Checking in here to talk about my favorite reads of the year! I met my goal in books, thanks to hoopla & being a SAHM (also 2 months of insomnia where I literally read all night long.)
Here are my top picks out of what I read:
Top Christian Books:
- The End of Anxiety – Truly the best book on anxiety I have read. The title is ironic, because he talks about in the first chapter how you can’t end anxiety. You just learn to work through it with the Lord. He’s honest & relatable. And points to the ultimate prescription for anxiety is getting to know the Lord & loving other people.
- Abide in Me by Andrew Murray – This is a 30 day devotional that is really deep. He breaks down John 15 so thoroughly. It took me a long time to get through it because it’s so packed & challenging. I really recommend it for anxious hearts or depressed persons. Or anyone who wants to learn what it means to abide in Christ.
- Emotionally Healthy Discipleship (halfway through, really like it) – I’m not finished with this yet! But, so far – REALLY good. Jeri told me about it and I’m so thankful. The need to be emotionally healthy in discipleship, as we are Christ’s ambassadors, is definitely something I’d like to focus on next year with my friends.
- Imagine Heaven – This was a great one to read specifically during the worst months this year. I always had a hard time being comforted by the thought that if I were to die I’d be in heaven. After reading this book, my confidence that heaven exists increased so greatly, and it’s starting to be a comfort to me. I really like the reporting style of this book. Lots of stories that happened to real people that are just true. I’d recommend it for Christians and non.
Top Fun Books:
- Anna Karenina – Y’all this should count as 3 books. I think it took my 3 months. I like depressing romances, but a goal of mine is to be as deep as Ian (whose preferred reading is Russian authors.) But man, this was so good, so tragic. I love the themes and the philosophy each characters struggled through. It’s not a very happy ending, but a real one. Lots of thoughts about God and meaning, too, that I wish people wrote more about in today’s books.
- The Princess and the Goblin – Probably a new favorite. Macdonald inspired CS Lewis & Tolkien. This is one of this kids books (I also read Phantasties and liked it, but I like this one better.) It’s truly scary, funny, easy to read & a touching picture of love & faith & youth.
- A Man Called Ove – My friend Anne & Alexis both recommended this. It’s so heartwarming & heartbreaking. I love the idea of not judging someone until you know their story. And what kindness & initiation can do to change someone’s life.
- Harry Potter (lol) – yes I effing read it again this year OK SHOOT ME.
- 1984 – I can’t believe I’ve never read it! Obviously it’s a classic with a thought provoking plot! Yes, everyone should read it.
Books I read that were OK & wouldn’t recommend:
- Where the Crawdads Sing
- A Song of Achilles
- Fantastic Beasts & Where to find them
The irony is that the result of my reading has lead me to a different goal next year: instead of reading so much, I want to make a point to spend time in silence. A few of the books I read made great points about our need for silence before the Lord, and how little of that we truly get. It’s true. I am constantly consuming – podcasts, books, audio books, TV, news… I think this year I still want to read. But I also want to reflect & listen to the lord. Learn to sort out my feelings before him. Learn to hear his voice for my life and my friends. Let myself have peace, because I always like to go.
Anyway, I’m thankful for books. Books full of wisdom about god. Or relating to pain in a way that makes you feel seen. Books that take you into another world for a minute to get some relief, or to open your eyes to how little your perspectives really are. Books that help you understand someone else or think about them in a way you never did before. I love books. And I’ve loved reading them this year.