When it comes to my books and my earrings, the bigger the better ;) Sooooo WARNING: ginormous book blog post ahead, proceed with caution :)
2015 is zooming by and I have serious doubts that I'll make my goal of reading 150 books this year (I'm at 80 so far). Already, some pretty amazing books topped my list and I thought I would share a few here with you. Okay, obviously that turned into more than a few, but asking me to narrow down books is simply cruel. I didn't get a chance to review every single book pictured, but they are all worthy reads!
For the Love – Jen Hatmaker is hilarious! Her book had me laughing and wiping tears alongside really thought provoking topics that have lingered long after the pages were done. I listened to this on audiobook, and it made the book so much more enjoyable to hear her reading it.
ME, Myself, and Bob – I heard Phil Vischer speak at a work as worship conference, and I immediately got his book. His story of the building a company and the tragedy of losing it all is told with such humility and transparency that it pulls you in. I connected with the author on so many levels, and even though it’s not a typical happily ever after story, it left me encouraged and hopeful!
Primates of Park Avenue – Pretty fascinating read on the lives of Upper East Side Mommies of the Uber wealthy set. At first it was easy to read and gasp at all the lavishness, but the funny witty way the author writes, pulls you in and I confess to getting a lump in my throat by the book’s end. Female relationships fascinate me and this book provided plenty of material.
Americanah – I can not even come close to summarizing the genius that this book is, so I’ll let someone say it on my behalf. "Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's fourth book, Americanah, is so smart about so many subjects that to call it a novel about being black in the 21st century doesn't even begin to convey its luxurious heft and scope. Americanah is indeed a novel about being black in the 21st century — in America, Great Britain and Africa, while answering a want ad, choosing a lover, hailing a cab, eating collard greens, watching Barack Obama on television — but you could also call it a novel of immigration and dislocation, just about every page tinged with faint loneliness." -- NPR So yeah, that.
The Garden of Burning Sand + A Walk Across the Sun. Corban Addison is one of my new faves. He can evocatively write about some of the most horrific crimes against humanity with a clear sense of accuracy and no whitewash brush in sight without leaving you feeling grimy or depressed; simply inspired and hopeful. His newest is coming out in October, and I’m already looking forward to getting my hands on it.
Written in the Stars – Oh this book threw me for a loop. It is Young Adult fiction, so it starts out feeling fairly light and high school-y. A young Pakistani girl is in love with a boy her parents don’t approve of. You think you know where this story will go and then it takes you for a loop. And when you think the roller coaster ride is over it starts again ending a place with depth and emotion. I think I devoured this in 2 days.
Tiffany Girl – I love a good love story, and boy does DeeAnn Gist know how to deliver. This tale wove in so many fascinating details from the history of the Tiffany Lamp, life in Chicago around the time of The World’s Fair, living in boarding houses, the women’s rights movement; so much goodness. And then of course there’s the love story. I’m a fan of Gist in general, and this one of hers tops my list.
Shoulda Woulda Christmas – Favorite Author Alert! I love Michelle Stimpson. Her writing is funny and candid and Biblical truths are woven through in culturally relevant ways. This read was no exception. It’s an ebook, so it was a super quick read. The story idea is a familiar one, looking back on all the what-ifs of life and how things would look if you’d gone right at that crossroads instead of left. I think I read this at a time when I needed to be reminded of how much gratitude and perspective affects today.
The Glass Castle – Not quite sure how I’ve gone so long without knowing about this book, but goodness gracious it is fascinating. In a reeeeeally large nutshell, it’s a memoir of a most unconventional childhood. You are partially in shock and horror at the upbringing the author had, and then blown away by the treasures gleamed along the way.
Kept – I confess, I picked this one up because A) it was on Kindle Unlimited and I had a free month trial. And B) I was intrigued because several reviews compared it to Francine Rivers’ Redeeming Love. Now you don’t make a comparison like that unless the book has serious chops. I went into it slightly skeptical because the bar was set so high, and I literally did not stop reading until I finished the book….all 423 pages of it. Yes, it was that good. I don’t think the Redeeming Love comparison is right simply because I wouldn’t say it’s the same style of direct allegory to a Biblical story. However, it blew me away.
Girl In Translation – I’m always fascinated by the immigrant experience and this book did not disappoint. A young girl emigrates from Hong Kong with her mother and ends up striving to be a model student by day and a sweatshop worker after hours. The story is beautifully told and quite compelling. I look forward to reading more from Jean Kwok
Nobody’s Cuter Thank You – I love my girlfriends, and this book was a wonderful reminder and celebration of the beauty of female friendships. I appreciated the candor and humor with which Melanie shared about her own friendships from sandbox days until the present. It had me laughing and grabbing for a Kleenex. Leaves you with lots of warm and fuzzies. I think this book is my favorite of the Big Mama Blog author Melanie Shankle.
Hidden Blessings – I am so grateful for Kim Cash Tate’s voice in the world of fiction. I love her contemporary writing style, her exploration of spiritual truths, relevant moral issues and that the cast of characters is always racially diverse. So yes; love her, love this book. And it has a love story + photography as well?? I’m sold!
Are you a book lover? Let me know what are some of your recent good reads! Did you like this post? Please share if you did, I'm happy to write more of these if the interest is there.