Saturday, April 4, 2015

Beautiful Books

Every night when I tuck her in, we spend a few seconds arranging the dozens of books that sleep beside her.  She reads them with her flashlight long into the darkness after we have kissed our goodnights. They are her companions, her friends and she wants them close by.  I adore this about my girl:  she is a reader.  

I too love to read.  As far back as I can remember, I have kept lists of the books I have finished and those I someday plan to read.  I also made my peace and I stopped finishing books I do not like.  In my opinion, life is too short to suffer through books you don’t love. These days, I am an admitted slow reader.  In this season, most of my reading time comes in the middle of the night after waking up with a little one, so needless to say, I am several years behind on “current” books.  But I don’t mind, it just means I have a built in discussion group because everyone else has usually already read the book I just finished.  It is kind of nice actually. 

Are you a reader too? Is there anything better than a good book? I have been on a roll lately with good books and so I thought I would pass along some recommendations in case you have not read them and were looking for some good books for your summer reading list.  These are some of my favorites from the past few months and some from last year as well.  These recommendations are based completely my own opinion and like I mentioned, I am pretty behind the times.  I hope you enjoy!

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

  • This one.  Oh, this one.  If you read any book on this list, do not miss this one.  I forced myself to read it slow because I loved it so much and did not want it to be over.  It opened my eyes to a new perspective of World War II and I adored the characters and missed them long after I finished the book. It is beautifully written with a powerful message of love and friendship.  This book changed me. So, so beautiful.

Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist
  • I love every word Shauna writes.  I love her writing style. I love her love of food and relationships and how she writes about faith without writing about faith.  This book is another one I never wanted to put down.  Lovely, beautiful and rich.  Plus it is packed with recipes, so if you enjoy cooking or entertaining, this is a beautiful book to have on hand. 

Love Does by Bob Goff
  • This book is a delight.  If you do not know who Bob is, when you read this book, you will want to be his friend- I promise.  I have given this book as a gift to so many people since I finished it.  It is a book based on his funny, amazing, inspiring and super encouraging life.  I wish I could have Bob over for dinner every week!  

The Girl with the Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
  • This one broke my drought.  I had been in a long slump of reading good books when a friend recommended this one to me.  It is not very long, but will completely transport you to a different era of time and will absorb you into an amazing story.  It is historical fiction based around a famous painting and I loved it.

The Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore
  • This book sat on my shelf for over a year before I actually picked it up and began reading.  Once I started, I could hardly put it down.  It had a tremendous impact on me and I found it to be deeply encouraging both spiritually and relationally. It is a beautiful story about the impact of friendship and the influence one life can have on another.  It is a true and beautiful story.

Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis

  • I had been reading Katie’s blog about her life in Uganda before picking up her book.  It is an amazing first hand account from an amazing girl who followed God's call on her heart and gave up a life of privilege to adopt and parent over a dozen children in Uganda. Her faith is inspirational and her story is encouraging.  

What Women Fear by Angie Smith
  • This book is amazing.  It is so relatable and insightful and powerful.  I read this book during my quiet time about a year ago and still think about it today.  I love the way Angie writes and know I will go back to this book in the months and years ahead.

I have read many others as well, but these are the ones that have stayed with me long after I finished them.  The photo at the top of this post is of the books I hope to tackle in 2015.  So far I have read about four books this year- two of which were not even on my  "hope to read" list, so that has been a fun surprise.  If you have any books you have read that you loved, please pass the recommendations along my way! 

Happy reading!

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