Thursday 13 February 2014

Book Review- Boys Don't Knit by T. S. Easton

Title: Boys Don't Knit
 Author: T. S. Easton
Series: Boys Don't Knit #1
Published: 1  January 2014 by Hot Key Books
Length:227 pages
Source: publisher
Other info: There's an amazon page for a sequel, An English Boy in New York!
Summary : Ben Fletcher must get to grips with his more 'feminine' side following an unfortunate incident with a lollipop lady and a stolen bottle of Martini Rosso from Waitrose. All a big misunderstanding of course. To avoid the Young Offenders unit, Ben is ordered to give something back to the community and develop his sense of social alignment. Take up a hobby and keep on the straight and narrow. The hot teacher he likes runs a knitting group so Ben, reluctantly at first, gets 'stuck in'. Not easy when your dad is a sports fan and thinks Jeremy Clarkson is God. To his surprise, Ben finds that he likes knitting and that he has a mean competitive streak. If he can just keep it all a secret from his mates...and notice that the girl of his dreams, girl-next-door Megan Hooper has a bit of a thing for him...(less)
Review:  Ben Fletcher is in trouble after an incident with Waitrose, a bottle of wine, and a lollipop later. As a result, he has to keep a diary to show to his probation officer, which is what we read. He also has to give something back to the community, which will be helping out the lollipop lady. He also has to take up a hobby, which is knitting, because it's taught the the teacher he likes.  He starts, it he likes it, he gets good at it. Now all he has to do is deal with his family, friends and lovelife.
I heard about this from the Hot Key brunch thing. I decided to read it because of my project I'm doing which is all about gender stereotypes in YA (which I will post up here when it's done) and this definitely fit into my “cisgender characters challenging stereotypes). Boys Don't Knit  was full of this-and a lot more.
I was not expecting the sheer amount of fun I got from this. From the beginning, it's told in a fun style, with a look at Ben's family life. Ben is a good narrator, he's chatty, he's relatable, he seems totally real with his priorities, thoughts and actions. I like the fact that Ben really gets into what he wouldn't have chosen to do, and goes on to get really good at it. I like the fact that he and his friends aren't thuggy, they're nicer, and they're all supportive of Ben.   All the characters are likeable- Megan, Jessica, Joe, and  others. Aside from Jeannette. Who was funny.
I liked the way that Tom looked at the challenging of stereotypes and Ben's worries about being seen as different.   There's one thing with Ben's dad, who is comically masculine (Top Gear, thinking he can do things etc) and where he's not particularly accepting that the fact his son's started knitting. But everyone else is fine with it, and I think this helps in the real world because readers will pick up on characters' positive reactions and be more accepting of real people who challenge stereotypes.
There's a few plotlines going on, like keeping knitting from his family, from his friends, Ben's love life, Ben's success with his knitting, Miss Swallow's life, and they were all really well woven together.
As I said, the writing is diary style and chatty. It also works in a lot of pop-culture references, and so many oneliners that keep you laughing from start to finish.

Overall:  Strength 4 tea to a really fun book. Good for fans of Adrian Mole- ie everyone.

Links: Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads | Author website


  1. Terrific review. This book looks really interesting. Thanks so much for sharing. Underrated Books

  2. It was so much fun, wasn't it? I can't wait to read the next instalment, because I'm sure it'll be even funnier.

    Great review, Nina! :D

  3. I'm just the throes of reading Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. It's quite a more mature read and the theory of gender stereotypes doesn't come into play until quite late in the novel so I'm thinking that reading this soon afterwards might be a good, light and humours read to continue with.



Thanks for taking time to read this!
Comments are much loved.
Nina xxx

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