As I mentioned earlier, I read eight books last month, which is about double what I normally get through. I've tried to pinpoint how I managed to increase my reading hours but haven't really figured it out, besides maybe sticking to a screens-to-sleep bedtime around 9:30pm every night (and sometimes earlier!) and only reading after that. Oh, and maybe reading a couple under-150-pages books also helped a bit!
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I know I'm probably the last person on earth to finally read The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak. But I found a copy at the thrift store, which I figured was serendipitous, and finally dove into over the holidays. It was dark, humorous, and heart-breaking, like life itself in Germany in the 1940s. Now I just need to know - is the movie worth watching?
I have always loved Sherry and John, and their new book filled a void left by their departure from blogging. Lovable Livable Home is full of beautiful photographs of imperfect yet beautiful homes that don't feel like designer showcases. As a new(ish) parent, I also appreciate all the examples of family homes that give me hope for our own small space!
Packer has written a petite gem in this book that speaks to the power of weakness in the life of a Christian. Faith itself begins when we admit that don't have the strength to save ourselves, and the author walks through the implications of that truth in our relationships, suffering, and generosity. Under 150 pages long, Weakness Is The Way an easy read on the eyes but leaves your mind with lots to process.
I had to listen to the audiobook after watching the new BBC series over the New Year - how could I forget how dark and challenging Agatha Christie could be? And Then There Were None asks questions of justice, guilt, and vengeance without giving an easy answer (or any answer at all). It's not for the faint of heart or stomach. I might have to admit, though, that the screenwriters did a fantastic (and better?) job at tightening the plot and providing resolution at the end of the episodes than Christie did in her novel. So please, watch the miniseries and let me know what you think.
Andrew and I are very nouveau wine drinkers, and I just wanted a way to figure out what I was pouring into my glass at home. Wine Folly: The Essential Guide to Wine has some spectacular graphic charts that explain the science and flavor behind wines, different varietals, how best to drink and enjoy it, and why wine tastes differently depending on where it is grown. It's a great introduction to the art and science of wine drinking.
Another under-150-page book, The Treasure Principle gives compelling and exciting reasons for our lives to be shaped and defined by generosity to others. We have an opportunity to use our wealth to help others in need and to bring truth to the world - why would we turn away from that? It's a good place to start if you're trying to figure out what role generosity should play in your life.
Do I really need to introduce The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis? If I do, please drop what you're doing and get your eyes on a copy. Lewis writes a brilliant allegory of sin and redemption in the form of a children's fairy tale. I listened to the audiobook read by Michael York (not my favorite reader, but it's all my library had), and I found myself startled and laughing aloud at the spiritual meanings I rediscovered in the story. I'm hoping to make my way through the whole series this year.
I ended the month with a dark thriller that had the least amount of action of any thrillers I've read, yet just as much suspense. In The Likeness by Tana French, Cassie Maddox is an Irish detective who must go undercover as a murder victim in order to discover the identity and killer of the victim who took Cassie's fake undercover identity as her own. Confused yet? It's gritty and challenging, yet still finds resolution (if not happiness) by the end.
What I'm reading right now:
- The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer - I tried the book a few months ago, and it bombed on me. But I'm listening to the audiobook now and loving the different accents and characters coming through.
- Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline - A friend at work recommended this book to me, which had been sitting on my shelf since I found it at a thrift shop. I'm enjoying the cross between historical and modern-day fiction centered on orphans.
- The Meaning of Marriage by Timothy Keller - Andrew gave me this book for Christmas, and since February is lover's month, I figured it's a good chance to dive in. So far, I am challenged and refreshed by the author's reminders of what marriage was designed for.
What are you reading?
Linking up with Modern Mrs Darcy for Quick Lit.
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