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Gr. 6--9. You don't have to be a knitter to love this book, but it helps. Readers unfamiliar with the craft will still find plenty to like. Scottie, trying to get over the death of a beloved aunt and a disruption in her relationship with her best friend, Amanda, stumbles across KnitWit, a knit shop whose owner, Alice, teaches her to knit and sooths her with just the right yarn. To Scottie's relief and delight, Amanda discovers knitting, too, and so do two very different girls from their private school--biracial Bella, whose good cheer is disdained by the cool kids, and punky Tay, whose knitting is fueled by anger. Lenhard does a terrific job of individualizing the characters (only Scottie's parents come across as stereotypes), and she also comes up with some interesting plotlines. As for the knitting, there's plenty. The descriptions may deter some, but they might just as easily entice a few readers to knit (four patterns are included). Pair with Jessie Elliots' Girls' Dinner Club (2005), which celebrates food the way this celebrates yarn. --Ilene Cooper Copyright 2005 Booklist


School Library Journal
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Gr 7-10-When Scottie's great-aunt teaches her to knit, the 15-year-old is hooked. At KnitWit, a funky store relatively close to her Chicago home, she makes an assortment of friends. The girls take the Stark School by storm, knitting during their lunch periods and study sessions. They bond over joys and trials, each struggling with adolescent issues and with their works in progress. Scottie yearns to get closer to her artsy parents, who want to see their daughter as a "fiber artist"; Bella would like to be a little more rebellious; Tay wants her male friend to see her as a girlfriend; and popular Amanda struggles to hide her learning disability. These are lovable, flawed characters, and their story will be enjoyed by many girls. Project instructions are included.-Delia Carruthers, Sunset Ridge Middle School, West Jordan, UT (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Publishers Weekly
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Lenhard's (the W.I.T.C.H. series) novel relays the tale of the self-proclaimed Chicks with Sticks, four diverse, likable teens in Chicago who lose themselves-and in so doing, find themselves-in knitting after they join a class at KnitWit, a yarn shop. Fifteen-year-old Scottie is still grieving the death of her favorite aunt just a month ago. Through the knitting group, she reconnects with her recently estranged best friend, beautiful, popular Amanda, who has hidden her serious learning disability from all peers but Scottie. Another classmate, Tay, sporting spiked hair, tattoos and an eyebrow ring, comes to KnitWit because her guidance counselor "thinks I'm hyper and prescribed yarn in lieu of Ritalin." Home-schooled for years, cheerful Bella is tired of conforming to the expectations of her free-spirited yet smothering parents. Lenhard credibly builds the camaraderie that grows out of this unlikely knitting circle (and includes four projects for young knitters to start their own). But descriptions of the therapeutic effects of both their knitting and friendship at times grow melodramatic (e.g., Bella says, "I can make a sweater with arms long enough for my arms. Maybe, with you guys, I can achieve perfection after all"). Though the group begins to unravel, the plot's predictable pattern reunites the quartet in, unfortunately, a rather banal bind-off. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved