "word fussy" and "music fussy" and "art fussy".  Maybe most of us are.  So who's right?

When writing a story or book if I get thinking what would others like I get stuck so I back up and try to focus on my theme, research, and the characters themselves. Then I can make progress.  We all create our own world in the midst of everyone else's. That's perception. Our eyes are camera that allow us to see the world and then our brain interprets what the eyes focused on. That creates our perception. If you have five people at an accident scene each person will have a different perception of what happened making eye witnesses not always the most reliable sources. Why? Our eyes play tricks on us. Think of optical illusions. We are not always in control of what we see. Psychologist know that it is possible to "prime" a person's perception to a particular direction. What is priming? That happens when you engage in a familiar activity, so familiar you don't think about it. If you are asked to do a variation (ever so slight) an error will occur. Just think of the truck driver who because he was texting, killed 10 people on a bus.

But lets get back to needlework. Think of a piece of paper or fabric. Whether we're an artist or a needleworker, the main idea is to transform something three-dimensional to that two-dimensional flat material and make it LOOK three-dimensional so it will give the ILLUSION of being real flowers, animal, people, and scenes.  We know how it should look but how do we get that down on a flat surface. Carl Purcell, in his book, Your Artist's Brain: Use the Right Side of Your Brain to Draw and Paint What You See - Not What You Think You See -$26.99, 
says, "enjoy the scenery, view the world in terms of shapes and edges, tie everything together with unifying value patterns make drawing fun." He also says, "see values correctly, search for relationships of angle, size and position, define form with line and angle, size and position, and explore the RELATIONSHIP between objects and space, everything together with value and patterns. This is what every needlework designer has to consider. Molly Bang, in her "Picture This: How Pictures Work" shows us in pictures and words how shapes make us perceive things in certain ways. Using the tale of Little Red Riding Hood as an example, Molly Bang
uses boldly graphic artwork to explain how images - and their individual components work to tell a story that engages the emotions.  If you want to see how our brains tell us things like what is scary and what is beautiful. This is a classic.  $22.99

Now we address the issue of color. I've seen some designs I thought were great but the colors used made me blink. I walked away from that design UNTIL I saw it in different colors. I've seen the choices made for needlework book covers where I knew because of the cover that book would sell very little. Yet inside were wonderful projects that would have made an inviting cover. Over the years I discovered I was right 8 out of 10 times.  Perhaps those selecting a cover had no experience in the needlework field. That would definitely make a difference.  Their perception came from a different place. Their idea of beautiful cover clashed with needleworkers idea of a great design. Their training came from a different field of study.

This brings us back to us. Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but maybe we need to keep learning and seeing things from various perspectives. Didn't Beauty in Beauty and the Beast come to see the Beast as a beautiful person? Who ever thought a giant soup can painted by Andy Warhol would become an icon in art? Who ever
thought that paint splashed on large canvases would be considered art? Yet, Pollack did something he wanted to do in painting and took the art world by storm. Van Gogh, a favorite of mine, starved and suffered for his vision of the world in paint and died never knowing how much his work would be loved by millions. I know, some of you don't like Van Gogh, but the minute I saw some of his art on loan to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York as a twelve year old it spoke to me. Why, I can't say. It just connected. I saw plenty of other painting but I kept returning to his art. I've



visited his museum in Holland twice as an adult and I still get that same feeling.  When I heard Don McClean sing "Vincent" his tribute to Vincent Van Gogh I recognized at once he captured my feeling about Van Gogh's paintings (and for me his wonderfully written letters to his brother). These are some of McClean's lyrics:

      Starry, Starry Night
      Flaming flowers that brightly blaze
      Swirling flowers of violet haze
      Reflecting Vincent's eyes of china blue
      Colors changing hue.
      Morning fields of amber grain
      Weathered faces lined in pain
      are soothed beneath the artist's loving hand.

      Now I think I know what you tried to say to me
      How you suffered for your sanity
      How you tried to set them free
      They would not listen
      They did not know how
      Perhaps they'll listen now.

We may not have the talent of Van Gogh but we do have our own visions and designs to create.  I know I do.

What about you?  Do you have any needlework designs you vision on canvas? I guess us creative people need to learn to not hide their light under a bushel.  Many of us (me included) need to develop a courage to share our visions of the world and beauty. I've learned to ask myself: Do I need an attitude adjustment or are my creative ideas perfectly fine, thank you? Is my business or writing reflecting what I feel or am I using bits and pieces of advice from people that are good for them but bad for me? Am I afraid to express my real creative self because I fear criticism?

I know as stitchers we can worry over whether we've used the "correct" stitches and end up having another UFO (unfinished object). Jean Hilton applauded her own mistakes and her students'. She put her feelings about mistakes in her great book, Stimulating Stitches. She wrote, "Please note I have put quotations around the word "mistake", to stress that when errors happen you can often make something new and different out of that error that can lead to a new combination of colors and fibers, to a new pattern of stitches or to a new way of thinking." Jean saw mistakes could be beautiful. Jean was taught to stop and think which created an analytical personality. Her philosophy is one of "what if". Her stop and think is very similar to my "thinking time" where I stop and meditate on what I'm trying to do. I definitely relate to Jean's encouraging us to enlarge our perceptions of what works and doesn't work. Bravo! 

I think Jean was encouraging us to appreciate that what we call mistakes might contain something beautiful but to listen to our inner self and confidently present it to others.  I'd love to see what you have created.  I have a historical novel due out in the next thirty day - The Secret Codices that takes place in the 4th Century A.D. in Egypt and the brave struggle to save writings doomed for Roman bonfires. I was nervous about sharing this book but my editor really loved it and has encouraged me to write a follow-up. And to think I was sure it would be rejected!  Whenever I get discouraged I take Jean Hilton's Stimulating Stitches off a shelf and reread her message.  I highly recommend it for all artisans especially those designing in thread. 



POTPORRI OF NEW BOOKS! 


Momma Mia! What a Great Project! 18 Little Guys (Jean Hilton) and Rockaway (Tony Minieri) are brought together in one project.

