I haven’t been doing much other than reading lately, which means I have lots of reviews this month! As usual, linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy:
Anything- Jenny Allen’s account of her journey to surrendering to anything God had for her was very inspiring. It almost scared me to read it, because I was worried what God would call me to do if I prayed the same prayer. So far he hasn’t asked me to start an International Conference or adopt a child from Africa like he did Jenny, but I suppose there’s still time 🙂 I would definitely recommend this one!
The Best Yes— I liked the topic of this book (prioritizing), and it’s one you’ll probably see repeated in my selections, which probably means it’s an area I need to work on! But overall the writing style was hard for me and it seemed to drag on. I once watched one of the author’s webinars for writers and she focused a lot on picking out punchy “tweetable” thoughts to build your book around. I definitely saw that in her own writing, and although sometimes I appreciate that, I just couldn’t get into it this time.
Anne of Green Gables– When this classic showed up in a box of books donated to my Little Free Library, I knew it was finally time to read it. I didn’t LOVE it—I think mostly because orphan Anne had a bright imagination which led to lots of descriptive prose…which is not really my thing, especially as a primarily non-fiction reader. I have heard there is another series by the same author that follows a different girl, who is more of a reader than a talker—so I may give that one a try.
Almost Amish– I LOVED this book and hope to expound more on it in the coming weeks. The author explores several areas of Amish life and how we can apply these same principles to our own lives —creating simplicity without having to fully commit to the amish lifestyle.
Sons of Encouragement: The Priest—I really enjoyed the companion women of the Bible series written by Francine Rivers, but I have to say, the men of the Bible was much slower and harder for me to get into. I ended up only reading the first book, focused around Aaron, before abandoning the rest to my Little Free Library. It is always fun to see these Biblical stories come to life, though, and it provided a good background for the same topics discussed in other books I was reading at the time.
Unstoppable— Christine uses the analogy of the US Olympic relay teams who dropped the baton during their race to portray the Christian walk and our need to be ready for the hand off or exchange in discipleship and the work that God calls us to do. This was a quick read, and she used many examples of people working with A21, the nonprofit she started to free victims of human trafficking.
The Unsettling of America– Confession: I abandoned this book. I really wanted to like it since I’ve heard so many good things about Wendell Berry and sustainable agriculture is a topic near and dear to my heart… there were definitely parts that I did like, but overall it was a little over my head. I’m going to try one of his other books—if anyone has a suggestion I would love to hear it.
Breathe– The gals in my home group went through this 5-week study this summer, and we all agreed that it was very convicting. Priscilla urges participants to find the area in their life that is cluttered or out of control and create margin for God to move. For some people it was their relationship with food, their amount of belongings, their busy schedule…for me, it was my social media usage. There was a lot of journaling and reading to do throughout the week, which I’ve heard is different than some of her other studies, but I thought it was perfect for summer.
Minimalist Parenting– I think I expected more from this book, and although it may be good for a beginner on the minimalist journey, it left me disappointed (this may have had something to do with my other reads about the Amish lifestyle—which is a little more intense on the minimalism scale). The authors shared their experiences with minimalism and they covered a variety of topics from stuff to schedules, schools to sports, and even mealtimes. Overall it was good for me to think about how I want each of these areas to look for my own family, even if I didn’t take their specific suggestions.
More Than Happy– Another book on the simple Amish lifestyle! This one was more of a recounting of the author’s time getting to know the Amish people in her area as she did research for her Amish romance novels. She looked at different areas of the Amish lifestyle (specifically as it applies to parenting), contrasted them with the “Englisch” (or non-amish) way of parenting, and then gave some tips for how to emulate the Amish lifestyle—since surprise surprise, the Amish children all seemed to be better off. This one was not as compelling to me as Almost Amish, but still provided many great points to ponder as we think about what intentional parenting will look like for us.
Modern Romance– I’ve never seen any of Aziz’s standup so I’m not really sure what drew me to this book. It was basically a look at our modern dating culture using statistics and stories from focus groups, with a few bad jokes thrown in. I suppose the joking made it easier to read than a report on the same topic, but overall I probably could’ve passed on it.
Church is a Team Sport- This book was written by my pastor, for other pastors around the country who may be having problems in their church. In it he gives the background on our church, his personal story, and then the method used by our church to make disciples in relational environments. Since the intended audience was people outside of our church, there was a lot of information that I have already learned numerous times through leadership training, sermons, and the like. But it’s always good to have a refresher, and I had never heard the story of the church or Jim’s background in such detail, so I found that very interesting. There are a lot of people I wish I could give this book to, but I’m not sure how well that would go over…so I will just leave it in my Little Free Library and hope it finds a good home!
The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe– I think The Chronicles of Narnia are my husband’s all-time favorite books, so when I asked him the other day which book I should read, I was not surprised that this was his recommendation. What did surprise me is how much I liked it! I have never been that into fantasy-type books or movies, and I guess I assumed this one was a little more out there than it was. But I liked the characters and the story and may even pick up some of the other books in the series!
I’ve also been reading a lot of childbirth/parenting books as we participate in our Bradley Childbirth classes….I’m saving those reviews for next month as we get closer to the arrival of our little guy! Do you guys have any reads you recommend as we close out the summer?