Some were gifts, some were authored by friends, some were life-changing. These are the books I read in 2013:
- One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp It took me a couple chapters to tune my internal ear to her unique voice, but once I did, I couldn’t put this book down. Her commitment to thanksgiving in the mundane of normal life combined with her lyrical writing made this not only the first, but one of the best, books I read last year.
- Half the Sky by Sheryl WuDunn I read this book in one day. It was like seeing something too horrifying to look away. It extensively covers the issues women face around the globe today. The combination of personal stories and powerful statistics help make the book a compelling call to action.
- Not For Sale by David Batstone I read this book after I finished the later. It’s another compilation of statistics and personal stories covering horrific atrocities around the world, this one focused specifically on human slavery from sex slaves to labor slaves.
- Grace-Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel I haven’t read many, but this is hands-down the best parenting book I’ve ever read.
- Help, Thanks, Wow by Anne Lamott This is a quick read, and while I like the simplicity of prayers as help, thanks and wow, I didn’t love this book as much as others by her.
- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe It was an interesting, African literature read.
- The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell Like all Malcolm books, this is a thorough case for a simple idea. The Tipping Point explores what makes trends or products or social changes crossover into expanding popularity. It’s an interesting read.
- Mom Connection by Tracey Bianchi This is a former MOPS book exploring ways moms can find meaningful connections outside their mother-child relationships. I enjoyed the book.
- Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth This book had some great ideas, but I’m still sleep deprived.
- Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion I read this book to see an essay master at work. It’s a collection of essays covering California in the 60s. Some of the content was interesting, but mostly, I was reading for style.
- A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans I had to see what all the hype was about. Rachel attempts to (loosely) follow Biblical instructions for woman with a specific focus for each month for one year. I enjoyed the pieces she learned from a Jewish friend along her journey, but many things seemed trivialized. It certainly shows that no one is truly, literally, a Biblical woman.
- Cling by Denise Lilly I did actually read my own book. 🙂
- Losing God by Matt Rogers This is a personal account of doubt and depression. It’s a memoir more than instruction or insightful.
- Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom For some reason I never read this book, so when I found it for a quarter, I figured I might as well. Unfortunately, I found it over-hyped.
- Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jaime Ford I really enjoyed this book of historical fiction. It takes place in Seattle during WWII when Japanese people were forced into internment camps. It does a great job of educating on a certain era while offering a compelling story line.
- MomSense by Jean Blackmer Another former MOPS book. This book talks about honing your mom smarts and trusting your gut.
- Love Does by Bob Goff I first met Bob in Donald Miller’s A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, and he struck me as a very intriguing character. Love Does shares short stories from his peculiar life of doing random acts of love for strangers. I recommend it.
- Some Assembly Required by Anne Lamott This is a sort of sequel to her Operating Instructions book. Some Assembly Required journals the first year of her grandson. I didn’t enjoy it like I did Operating Instructions. It focused too much on her, often taking random tangents.
- Diamonds from the Corner by L.E. Hughes L.E. is a local Mainer living in Stratton. She writes a column for the Irregular. Diamonds from the Corner is a hilarious read covering tidbits from visitors to her bed and breakfast and the young children she teaches skiing to. The book is very entertaining!
- Jesus Wept by Barbara Cawthorne Crafton This is another personal memoir of depression and faith. Barbara also draws on other people’s experiences.
- The Solace of Open Spaces by Gretel Ehrlich Gretel moves to Wyoming and learns to shepherd. I read the book for style, and found most pages filled with stunning, lyrical quotes. There wasn’t much of a storyline though.
- The Jesus Diet by Robin Merrill Robin is a friend, and editor of Cling! The devotional book offers snippets for spiritually surrendering to battles involving food.
- Second Suns by David Oliver Relin This is the true tale of two doctors attempting to cure blindness worldwide. Most of the book covers their endeavors in Nepal, where they’ve performed countless cataract surgeries in some of the most remote places in the world. It’s very thorough, interesting and inspiring.