This version of Rockaway was stitched by Jim Vestal. When Tony Minieri saw it displayed at Callaway School of Needleart in January of 1991, he was as pleased with it as many others have been and gave his permission to use Jim's photo on the cover of these instructions. Jim's Rockaway, which combines his perfect stitching and his exquisite sense of color, has won many awards across the country. What an inspiration!  Pick and choose your Little Guys from the 18 Jean stitched.   $50.00   (Discount Code: Remember to use this code (Mary17) for a 20% discount for this book and all the other new books listed in this and past blogs.)


Other New Titles:

Adams, Sean - The Designer's Dictionary of Color - This book is considered a groundbreaking guide to the origins and design use of key colors from an award-winning designer. The author provides an in-depth look at 30 colors key to art and graphic design. Organized by spectrum, in color-by-color sections for easy use, this book documents each hue with charts showing color range and palette variations. Chapters detail each color's creative history and cultural associations, with examples of color use that extend from the artistic to the utilitarian. This book opens up the world of color for all those who seek to harness its incredible power.  $24.95


Aldridge, Kelley - Royal School of Needlework: Raised Embroidery - This book features an introduction to the RSN and its prestigious heritage it reveals the history and context of raised embroidery and showcases galleries of inspiring raised embroidery work. This is primarily a practical, instructional guide that offers a complete grounding in the techniques you need for this embroidery. It also contains a comprehensive stitch guide and leads the reader through each technique using clear step-by-step photos and easy-to-follow expert guidance. The book contains three beautiful projects that put these techniques into practice and showcase additional advanced techniques.  $35.00


Chamberlain, Ruth - Beginner's Guide to Goldwork - This popular and enduring book was first published in 2006 and is still held in high regard today. It now returns as a Search Press Classic, with the addition of a preface by the illustrious embroider and world-renowned blogger Mary Corbet. Ruth Chamberlain aims to teach the reader how to create beautiful goldwork motifs, which together form an impressive sampler. Covering a range of designs, stitches and techniques, with templates throughout and examples of the author's inspiring work, this book provides a firm basis on which the embroiderer can build future projects.  $19.95



Cetti, Livia - The Exquisite Book of Paper Flower Transformations - Cetti will teach you how to play with size, shape, color, and texture to create 25 vibrant single stems in a variety of natural shapes - globes, spikes, bells, saucer, rectangles, cones, and arcs - including hydrangeas, coral charm peonies, honeysuckles, and paperwhites. Then, you'll use these elemental shapes to build the 15 bright, abundant arrangements, including bold wreaths, bountiful bouquets, fantastical gilded wall art, and blooming garlands. Introducing never before seen techniques for dyeing paper and creating moldable leaves and petals.  $24.95



Ciotti, Donatella - Soutache: How to make beautiful braid-and-bead embroidered jewellery and accessories - Soutache is the traditional craft of creating jewellery and embellishments from looped and stitched soutache braid. In this colourful book the author provides the guidance and inspiration you need to create beautiful contemporary designs for bracelets, necklaces, earrings and a whole host of adornments and fashionable accessories. Using a few, readily available tools and materials, embroiderers, sewers, and jewellery-makers alike will soon be creating eye-catching statement pieces in jewel-like colours, incorporating beads and gems for added opulence.  $17.95




Hill, Michele - Stitching with Beatrix Potter - This book gathers together 10 easy yet elegant projects celebrating the life and talents of Beatrix Potter. With 10 applique and 6 embroidery designs, even beginning stitchers can work with hexagons to crate a beautiful embroidered quilt, stitch up a cushion based on The Tailor of Gloucester, applique a wool storage box, and construct a beautiful wedding quilt based on one from Beatrix Potter's home. Plus, all-of-the-designs can easily be adapted - just add a dash of imagination to create bags, appliqued pinafores, or embroidered gifts. Stitch by hand and by machine. Learn about the life and work of Beatrix Potter with historical vignettes. Amazing applique tips from best-selling author of William Morris in Applique and More William Morris in Applique.   $22.95




Merrill, Jane, Gail DeMeyere and Karen Ben-Horin - The Sweater: A History - Originally knit as underwear, the sweater is a practical garment with homely beginnings and has evolved into a fashion statement. The book traces the sweater's 300 year history telling the story of its construction, national traditions, fads and fashions, and accessories. Learn about the panoply of yarns, Nordic patterns, buttons, vintage collars, runway designs, manufacturing, and today's exploration of form, structure, and material of this hand craft.  $39.99





Miller, Lesley Ellis - Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion -  Cristobal Balenciaga (1875-1972) remains one of the most revered and enigmatic of fashion designers. Here, marvelous illustrations reveal why he is renowned for exceptional tailoring, sculptural shapes, deft manipulation of textiles, and an dramatic use of color. His glamorous clientele included Grace Kelly, Jackie Kennedy, Pauline de Rothschild, Ava Gardner, and Marlene Dietrich; many of his clients dressed only in his creations. This book also looks at the Spanish-born couturier's designs and business practice, and places him in the context of the time, looking at the country in which he learned his trade and international fashion scene. 160 color illustrations.  $45.00



Owen, Roderick and Terry Newhouse Flynn - Andean Sling Braids: New Designs for Textile Artists - Learn to make the decorative braids used in the sling-making traditions of Peru Bolivia; this detailed guide, including400 step-by-step photos plus hundreds of diagrams, teaches the technique and over 100 designs for weavers, craftspeople, jewelry designers, basket weavers, and others interested in using braids for embellishment. In-depth detailed instructions are given, along with clear diagrams; recommended braiding yarns for lings and kumihumo; detailed set-up, making, and finishing instructions; and many fascinating contemporary applications. This book introduces a new piece of equipment, the core frame, and gives instructions for making it from wood and dowels. When the core frame is used with a braiding stand and bobbins, a wide variety of core-carrying braids become accessible to kumihimo braiders. Most of the braids, from 4 to 40 strands can be made on a braiding card/disk, and 50 patterns can be made on the stand without a frame.  $39.99




Moad, Elizabeth - Paper Folded Flowers - With step-by-step photos for guidance, Elizabeth shows you how to make 21 simple, yet effective paper flower embellishments, from greeting card adornments to flower bunting and decorations that brighten your home. Learn how to apply simple folding techniques such as origami, kirigami and teabag folding to create beautiful blooms. These projects range from straightforward concertina-fold flowers to elaborate and elegant paper roses.  $15.95


