Wendy D. Johnson of wendyknits.net doesn't disappoint with this, her fourth, book, Wendy Knits Lace.
I really adore Wendy, and not just because she was nice enough to chat with me. Her knitting is lovely, her writing is clear, and her patterns are interesting.
The formatting of the book was great, and displayed equally well on my desktop computer and my iPad 2.
The text was clear, but, more importantly, the book really took advantage of the medium. Links in the introduction allow the reader to skip to the sections mentioned. Links under project photographs take the reader directly to the pattern for that project. These are nice features that are sometimes lacking in ebooks.
More importantly, since this is a book about lace, after all, links were provided within the text to printable copies of charts, that could also be downloaded as pdfs.
At the bottom of the page for the first chart I clicked, I had the option of looking at or downloading all of the extended content for the ebook, consisting of pdf charts for all of the charted patterns in the book.
I think the charts, even within the book, are pretty legible, but it is nice to know that an even more clear, portable version is also available.
Photos of the projects are beautiful enough to inspire, but also sharp enough to make the garment construction crystal-clear.
Wendy, of course, covers the basics of lace knitting, fixing mistakes and blocking and even shares her first run-in with the medium, which was not a success.
However, she also goes beyond what I would expect and takes the time to explain techniques like short rows.
Shapes throughout the book are pretty simple, but I would have liked at least a small diagram (or laid-flat photo) of the Two-Thirds Shawl, which is described as half a hexagon. (I know I can figure it out, but I want to see it, too.)
That said, my fingers are itching to cast on a Vortex Spiral Afghan right this second, and yours will be, too, I think.
It isn't all stoles, shawls and afghans. Wendy also bends her creative, intricate eye to projects like Esplanade Mittens, that have little details of lace on the thumb and the backs of the hands and Bobble Gloves, which look very cool, indeed.
I don't want you to think this is JUST a projects book. The first two chapters provide a very solid grounding in technique, so that any knitter, with a little patience and a knowledge of knit and purl could knit any pattern in this book.
The Resources section of the book has a great, big list of yarn companies (with links to their websites), a chart of the standard yarn weight system, and a list of abbreviations and a key to chart symbols (I would bookmark this page, if you are just learning to read charts).
A Project Index, with photos of every project, and an index round out the back of the book. In the electronic index, simply click on the project, technique, or topic you would like to see, and you are automatically brought to that section of the book.
Overall, a very well-made, well-written and well-worth-it book.