Knitting audio books. This concept is kind of foreign to me, especially with Stitch 'N Bitch, the modern knitting classic by Debbie Stoller. Though I do not own this book, I have flipped through it at the book store. Last I checked, it was largely an instructional book. How is that going to work as an audio book?
Well, it really doesn’t. The audio version of Stitch 'N Bitch is read by the author herself. The book is on three CDs, with each track separated into sections – most only four or five minutes long. The CD opens with a brief history of knitting, as well as Stoller’s personal history of knitting. It then continues into descriptions of different yarns, picking the right yarn, needles, et cetera. The book wraps up with knitter communities, knitting books and magazines, and a description of common knitting abbreviations.
The bulk of the audio book is offering knitting instruction. I just don’t understand how this can be an effective learning tool without demonstrations. I have been knitting for many years, but I could not follow even the most basic instructions for purling. Even though I know what Fair Isle knitting looks like, hearing just a description without being able to match it to an example was awkward. And of course, the patterns from the physical book are not included with the CD.
The CD itself seems rather cheaply produced. None of the tracks are titled, so if you want to jump to the chapter on buttonholes, you have to hunt through to remember which track it is, or go through and title them all yourself. There are no liner notes to help with this, either. The audio quality is good, and Stoller speaks clearly, but there is not much emotion in her voice. It’s a bit dull to listen to.
For my money, I would rather buy the physical book. You get pictures, you get patterns, you get visual demonstrations, you get a table of contents.