Paper Panda - Paper Panda's Guide to Papercutting - Paper Panda (Louise Firchau) is a papercutting superstar with thousands of fans eager to purchase her distinctive and highly sought after papercut designs. In this book, she shows you not only how she

does these designs, what inspires her and how she works, but how to do the 20 papercut projects she's included here along with a template, which is reproduced at full-size at the back of the book. The designs are simple enough for beginners, though interesting enough to inspire more advanced papercutters. The projects themselves include cards, decorations, and mounted and framed pictures to hand on the wall, all using a variety of coloured and patterned papers to show them off.  $24.95


Mystery Corner 



Please meet Kathleen Bridge

The minute I saw the titles of the mysteries she's written I was hooked for they take place on Long Island, New York where I was born and raised. I wondered if she came from there too. But no, she was born in El Paso, Texas.  But she lives there now and is an antiques and vintage dealer and has contributed to Country Living Magazine. Her mystery series: Hamptons Homes and Garden Mysteries take place in the posh Hamptons where the rich and famous like Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton and others still playtoday. The Hamptons have been called, "the playground of the rich and famous."

I didn't grow up in the Hamptons but I feel very fortunate to have been raised in the fifties on Long Island a place full of great history, great schools, great beaches and  farmlands and an easy trip by train or car to New York.  Long Island is one of the bigger islands in the USA but is only 12-20 miles wide and 118 miles
long, hence the name "long".  The native American name for Long Island is Paumanok, meaning 'The Island that pays tribute" and was occupied by a number of peaceful tribes before the Dutch and English arrived in the 1600's.  Houses of that time period still are inhabited today. Many towns took Native American names. 

Charles Lindbergh took off from Roosevelt Airfield, Garden City Long Island on his famous 1927 flight from there to Paris. Captain William Kidd took port there and the book Jaws was written because the author, Peter Benchley, was on a fishing boat enjoying deep sea fishing when a giant great white shark was caught off Montauk, Long Island.  The North Shore of the island has been called the Gold Coast as it is dotted with mansions, former homes of the wealthy such as the Vanderbilts, the Roosevelts, Getty, and more current Billy Joel, the singer and songwriter. 

I grew up in Hempstead, Long Island where churches were from the Revolutionary war and the cemeteries had ancient headstones from the 1600's. I loved the white sand Jones Beach, visiting the mansions, taking school trips into Yankee Stadium, The New York Times, and the UN.  My mom took us to the Bronx Zoo, the great museums of New York City, the Planetarium, Radio City Music Hall for shows with the Rockettes and sent me on to plays on Broadway with four of my friends as birthday parties.  We were hardly rich and famous but I grew up appreciating the arts, history and what this island world had to offer.

Why did I leave Long Island?  The weather! I was not made for snow and ice, fog, rain, and high humidity.  My great uncle George sent yearly subscriptions to Arizona Highway during my childhood and I devoured each issue discovering where I truly belonged: in the dry heat with many Native American cultures, the Grand Canyon and Sedona among other wonderful places to visit. So here I am many years later with no regrets and still loving my adopted home of Arizona. 

Long Island will always have a special place in my heart so I was happy to discover this mystery series by Kathleen Bridge.  Now I can visit parts of Long Island through her.  I hope you will too. 

Better Homes and Corpses Mystery #1 - After Meg Barrett found her fiancé still has designs on his ex-wife, she decided it was time to leave her job at a top home and garden magazine in New York City to go to Montauk, Long Island, only to find decorating can sometimes lead to detecting. In between scouring estate sales for her new interior design business, Cottages by the Sea, Meg visits swanky East Hampton home of her old college roommate, Jillian Spenser. But instead of seeing how the other half lives she learns how the other half dies. Jillian's mother, known as the Queen Mother of the Hamptons, has been murdered. When Meg helps inventory the Spensers valuable estate for the insurance company, she finds herself in the thick of things. Cataloging antiques and art loses its charm when Meg discovers that the Spenser family has been hiding dangerous secrets, which may have furnished the murderer with a motive.   $7.99

Hearse and Gardens - Mystery #2 - To keep her mind off the legal battle over the oceanfront cottage she's trying to buy, Meg agrees to help het friend inventory and clear out furniture from the Montauk estate of wealthy art broker, Harrison Falk. But the job takes a terrifying turn when Meg discovers a skeleton in a hidden room of one of the estate's many bungalows.  $7.99









Ghostal Living - Mystery #3 - Ghostal Living - The first Sag Harbor Antiquarian Book and Ephemera Fair is right around the corner, and meg has her hands full decorating rooms at the Bibliophile Bed and Breakfast for wealthy rare book collector Franklin Hollingsworth. Rumor has it Hollingsworth is in possession of an unpublished manuscript written by F. Scott Fitzgerald. When that manuscript's authenticator is found dead at the bottom of a cliff, Meg suspects a killer is on the loose. Rare books start disappearing from the Bed and Breakfast and Meg sees a connector between the stolen books and the deceased authenticator. With the fair looming, she finds herself caught up in catching a killer and thief before another victim is booked for death.  $7.99


AND ON TO SOME MORE COZY MYSTERIES ......

Cattrell, Bailey - Daisies for Innocence - (Enchanted Garden Mystery #1) - Ellie's life has blossomed in Poppyville, California, since she opened Scents and Nonsense, a custom-made perfume store. Her skills with aromas and botanical essences --some from her very own garden. Her perfumes can evoke emotions, bring about change, or simply make people happy. Customers are flocking to the store to buy her wares or just sit in her beautiful garden, sip tea and enjoy homemade cookies. But she smells trouble when she learns that her part-time assistant Josie is dating her ex. And before she can tell Josie to beware of his charms, she finds Josie dead in the Enchanted Garden. $7.99

Nightshade for Warning (Enchanted Garden Mystery #2) - Ellie's business is booming and she even lives right next to the garden with her corgi, Dash, and her cat, Nabokov, in a compact, tiny house. She is excited to hear that a journalist is going to write a feature about her home and garden life for a national magazine. But the journalist is found dead, and suspicion falls on the last person to see him who happens to be Ellie's brother's girlfriend. So before everything goes to seed, Ellie must rely on her powers: observational and otherwise - to pick out the real killer from an every-expanding bouquet of culprits.  $7.99

Harris, Sherry - Tagged for Death ( A Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery #1) - Starting your life over at age thirty-eight isn't easy, but that's what Sarah Winston finds herself facing when her husband CJ runs off with a 19-year-old temptress named Tiffany. Sarah's therapy happily involves hitting all the garage and tag sales in and around her small town of Ellington, Massachusetts. If only she could turn her love for bargain hunting into a full-time career. After returning from a very successful day searching for yard sale treasures, Sarah finds a grisly surprise in one of her bags: a freshly bloodied shirt that undoubtedly belongs to her ex, DJ who now happens to be Ellington's chief of police. It that's not bad enough, it seems Tiffany has gone missing. Now it's up to Sarah to prove that her cold-hearted ex is not a cold-blooded killer.  $7.99

The Longest Yard Sale - ( A Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery #2) - When Sarah turns Ellington, Massachusetts into New England's largest garage sale for a day, it's the small town's biggest event since the start of the Revolutionary War. Then a painting goes missing and the lifeless body of an Air Force officer is found in Carol Carson's painting studio, his face framed with the murder weapon - a metal picture frame. Sarah is definitely on this case but it's not easy sorting through increasingly strange clues that point to cheating spouses. $7.99


All Murders Final! (Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery #3) - Sarah begins a new step when she starts her virtual garage sale. But what began as a fun way to run garage sales during the long New England winter has become a nightmare of managing people and putting out fires. Online, she can avoid the crowds --but not the crazies. When a client is murdered, its time for Sarah to seek the help of her ex--CJ Hooker, chief of police. Together they search online and off for the killer. Can they solve this crime before someone else gets tagged?  $7.99


A Good Day to Buy - (Sarah W. Garage Sale Mystery #4) - When Sarah's estranged brother Luke shows up on her doorstep asking her not to tell anyone he's in town --especially her ex, the chief of police-- the timing is strange, to say the least. Hours earlier, garage sale was taped off as a crime scene following the discovery of a murdered Vietnam vet and his gravely injured wife -- her clients, the Spencers. All Luke will tell Sarah is that he's undercover, investigating a story. Before she can learn more, he vanishes. Rummaging through his things for a clue to his whereabouts, Sarah comes upon a list of veterans and realizes that to find her brother, she'll have to figure out who killed Mr. Spencer. And all without telling her ex..   $7.99


Cochran, Peg - Dead and Berried - (Cranberry Cove Mystery #3) - It's June in Cranberry Cove and Monica Albertson's plan to sell cranberry relish to chain stores is taking off. The cranberry bogs are in bloom, and local beekeeper Rick Taylor and his assistant Lori Wenk are bringing in bees to pollinate the blossoms. When a fatal prick fells Lori, the buzz is that Rick is to blame. In trying to clear her friend's name, Monica discovers that more than a few people in Cranberry Cove have felt the power of Lori's venom, and it looks as if this time she may have agitated the hive a bit too much. With the fate of the farm on the line, Monica must get to the bottom of the crime before another victim gets stung.  $7.99


Cox, Mollie Bryan - Death Among the Doilies (Cora Crafts Mystery #1 - For thirty-something blogger Cora Chevalier, small-town Indigo Gap, North Carolina, seems like the perfect place to reinvent her life. Shedding a stressful past as a counselor for a women's shelter, Cora is pouring all her talents -- and most of her savings into a craft retreat business, with help from close pal and resident potter Jane Starr. Between transforming her Victorian estate into a crafter's paradise and babysitting Jane's daughter the new entrepreneur has no time for distractions. Especially rumors about the murder of a local school librarian. But when Jane's fingerprints match those found at the grisly crime scene, Cora not only worries about her friend, but her own reputation. With angry townsfolk eager for justice and both Jane's innocence and the retreat at risk, she must rely on her creative chops to unlace the truth behind the beloved librarian's disturbing demise.  $7.99


Cox, Mollie Bryan - No Charm Intended (Cora Crafts Mystery #2) - Settling into her new life and career in small-town Indigo Gap, North Carolina, Cora Chevalier is preparing to host a "wildcrafting retreat" at her Victorian home. But then beloved nanny, Gracie Wyke goes missing. Amidst Cora leading guests in nature hikes, rock painting and making clay charms, she and her business partner, Jane, team up with Gracie's boyfriend Paul, to launch their own investigation. They take Paul in believing he's not the suspect the police believe him to be but as they discover new clues and a body turns up at a local abandoned amusement park, they begin to question their decision.  $7.99

WELCOME TO RUTH KERN BOOKS!

I hope you enjoyed your visit. If you haven't heard of you before I'd like to introduce you to our business. We've been in business over 25 years. We set up book shops at both the ANG and EGA Nationals and regionals and other needlework organizations.

Can't find a certain book? Give us a call whether the title is in or out-or-print. We have a website as well as this blog. It is:ruthkernbooks.com

Questions? Give us a call Monday -thru Saturday (602-943-0738) between 8am and 6pm. Yes, we are the people who never change our clocks forward or backwards. If it goes to message I'm probably in the middle of helping Mark or taking books to the post office. PLEASE leave a message and I will return your call ASAP.  If you prefer you can e-mail me at: rkern3@mindspring.com. To reach us by mail: Ruth Kern Books  7235 N. 9th Avenue, Phoenix,AZ 85021.

IMPORTANT! Don't forget to find the discount code in this blog that gives you a 20% discount on any new book you order.

I look forward to having you back:  New blog: June 15th 2017.






Tuesday, February 14, 2017


March/April Issue due out on April 15th 2017 - I'll See You Then!  Happy Spring!

        JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2017 BLOG
      A good book is the best of friends, the same today and forever.  Martin Farquhar Tupper 1810-1889                       

A TRIP TO KOREA AND JAPAN

Korean Girl
I'm going to start with South Korea and then move on to Japan. My friend Charlene William and her friend Sally traveled to the far east this past fall.  South Korea was a new adventure for both but these two travelers have both been to Japan before and looking forward to more return visits.  They loved both countries. You know that old saying that a picture is worth a 1000 words so I decided you'd enjoy learning about these fascinating things through Charlene's marvelous photography. 

Korea -
Charlene and her friend Sally arrived in South Korea during a festival and captured these photos of these huge pair of dragons made out of chrysanthemums.  What marvels!

   


This is the full length of each dragon
Notice the size of the dragon compared to the people and buildings to get a grasp on the actual size of the creature.

Charlene and Sally visited an island off South Korea that still has wild Mongolian horses and while they were there visited a museum for teddy bears.  They went in, not knowing what to expect, and discovered a real treat. South Koreans, it turns out are crazy about teddy bears. Take a look at these:



THE BEATLES


TEDDY BEAR ELVIS






Ghandi  Teddy Bear


Queen Elizabeth II Teddy Bear

I hope you enjoyed the bears and the elaborate costumes made for them - those do belong in a museum.


I was told that South Korea has two Teddy Bear Museums and China has one.  Who knew??


When I saw these pictures of a Korean Wedding Dress I had to include these.  The embroidery is magnificent.  I love the contrasting parts of sleeves in a white background.


Back of Wedding Dress

Front of Wedding Dress


ON TO JAPAN   
Japanese Girl


While visiting Kyoto, Japan Charlene discovered that young women can rent kimonos on the weekend and stroll through the parks and city in costume. What a fun idea!  You can see these young women are truly having a good time.  Note: They are taking selfies!  If you look closer to the woman on the left - it looks as if she has the face makeup on like a Geisha. 





WHERE ARE ALL THE JAPANESE EMBROIDERY BOOKS??



Lots of embroiderers study Japanese embroidery and I wish new books would be published on this subject. As far as I know there is only one book on the subject available from Search Press: Gray, Julia D. - Traditional Japanese Embroidery -According to tradition, students of Japanese embroidery must watch a master at work and "steal the knowledge". Here, Julia shares her passion for this exquisite craft, revealing her in-depth knowledge of the skills and symbolism involved. Detailed instructions reveal the intricacies of working with silk thread and silk fabric, and clear step-by-step photos show how to create beautiful embroideries.  $21.95

Silk is a highly sought after fabric but who knew you could do this with the cocoons?


Cocoon People


More Cocoon People


How cute is this? 

Charlene discovered this kimono for a bottle of wine here in Phoenix at the Japanese Gardens.
I want one so I will head out for the Japanese Gardens soon.
I discovered some new stuff about these countries. Hope you enjoyed the photos.

Before we leave the Orient I'd like to revisit the subject of dragons.  Nobody does the dragon better than Dorothy Lesher. She teaches the art of dragon needlepoint at the ANG.  I've seen her work in person and she knows how to create a fantasy creature.
 
 
 
 
 

If you are inspired to create your own dragon I've included the following books:

Davies, Paul Bryn - How to Draw Dragons: In Simple Steps - Derived from the idea that all drawing is based upon a simple construction of lines and shapes, this exciting guide teaches aspiring artists how to draw popular subjects - this one dragons. You only need to follow the easy step-by-step instructions to draw highly detailed pictures of fearsome dragons and flying, fire-breathing beasts in action-packed scenes.  $9.95




Murphy, Pat - Paper Flying Dragons - This book includes 12 fearsome, stunning paper dragons to fold and fly and illustrated, step-by-step instructions. Send the Mountain
Dragon soaring, glide the Sea Dragon low over the ocean, or make a flock of hatchlings: baby dragon toys as fast and fierce as the grownups. The book includes little known facts about dragons and their history.  $16.99




Reinhart, Matthew and Robert Sabuda - Dragons and Monsters - These two master paper engineers unfold the legends and lore of cultures around the world to reveal in wonderful pop-ups such creatures as dragons, a Kraken, a gorgon, and more.  $29.95








If you are crazy for kimonos I've included a few books you might want to peruse:

Milhaupt, Terry Satsuki - Kimono: A Modern history - The gorgeous, vividly colored, and visually witty designs of the traditional Japanese garment referred to in modern times as kimono, things to wear, are the subject of this groundbreaking study.  Through her insightful analysis of textile design, fabrics, dyes, designers workshops and distribution systems, the late Terry Satsuki Milhaupt offers insights into the complex cultural and social history of modern Japan.  $29.00


Sun, Ming-Ju - Creative Haven: Japanese Kimono Designs - If you have joined in with the coloring craze and love kimonos here's one for you. More than 30 illustrations to color depict women in traditional garb enhanced by intricate prints of cherry blossoms, bamboo, birds, and other figures. Perforated pages are printed on one side only for easy removal and display.  $5.99






Sun, Ming-Ju - Traditional Japanese Fashion Paper Dolls - This book allows you to dress two female figures in a formal court dress of the Ashikaga period (1338-1573). It also includes kimonos with floral designs, a traditional Japanese bridal dress, modern formal robes. 16 full-color plates of costumes.  Who says paper dolls are only for children?  $6.95





Waddell, John - Kimono Revisited - This is a class that John has taught many times to many eager needlepointers. You can use his colors or be adventurous and choose your own and pick your canvas and have some fun learning 90 stitches and creating your own kimono to display. $30.00 ( Discount code: Heart17)




SPEAKING OF KIMONOS ... WHAT ABOUT GEISHAS?

The first thing I learned about geishas from Charlene was about the book, Geisha: A Life by Mineko Iwasaki. She highly recommended this book about these highly trained artistic women that have nothing to do with sex but with perfection. The word geisha means "women of art".  Their talents playing musical instruments. dancing, the tea ceremony take many years.  If you want to learn about this art and the life of a past top geisha this book is fascinating. Mineko tells all, the first Geisha to do so. Trained to become a geisha from the age of five, she would live among the other "women of art" in Kyoto's Gion Kobu district and practiced the ancient customs of Japanese entertainment. She was loved by kings, princes, military heroes, and wealthy statesmen alike. But even though she became one of the most prized geishas in Japan, Mineko wanted more: her own life. She retired at age of 29 years old.  Today she is about 70 years of age and her book reveals a little-known world, and an intimate glimpse into Japanese culture.  A classic!  I read it and loved it.  $17.00 


POTPOURRI OF NEW BOOKS

Burr, Trish - Whitework with Colour - Adding color to traditions whitework embroidery opens the door to a whole new world of creative possibilities. Exploring unusual combinations of hues, celebrated needle artist Trish Burr has created seventeen projects that will entice stitchers. Ranging from complete beginner to more advanced, her designs include a gorgeous zen poppy; a stunning sunrise over the ocean; and a pretty French country vase.  $24.95

Trish Burr taught herself embroidery and has become a world known needle artist and the author numerous highly successful books I have listed below.  The book above is her latest creation.  I'm already getting requests for it. 

