Hit the Books.
I’ve been as good at reading the last two weeks as I have at vacuuming. It’s not going so hot. As much as I feel like it’s a priority & an enjoyable part of my life (the reading part– NOT the vacuuming), it’s just not happening. There are three time slots reading can take place: early morning, nap time, & night. You would think we could make this work with ease. It’s reading, after all, not marathon training– & not even boring reading, but the engaging reads you get to choose for yourself. And still, night comes, & I find myself in bed being serenaded by a Friends re-run because that’s all the brainpower I want to muster.
So as much as I hope this post is enjoyable for you & maybe gives you a new title or two to add to your list, it’s also a reminder for myself that books are worthy of my time.
I perused my bookshelf & picked my favorite reads from this quick-flying year of 2015. I don’t consider myself a huge reader, even though I do love it, possibly because for every one book I read, I find ten more I need to read next. I’m also not a fast reader—if it’s thought provoking, I sometimes read out loud just to make sure I’m wrapping my mind around the content. I still managed to make it through some solid reads this year taking it one page at a time. There are too many favorites from the year to share in one post, so look for the completed list in another week or two.
Small Victories, Anne Lamott (memoir)
This woman’s brain is a worthy one to pick, & we get to by reading her stories. She is incredibly genuine— her stories are some of the most vulnerable I’ve ever read. Many of her stories carry brokenness in its characters, but still, she finds a way to constantly bring light to people & their situations. She makes this happen through her love for Jesus & her faith in his love.
Favorite Quote: “Nothing can be delicious when you are holding your breath. For something to be delicious, you have to be present to savor it, and presence is in attention & in the flow of breath.” (100)
Where’d You Go, Bernadette, Maria Semple (fiction)
Bernadette is this mystery of a woman living in Seattle with her husband and fifteen-year old daughter, Bee. She’s opinionated & doesn’t seem to have a large appetite for life, in a humorous way, if you can believe it. Add in a boat trip to Antarctica, & you have yourself a festive mystery of a read.
Sparkly Green Earrings, Melanie Shankle (memoir)
This was actually a book I could handle reading just before falling asleep at night because the chapters are short. It’s charming, funny, & teaches big lessons through everyday life of being a mom. It made me feel like I can be brave enough to one day take a minivan full of kids on a road trip across Texas.
Favorite Quote: “I watched her with the crab as she ignored all my admonitions that the poor crab just needed to be set free if he was to have any chance of surviving. And God showed up there on that beach to teach me a lesson. Nothing survives when it’s being smothered. Life, real life, requires being free to move about in the great big ocean, not being cradled in little hot hands that will stifle independence and creativity. We can’t keep our crabs (or our kids) in a bucket and expect them to go far in life.” (borrowed book so page number not found—sorry!)
Speak, Nish Weiseth (memoir)
The concept of being a storyteller verses an opinion-giver is valuable beyond understanding in our culture. This book is such an encouragement that we are each living a story, & we can use our story for Good.
Favorite Quote: “This kind of mundane routine is not celebrated in our culture. Every time we turn on a TV, flip through a magazine, or even pick up a book, we’re told, over & over again, something that isn’t true: the stories we are living with our lives are not enough.” (182)
Up Next Wednesday (to the tune of 12 Days of Christmas): 3 memoirs, 2 works of fiction, & a nice hot toddy (…if you make one to sip while you read, that is.)