Switch Craft

Switch Craft by Alison Lewis with Fang-Yu Lin is positively delightful, and not just because many patterns use battery power to illuminate clothing. The projects in Switch Craft range from a pillow with a sewn-in mobile headset for comfortable late-night chats to a laptop bag that lights up in the presence of Wi-Fi. The patterns are geared toward all skill levels and the fashion is trendy, reflecting the planned obsolescence of the gadgets they utilize. A newsboy cap with a felt flower that hides the controls to an iPod Shuffle is cute on its own, but add technology and it's a perfect addition to a proper metro-riding, urban fashionista's wardrobe. Catch Me If You Can foils thieves with a foil-lined passport pouch that disrupts new passports' radio chips, which transmit personal information. The authors touch on the implications of the tracking technology, explaining that these same radio-frequency identification tags are used in Prada's SoHo store to match accessories to shoppers' outfits. The Gadget Gloves pattern links our biology to current technology and solves the conundrum of personal media and cold days. "The human body, including the fingers, is actually conductive and stores electrons. This electron-storing ability is called capacitance. Most touchpads and touch screens used in the latest gadgets work by creating a capacitance field on their surface. The field gets distorted whenever your finger touches it?this is not possible when you have thick gloves on. The conductive thread that we added to the Gadget Gloves eliminates the problem." Reflecting our wired world with hip DIY style and patterns, Switch Craft shines a light on the latest crop of crafting books.

April 16: ""Blue pottery vases and bowls for flowers are most attractive, and certain blue books...will repeat and emphasize color."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Poems That Make Grown Men Cry

And women too.  Luminaries from Colin Firth to Nick Cave and Jonathan Franzen chose the poems that bring them to tears, and the result is a stunning collection of poignant verse from writers like Auden, Whitman, Bishop, Larkin, Neruda and many others.  Warning: choking-up hazard.

The King of Pain

Trapped beneath his entertainment system, reality TV mastermind Rick Salter reflects on his life and tries to piece together the events of the previous evening. Seth Kaufman’s romp is an outrageous meditation on pain and entertainment in a deranged world in which the two are often interchangeable.

The Good Inn

Frank Black, frontman for the Pixies, has written a transgressive historical fiction with shades of Thomas Pynchon (focused as it is on the history of explosives and cinematic pornography), all set in a hallucinatory Edwardian Europe.