Redoute's Finest Flowers in Embroidery - Trish has painstakingly recreated blooms from the paintings of 19th-Century botanical artist Pierre Joseph Redoute in exquisite embroidery. Using only the simpliest stitches, she provides instructions, illustrations and photos to take you step-by-step through stitching 17 beautiful blossoms roses, lilies, birds of paradise, dahlias, magnolias and more. $19.95


Long and Short Stitch Embroidery: A Collection of Flowers - Here Trish introduces her unique long and short-stitch needlepainting style of portraying flowers like a botanical painter. Fiver starter projects show how to create the illusion of brushwork in thread and use basic techniques, from preparing fabric and transferring designs to blocking and mounting. Sixteen easily achieved but challenging larger projects enable beginners and experts to bring to life meticulously detailed sunflowers, magnolias, bearded irises, and Icelandic poppy, roses, and more. With diagrams, full-sized templates, and stitch directions included.  $19.95

Crewel and Surface Embroidery: Inspirational Floral Designs - The 16 achievable projects are challenging but not overwhelming, decorative but also practical, with pleasing color schemes and clear step-by-step instructions. the skillful blending of wool, silk, and cotton guides the beginner and inspires the experienced stitcher to create this unique stile of embroidery. The numerous photos, illustrations, and row by-row color keys make following the projects an effortless task and a joy to stitch.  $24.95

Needle Painting Embroidery: Fresh Ideas for Beginners - In 15 projects organized in three levels, from novice to intermediate, Trish provides, easy-to-follow guidance on techniques for surface stitching that provide subtle shadings and a soft, paintlike blending of colors. Sections on materials, the long and short stitch, and helpful practice motifs lead to gorgeous projects like Burgundy Rosebuds, a Wild Pansy, and a Racquet-tailed Roller.  $21.95

Colour Confidence in Embroidery - How does color affect embroidery? How can it bring needlework to life? Discover the possibilities in this unique, in-depth exploration of color  in embroidery. From color selection and blending to choosing techniques for surface and counted thread embroidery projects. More than 200 stitched examples with DMC thread keys, plus color schemes and projects such as roses, fruits, and birds will inspire stitchers.  $34.95


Miniature Needle Painting Embroidery: Vintage Portraits, Florals and Birds - Small, embroidered "paintings" can have all the detail, form, and beauty of a larger piece except they're much quicker to stitch. These fresh and appealing designs capture the pretty, romantic images typical of the Victorian and post-Victorian eras. All the projects which include traditional portraits, birds, and flowers have detailed thread diagrams, and easy-to-follow instructions teach the basic stitches.  $24.95



Bolton, Janet - Fabric Pictures - To call what Janet Bolton makes with fabric 'patchwork' doesn't do justice to her creations - hers are images, pictures that capture fragments of an imagination that can strike anywhere, at any time.  She shows you how to create beautiful pictures on fabric. Taking you through her special method, she will guide you to find the inspiration around you and teach you how to turn your creativity into a textile project and develop your personal 'voice'.  The book is divided into two main sections - the first on how to find inspiration, the second on how to put your ideas into practice, complete with a step by step example that shows you every stage of construction from beginning to end. Just like in her workshops, Janet's guidance in the book is friendly, reassuring and inspiring.  $29.99


Bolton, Janet - Janet Bolton's Textile Pictures - Janet pictures the English countryside and small life scenes as if she was taking instantaneous photos with tenderness and sensibility in her simple style. Janet's original designs illustrate the whole book. Hard Cover.  142 pages.  $64.00






Harampolis, Alethea - Branches and Blooms: A Step-by-step Guide to Creating Magical Centerpieces, Wreaths, Garlands, and Other Unexpected Arrangements - The book provides more than 100 step-by-step project to make with flowering and leafy branches. In the spring, readers can create a cherry blossom boughs or a centerpiece of lilacs and olive branches. In the summer, a garland features sage with pomegranates and citrus-colored strawflowers. In autumn wreaths are made out of magnolias and rosemary. Winter highlights cedar, pine, and juniper, yielding unexpected table settings and new wreath shapes. Also included are hundreds of step-by-step photos, as well as tutorials covering basic techniques, sourcing, and care information.  $19.95






Healey, Elizabeth - Stitch, Fabric and Thread - This creative book encourages people to experiment with stitch, fabric and thread to create their own unique textiles. It is a treasure trove of over 40 inspiring practical exercises, a rich and creative exploration of fabric and stitch. The exercises draw inspiration from around the world; crate corded works of art inspired by Milton Glaser's iconic Bob Dylan album cover; create bold embroidered African masks; layer up and cut away to create Mola applique; use bleach and fabric paint to create Aboriginal dreamtime lizards; create knotted works of art inspired by ancient Mayan counting systems; embroider varsity cross-stitch letters or try out decorative Japanese book binding. Alternatively, try a host of other techniques such as quilting, printing, dyeing, couching tumbled crockery, creating pleats and puckers and needlelace.  Packed with stitch galleries and bursting with slow sewing ideas, the book also contains behind the stitches' features: illuminating insights into sewing movements such as Boro textiles, Gee's Bend quilting and Dorset buttons.  424.95

McWhinney, Jenny - Thread Painting: Bunnies in My Garden - Thread painting is the term for using colored thread embroider to create artistic, dimensional images. Using Jenny McWhinney's directions, even novice embroiderers can recreate 12 delightful rabbit-themed designs including bunnies watering and potting plants, raking leaves, harvesting carrots, gathering honey, and picking apples. Tracing patterns and stitch diagrams are included for each, and 100 color photos document the projects in various stages.  $19.95

Naumann, Sara - How to Make Resin Jewellery - Well-known crafter Sara Naumann shows you just how easy and quick resin jewellery is to make, using minimal equipment and readily available products, and provides over 50 fabulous projects for you to try. You can add numerous items to the resin to achieve different effects. In addition, you can also immerse various items in the resin before it cures, such as dried flowers and leaves, fathers, shells, beads and charms, or try glitter, colored inks, nail polish.  $19.95


Kato, Reiko - Garden Party - After the resounding success of "Les Petites Histories de Sue and Billy (Small Stories of Sue and Billy), "Heartful Quilts", and "My Dream Quilts" Reiko has written a second sweet and enchanting book. It is full of her friendly characters and of little pictures going through the seasons.  $48.00







Quiltmania - Mosaique d'etoffes - 44 color pictures of an outstanding collection of ancient French quilts from the end of the 19th to beginning of 20th century.  $22.00










Quiltmania - My Little Japan - We have gathered together almost 100 photos from the 2015 International Great Quilt Festival of Tokyo. Included in these photos are meetings with artists and collectors, and a lot of snapshots of our wanderings in Tokyo and Kyoto, Everything we love about Japan!  $29.99




Ray, Aimee - Patchwork Embroidery -Patchwork isn't just for quilts! It's also perfect for making clothing, toys, housewares, and more. Add embroidery to the mix, and the possibilities are endless. Bestselling author Aimee Ray has whipped up 21 great gift ideas that showcase both techniques. They all feature her popular signature motifs, and include place mats, napkins, table covers, pillows, banners and even baby items. $17.95


Russo, Neysa - Needle Felted Tapestries: Make Your Own Woolen Masterpieces - From simple mug rugs to Renaissance-style tapestry wall hangings, 16 charming projects lead fiber lovers on a journey to discover the art of needle felting. Felt artist Neysa Russo shares her years of experience with felt and felt design so that you can make your own felted masterpiece.  Create a colorful coaster, a handy needle and pin case, charming table runner, wall hanging and more.  She covers the tools needed, materials and techniques and finishing for both wet felting and needle felting, how to add color and dimension and more.  $21.95




Sloan, Pat - The Splendid Sampler: 100 Spectacular Blocks from a Community of Quilters - Join the Splendid Sampler community with a comprehensive collection of 6 inch blocks created and shared by more than 80 of today's most innovative quilt designers.  A number of the six-inch blocks are shown in two colorways for twice the creativity. $27.99




Mystery Corner

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Archer, Winnie - Kneaded to Death (Bread Shop Mystery) - Struggling photographer Ivy Culpepper has lots of soul-searching to do since returning to seaside Santa Sofia, California. This is, until the thirty-six year old enters a bread making class at Yeast of Eden. Whether it's the aroma of fresh conchas in the oven, or her instant connection with owner Olaya Solis, Ivy just knows the  missing ingredients in her life are hidden among the secrets of Olaya's bakery. But Ivy's spirits crumble when a missing classmate is suddenly discovered dead in her car. Even more devastating, the prime suspect is Olaya Solis herself. Doubting the woman could commit such a crime, Ivy embarks on a murder investigation of her own to prove her innocence and seize the real killer. As she follows a deadly trail of crumbs around town, Ivy must trust her gut like never before or someone else could be toast! $7.99


Blackmore, Stephanie - Murder Wears White - Mallory Shepard's wedding planning business is off to a shaky start when a member of the bridal family drops dead at a food tasting. But what Mallory didn't plan on is the bride's aunt being poisoned at the wedding tasting and her perfect venue becomes engaged in her own investigation she learns the man convicted of the crime may not be guilt. Now she has two crimes to solve before the bride walks down the aisle - but a killer has other plans to ensure that Mallory forever holds her peace.  $7.99


Blake, Bethany - Death by Chocolate Lab - Pet sitter Daphne Templeton has a soft spot for every stray and misfit who wanders into the quaint, lakeside, village of Sylvan Creek. But even Daphne doesn't like arrogant, womanizing Steve Beamus, the controversial owner of Blue ribbon K-9 Academy. When Steven turns up dead during a dog agility trial, Daphne can think of a long list of people with motives for homicide and so can the police. Unfortunately, at the top of the list is Daphne's sister, Steve's latest wronged girlfriend. Daphne sets out to clear her sister's name and find Axis, Steve's prize-winning chocolate Labrador, who went missing the night of Steve's death. Aided by Socrates, her taciturn basset hound, and a hyperactive one-eared Chihuahua named Artie Daphne runs afoul of Detective Jonathan Black, an enigmatic newcomer to town, who has no appreciation for Daphne's unorthodox sleuthing.  $7.99

Bradford, Laura - The Silence of the Flans - Baker Winnie Johnston does her best work when the heat is on. As owner of the Emergency Dessert Squad, she has a deft touch in the kitchen and a soft spot for lost causes. So when her business professor beau, Jay Morgan , expresses misgivings over having to fail one of his fourth grade students, Winnie cooks up a sweet solution. She'll offer an extra credit opportunity in exchange for a little help with her growing business. But when her protégé's first dessert delivery poisons a student journalist, the publicity threatens to burn Winnie's business to a crisp. Now the entrepreneur-turned-detective must uncover the ingredients behind a recipe for murder before she crumbles under pressure.  $7.99

Cahoon, Lynn - Fatality by Firelight - To kick off a winter writing retreat, Cat and her handyman boyfriend, Seth, escort the aspiring authors to a nearby ski resort, hoping some fresh cold air will wake up their creative muses. But instead of hitting the slopes, they hit the bar and before long, a tipsy romance novelist named Christina is keeping herself warm with a local ski bum who might have neglected to tell her about his upcoming wedding. Next thing Cat knows, her uncle, the town sheriff, informs her that the young man's been found dead in a hot tub and Christina shows up crying and covered in blood. Now between a murder mystery, the theft of a rare Hemingway edition, and the arrival of a black-clad stranger in snowy Aspen Hills, Cat's afraid everything's going downhill.  $7.99

Childs, Laura - Devonshire Scream - Catering a trunk show at heart's Desire Jewelry is a shining achievement for Theodosia and the Indigo Tea Shop. After all, slew of jewelers, museum curators, and private collectors will be there to sip some of Theo's best blends. Unfortunately, the party is crashed by a gang of masked muggers who steal the precious gems on display, and then disappear almost as quickly as they arrived leaving a dead body in their wake. Theo gets involved in the case after her friend Brooke, aunt of the victim and owner of  Heart's Desire, begs for help in figuring out who committed the brutal burglary. though the FBI believes this smash and grab is the work of an international gang of jewel thieves, Theo is convinced that the felon is someone much closer to home.  $7.99

Davis, Krista - Mission Impawsible - Davis has created a town that any pet would love as much as their owners do. And they won't let a little thing like murder spoil their enjoyment.  Murder, mystery, a bit of romance and seriously pets!  Welcome to Wagtail, Virginia.  $7.99








Fluke, Joanne - Wedding Cake Murder - Hannah is thrilled to be marrying Ross Barton, her college crush. And her excitement only grows when she learns he'll be able to join her on her trip to New York City for the Food Channel's dessert chef contest. they get a taste of the Big Apple before Hannah wins the Hometown Challenge and the producers bring all the contestants to Lake Eden to tape the remainder of the show. It's nerve-wracking enough being judged by Alain Duqesne, a celebrity chef with a nasty reputation. But it's even more chilling to find him stabbed to death in the Lake Eden Inn's walk-in cooler before he's even had a chance to taste Hannah's Butterscotch Sugar Cookies! Now Hannah has not only lost her advantage, she'll have to solve a mystery with more layers than a five-tiered wedding cake.  $7.99

Furlong, Susan - War and Peach - Nola Mae Harper is too busy restocking the jars of preserves and chutney flying off the shelves of her shop, Peachy Keen, to keep up with the demand. Lots of gossip about the upcoming race for mayor and local farmer Clem Rogers claims he has a bombshell that could take small business owner Margie Price out of the running. But before Clem can reveal his juicy secret at the debate, his actual barn goes up in flames with him inside of it. The town casts it vote against Margie, but Nola isn't convinced the hardworking woman is capable of murder.  $7.99


James, Miranda - No Cats Allowed - Mississippi librarian Charlie Harris and his Maine Coon cat Diesel are on their guard. Oscar Reilly, the new director at the Athena College library, is on a mission to cut costs and has set his sights on the archive and rare book collection. Reilly's also out to replace Charlie's fiery friend Melba with someone younger, but his biggest offense is declaring all four-legged creatures banned from the stacks. With enemies aplenty, the suspect list is long when Reilly's body is discovered in the library, but incriminating evidence throws suspicion on Melba. Charlie is convinced that his friend is no murderer, especially when he catches sight of a menacing stranger lurking around the library. Now he and Diesel will have to read between the lines, before Melba's shelved under G for guilt.  $7.99

Lane, Kelly - Cold Pressed Murder - Its the pits for the attendees of the annual Farm Family Fare in Abundance, Georgia, when olive oiler Eva Knox finds herself in the middle of a murder case. This weekend event consists of two days of tours, exhibition, music, tastings, and, most important, cooking demonstrations with celebrity chefs from the Chow Network. The enthusiasm begins to dribble away after one of the star chefs goes missing and is later found dead in the back of a refrigerated truck. The scandal gets messier after the police discover that Eva's sister Daphne spent the night with the victim right before he died, making her the prime suspect for his murder.  $7.99

Logan, Kylie - Gone with the Twins - The League of Literary Ladies is currently enjoying Margaret Mitchell's sage of the south, GONE WITH THE WIND. But there's one situation on South Bass Island that they wish would simply blow over. Kidnapped as teenagers, the children of a famous movie star are now media darlings after a miraculous escape. What's next for the celebrity twins? They're opening an over-the-top B and B called Tara on South Bass Island, and frankly, they don't given a dame about the competition including Bea Cartwright's own beloved inn. The other member of the League Chandra, Kate, and Luella are turning scarlet. But when local realtor Vivian Frisk is found murdered and the suspects include Chandra, who lost her beau to the frisky Vivian, the Ladies rally to her defense. They may have to skim a few chapters of the Civil War soap opera and focus on bringing justice to the island they call home.  $7.99 

McConnon, Maggie - Bel of the Brawl: A Belfast McGrath Mystery - Beth McGrath loves her work as a wedding chef. But with her latest event set to take place at Shamrock Manor, she just can't seem to catch a break. The Casey wedding has left her with ten thousand greenbacks in the hole, a missing staff member, and a dead groom. Now in between Guinness beers and pub brawls, Bel must find a way to crack the case - even though what she should be cracking are eggs into the batter of the wedding cake. A good Irish girl's work is never done. What begins as local town fodder is turning into more. With the Casey family spiraling out of control, and billable McGrath hours being lost by the minute, Bel is definitely in too deep. She even barely has time to obsess over her new boyfriend and her own unsolved mystery from years ago! Time is running out on getting the next couple down the aisle before the so-called luck of the Irish takes a deadly turn.  $7.99

Shelton, Paige - The Cracked Spine (Scottish Bookshop Mystery #1) - American bibliophile Delaney Nichols is about to take Scotland and legions of cozy mystery readers-by storm! She takes a job at the legendary bookshop filled with special editions and rare manuscripts, it's a house of biblio delights one as eclectic as those who work there; the spirited and ever-curious Rosie, along with her tiny dog, Hector; a nineteen year old thespian named Hamlet and Edwin, the big boss, who Delaney likes but but just can't get a read on. Then there's Tom, the bartender from across the street, whose gentle brogue pulls at Delany's heart strings and who can rock a kilt like none other. $7.99

Tatem Clover - Blown Away (Kite Shop Mystery #1) - Emmy is finally living her dream. She's moved to the coastal town of Rock Point, Oregon, and is starting a kite business, Strings Attached features her own unique designs, inspired by everything from Picasso to Matisse's colorful cutouts. Her spirits are soaring sky-high the morning of the grand opening until she stumbles upon a dead man washed up on the beach. The body belongs to local chef Miles Logan, and the gash across his chest indicates he's been murdered. The sheriff suspects Emmy's best friend, Avery, who used to date the chelf. Emmy is sure Avery would never hurt anyone, but her pal doesn't have an alibi for the night of the murder. With Avery's freedom and the fate of her kite shop up in the air, Emmy takes it upon herself to follow the string of clues and solve the murder before the real killer takes flight."  $7.99



Hope you enjoyed your visit to Ruth Kern Books

If this is your first time with us I'd like to introduce you to our company. We've been in business for 24 years and have set up needlework bookshops at both the ANG and EGA seminars and for other needlework groups as well as having sites on the web.
Can't find a certain book? Give us a call Monday thru Saturday at 602-943-0738 and if you need to leave a message I'm probably helping Mark, my husband, with M.S. or running books to the post office. I will return your call ASAP. Or you can e-mail me at rkern3@mindspring.com. To reach us by mail: Ruth Kern Books 7235 N. 9th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 850921. Love to hear from you.

IMPORTANT: Don't forget to find the discount code hidden in this blog that gives you a 20% discount on any new book you order. 
Have a wonderful January/February and 2017.