My book report post is a little late…but then I remembered I’m in charge around here. So actually, this post is right on time!
Our summer has ended now – school has started up…with two kids homeschooled and one going to a school down the street from us. Therefore, my brain has automatically switched to thinking of this season as fall – even though I’m totally hot right now, but too lazy to get up and turn on a fan. Blah. Can’t wait for those 50 degree days!
But here, for the record, are the books I read in the waning days of summer! (If you click on the titles, it will take you to Amazon.com)
The Gift of Being Yourself: The Sacred Call to Self-Discovery by David Benner. This book definitely comes from a Christian perspective. And it also has a title that may scare you away if you’re afraid of self-help platitudes – however, it is not at all that! It is balanced between psychological and biblical truths (I just mean he doesn’t beat you over the head with verses, but uses them to encourage and then also goes into discussions of personality traits, etc.). Benner focuses on accepting and seeing ourselves as being given gifts that make up our personality and our strengths. How do we work with those strengths and how do live in light of knowing we are uniquely created by God? Straightforward, not flowery, good, solid combo of biblical truth and self-awareness. Rating: 9
The Weight of Glory by C.S. Lewis. A collection of nine sermons Lewis gave during World War II including The Weight of Glory, The Inner Ring, and Is Theology Poetry? Beautiful works – and also, even though Lewis’s writings are ones you have to concentrate and think about what he’s saying, the fact that they are lectures means they are shorter and easier to digest. I carried this around in my car and my tote bag and would just pull it out and read it when I had a few minutes. Rating: 9
A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle – This was very much purposeful that I read Madeleine L’Engle as I was reading CS Lewis. In my opinion, L’Engle and Lewis share the unique ability to write science fiction, fiction and then the most beautiful non-fiction you’ve read. She has a great way of combining the every day life we face with deeper theological truths, which I have always appreciated. The first of her books in the Crosswicks Journal series, this book talks about her life in a small town where her husband, Hugh, owned a grocery store. She looks at writing, life, raising children, small town gossip and friendships, all with her unique gift of applying deeper truths to what is going on around her. Love this book so much.
Loving My Actual Life: An Experiment in Relishing What’s Right in Front of Me by Alexandra Kuykendall – Good, basic information on being content and being happy with your situation and seeing God in the big and little issues of your life. While I liked it, I also read it during a really frustrating time of my life and it made it a little harder to just accept and not feel like it was a bit “la, la, la… be happy about everything!” I believe in contentment, but I also believe in struggling and acknowledging true emotions – even if they are hard to see and hear. However, overall, a good book. Rating: 7
Giddy Up, Eunice: Because Women Need Each Other by Sophie Hudson – I have to be straight up and admit I don’t like the title of this book at all (if we’re calling women to be mature and intelligent and mentors to one another, why the cutesie title??). But, that being said, this is a really, really good book on friendship between different ages of women and how we can help each other and mentor and teach one another (as it says in the Bible we should do!). Very good words and solid information on biblical friendship between women. Hudson uses the examples of Elizabeth and Mary, Naomi and Ruth and Lois and Eunice to make her point. Well done. Rating: 9
Truly, Madly, Guilty by Lianne Moriarty – Good mystery. Not as good as some of her other ones. Read it by a pool, if you can. That’s about it. Rating: 7
Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan. I don’t know. Cute? But really random and slightly tooooo fluffy – even though it was summer reading. Polly moves to a flat on the Cornish coast and takes up her hobby of baking bread (this is because she is escaping a bad relationship). Of course, the hobby attracts customers and she starts selling the bread and you guessed it, opens a Little Beach Street Bakery. There is some cuteness to the story, but overall… meh. Rating: 6
To make the complete list of 2016 reads – here are the links to other months’ book reports: