All the books I read in my sweats in 2017

Welcome to the second annual installment of “all the books I read in my sweats” (and pajamas, and sometimes yoga pants) in 2017, in the exact order in which I read them of course. Because why would you bother making a list if you didn’t put things in order?

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings–Maya Angelou ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

It’s a classic for a reason.  If you haven’t read it, you should.  This was my first foray into Maya Angelou, and I will definitely put her other works on my “to-read” list for the future.

 

 

 

 

Falling Upward:  A spirituality for the two halves of life–Richard Rohr ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I really loved, and really needed, this book at this particular phase in my life.  Richard Rohr is a Franciscan priest at the Center for Action and Contemplation in New Mexico.  I call him my favorite monk, but I’m not sure that he’s really a monk.  But I call him my favorite monk, so there. I now subscribe to his daily emails and have stalked out most of his public speaking appearances on YouTube and all of the podcasts I can find.  He is a wise teacher and I am a total groupie.  I might need an intervention.  Anyhow, this is a book about spiritual development, if that is something you’re interested in (which I am!).  There is a lot of wisdom in this book.  I just bought my own copy and plan to read it again.


The Nightingale–Kristin Hannah⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I really liked this one, as did most of the people I know of who read it.  I have not been a big fan of Kristin Hannah in the past because I find some of her other books a little cheesy, especially the romance parts.  Eeew…romance.  Anyhow, this one had lots of tragedy to balance out the romance.  I’m all about tragedy.  The themes in this book are very similar to Sarah’s Key, which is a fantastic book as well.  In fact, at the end of the book Kristin Hannah acknowledges Tatiana De Rosnay, the author of Sarah’s Key, for helping her with her research for the book.  This is a nice long one if you’re looking for something to sink your teeth into (with a little cheese on top). This book had five-star potential, but I subtracted one star due to the cheese.

 

The Kind Worth Killing–Peter Swanson⭐️⭐️
This book was a real page-turner, but also I didn’t really like it.  Which is weird, I know.  Sometimes I will read a book like this and it is suspenseful enough to keep me reading, but the whole time I am also harshly critiquing it.  My major issue with this book is that the author seemed to give the reader almost too much information about what was going on in each character’s head, which kills some of the suspense.  The book is written from multiple points of view, and the author seems to just blurt out each character’s motives and internal dialogues.  Some of the twists and turns in the plot were a little lame and predictable. Just my $0.02.

 

The Underground Railroad–Colson Whitehead⭐️⭐️⭐️

I had high expectations of this book because of all the praise and attention it garnered, but it wasn’t my favorite.  In the context of the pre-civil war era, the author tells the story of Cora, a young black slave attempting to flee from slavery via the underground railroad, which is imaginatively contextualized in this book as an actual railroad.  I felt a little bogged down by this book for some reason.  I preferred The Invention of Wings (which I read a few years ago) which is set in the same time period with similar themes, and just blew me away.

 

 

Love Wins:  A book about heaven, hell, and the fate of every person who ever lived–Rob Bell⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is a book that will challenge the way that you think about heaven, hell, and God.  Is heaven a literal place?  Is hell?  Isn’t it incongruent to think that God would give us never-ending grace and forgiveness in this life with unlimited chances to believe in Him, but as soon as our physical bodies cross over into death, those who didn’t believe burn in the fires of hell? Or that God’s grace is only available to humans during these finite moments that we live in our physical bodies on Earth, despite the fact that those of us who are from a faith tradition typically believe in an infinite God who is beyond what the human brain can comprehend?  I myself am doing some deconstruction of my faith and found this book to be a breath of fresh air, a new way of looking at things without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.  I will read this one again.  Rob Bell got a lot of flack for writing this book, with many calling him a heretic.  That makes me like him even more.

 

The Other Boleyn Girl–Philippa Gregory⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is a historical fiction novel set in the era of King Henry XIII in the English Tudor Court.  This book was an excellent escape from everyday life.  It was scandalous without being too smutty.  When I first started reading I was a little put off with the treatment of women in that era, though I realize this is just a function of the time period.  Still–holy misogyny, Batman.  I read quite a bit of historical fiction but have never read anything set in this time period, and it was terribly fun to read.

 

 

 

Breath, Eyes, Memory–Edwidge Danticat ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

There were a lot of good things about this book that I really admired.  However, overall I felt that it is was missing something.  I was interested in reading it because the author is Haitian, and with my recent time in Haiti I have been wanting to read more and understand more about the culture, and was hoping to gain some of this unique perspective from Danticat.  I read that she started writing this book when she was 18 years old, and it was published when she was 25, which is just incredible.  So some of my issues with the book may have to do simply with the fact that she was not fully developed as an author at the time she wrote it.  I felt that it lacked a cohesive plot, and the pacing was perhaps a little too quick and left me wanting for a little more in the way of character development.  The story itself was pretty sad, so I wouldn’t recommend reading this if you are down in the dumps.  That said, I am interested in reading more of her work and, despite the drawbacks I just mentioned, I was engaged in the book.  It left me wanting to understand more about Haitian culture, and to read more from this unique author.

 

The Enneagram:  A Christian Perspective–Richard Rohr ⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
I love the Enneagram.  It is such a neat tool for self-discovery and personal growth.  Though the Enneagram sounds really “woo woo” and “out there” and “new age”, it’s not.  It is an ancient personality typing system which can be used to understand yourself and others better.  If you have ever taken a Myers-Briggs personality test and enjoyed learning more about yourself in that way, then you would probably enjoy this as well.  It is strangely accurate.  I’m a “one” on the Enneagram, by the way.  This book is written by my favorite monk, Richard Rohr, but it is not my favorite book on the Enneagram.  It is a little heavy and wordy.  If you are interested in learning more about the Enneagram, I suggest The Road Back to You by Suzanne Stabile and Ian Cron instead, which is easier to understand for beginners and gives an excellent overview of all the types (there is also a Road Back to You podcast, available on iTunes, which I enjoyed also; and Ian Cron has an additional podcast called Typology).  Of note, my husband started reading up on the Enneagram, since I have been talking about it for a whole year, and he is sold on it too.

 

The Art of Racing in the Rain–Garth Stein ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Just the sweetest, most touching book to read.  Written from Enzo’s point of view–a wise, funny, and beautiful dog who tells the story of his family’s love, loss, and rebuilding.  You will fall in love with Enzo.  One of my favorites this year.

 

 

 

 

 

Unbroken–Laura Hillenbrand ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This book recounts the true story of Louis Zamperini, a running prodigy turned WWII pilot whose plane went down, leaving him and his com padres stranded in the middle of the ocean. This book is, in a word, stunning.  The story is rich, interesting, and well-paced.  The writing is gorgeous.  There is a good reason that this book is a bestseller-turned-major motion picture.  Highly recommended!

 

 

 

What is the Bible:  How an ancient library of poems, letters, and stories can transform the way you think and feel about everything–Rob Bell ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Another illuminating read from Rob Bell.  He offers a fresh perspective on the Bible, discussing how we can look at it as true without holding tightly to some of the strictly literal interpretations that we are used to hearing in Christian circles.  It’s on my Kindle, and I plan to read it again.

 

 

 

 

Little Bee–Chris Cleave ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This excellent book is about a Nigerian refugee, Little Bee, whose life tragically intersects with Sarah, an English woman with a troubled marriage.  It was sad, tragic, hopeful, tender, all of it.  I loved it.

 

 

 

 

 

Present Over Perfect–Shauna Neiquist ⭐️⭐️⭐️ and 1/2

For this one, I picked up the audio book format, which I sometimes do if we have a long car trip or I need to spice up my commute.  I enjoyed hearing about this author’s personal journey for a less harried, more peaceful life, letting go of the “hustle” and need to prove and please.  She is warm and relatable, but the book was a little on the long side for me, with some of the material becoming repetitive after a while.  It was a good listen, though I’m not sure if I would have had the patience to get all the way through it in tradidional book form.

 

 

Bird by Bird: Some thoughts on writing and on life–Anne Lamott⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Anne Lamott is so awesome.  In all of her books, she manages to show up as her neurotic, darkly humorous, borderline suicidal, imperfect self in the most endearing way.  She is wickedly funny and profoundly wise.  This book is a collection of her insights related to her writing process (spoiler: she approaches writing with all of those same neuroses and imperfections, and uses them instead of fighting them), weaved in with her insights about life.  I laughed out loud, a lot, while reading this book.  Even if you are not a writer, there is a wealth of wisdom to be mined from this book.

 

 

In a Dark, Dark Wood–Ruth Ware ⭐️
Meh.  This was another one of those books that sets itself up to be a suspenseful psychological thriller but lacked the depth necessary for me to wholeheartedly recommend it.  Fluffy beach-read at best.  I would put this in the same category as The kind worth killing, discussed earlier.

 

 

 

 

The Sound of Gravel–Ruth Wariner ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💥💥💥💥💥💥💥
This book is a riveting memoir about the author’s childhood and coming-of-age in a polygamist cult.  This book blew me away.  I can’t stop thinking about it.  I don’t want to tell you anything else about it because I don’t want to spoil the unfolding.  What I will say is that it is beautifully written, brave, surreal, and reads more like fiction than a memoir.  In fact, most of the time I wished that it was fiction, as no one should have to endure the pain that Ms. Wariner courageously recounts.  This book is my pick of the year!

 

 

Brain on Fire–Susannah Cahalan ⭐️⭐️⭐️
This memoir that had the unfair disadvantage of being read by me after The Sound of Gravel.  Just like a mother tries not to compare her children, I tried not to compare this memoir to my previously stated favorite.  But I did, I can’t help it.  Anyway, this one is a real-life medical mystery, recounting the author’s experience with a rare neurological diagnosis.  If you like the TV show House, I predict you will enjoy this book.  I felt a little lukewarm about it, for reasons that are not entirely clear to me.

 

 

 

Mothers and other strangers–Gina Sorell ⭐️⭐️

I almost liked this book, which was confusing for me.  I found the beginning of the book hard to get into, but by the middle I was starting to get invested in the main character, Elsie, as she struggled through her grief after the death of her mother, a selfish narcissist who was largely absent for most of Elsie’s youth.  All this fantastic character development, the plot started to thicken and –then she meets her long lost aunt in the last chapter, who gives her all the answers she needed for closure.  It felt anti-climactic, almost a lazy way to end it.

 

 

Of Mess and Moxie–Jen Hatmaker ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Oh man, why can’t Jen Hatmaker be my friend in real life?  I loved this spunky, honest, and hilarious book of short essays on everything:  parenting, faith, childhood memories, failure, grace, girlfriends, Netflix binges, dreams, doldrums, and all the messy parts of life.  My favorite chapter was the one on exercise–it had me laughing out loud!

 

 

 

Finding God in the Waves–Mike McHargue ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

god in the wavesThis is a really compelling, really honest memoir by Mike McHargue, also known as “Science Mike”.  Born and raised in a Southern Baptist evangelical church, he describes his crisis of faith brought on after he studied the Bible through the eyes of a scientist.  Not surprisingly, his questions were not well received by his church, his Christian friends, or his family, nor was the fact that he lived as a “closet atheist” for two years.  He describes his journey, along with an encounter with God that lead him to put some of the pieces of his faith back together, with science as the glue.  I enjoyed it.  His scientific insights were enlightening and his honesty was refreshing.

 

Looking through my list for this year, I notice that my reading was a little light on fiction, which is something I would like to read more of in 2018.  Talk to me.  What were your favorites this year?  I want to know your hits and misses this year, of any genre.  Let’s build our repertoire for 2018!

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All the books I read in my sweats in 2016

It’s no secret:  I love reading.  If there was a way for me to sit on my couch in my comfy pants and read all the books I wanted to read and get paid for it–with health care, vision, dental, and a 401 K–well, can you say dream job?  Alas, I have yet to find a professional opportunity that meets that description.  I would have really made an excellent librarian though, can’t believe I didn’t think of that at the tender age of 18 when committing myself to a lifelong profession even though I hardly knew anything about myself then and yet I had to make all these ridiculously important choices that would permanently alter the course of my life and shape me forever.  ANYWAY.  Since I don’t want to go back to school to be a librarian, and nobody seems to want to pay me to read books in my sweats, I have to do it on my own time, for free.  So, I thought it would be fun to share all the books I read (in my sweats) in 2016:

Go Set a Watchman–Harper Lee ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I am embarrassed to say that I never read To Kill a Mockingbird until last year.  I know most people read this book in high school, but for some reason, it was never on my reading list.   I didn’t have much of an interest in picking it up as an adult because it was a “school book”, which sounded like it wouldn’t be much fun.   When I finally did read it last year, I discovered why it is a timeless classic.  Truth be told, I don’t know if I would have fully appreciated such a work as a high school student.  I probably would have rushed through it and missed all of the nuances of the book.  So, after falling in love with TKAM, I was quite excited to read Ms. Lee’s long-awaited sequel.

Her writing is beautiful and thought-provoking, with our favorite characters from TKAM all grown up.  I do love Scout, so feisty and idealistic, ready to take on the world and unwilling to conform to the expectations of her small-town upbringing.  It is so interesting (and infuriating) to me that the issues of race and white supremacy are still as relevant today as when she  published TKAM in 1960.

The buzz when this book came out was that it portrayed Atticus as a racist, which turns out to not be entirely true.  Atticus, like all of us, is a mix of dark and light, good and bad, redeeming and unredeeming qualities.  We see him trying to live out his moral convictions in a very broken society that does not share his views and is fiercely trying to maintain the status quo.  As the story unfolds, we see Scout’s perception of Atticus change, as it does for all of us when we grow up and find out that our parents are just people, with flaws and faults, and the pedestal we had placed them on starts to topple.

Overall, I loved the book, mostly because of my preexisting relationship with the characters.  I found the plot less compelling than TKAM, but still a good follow-up to this classic.

 

How to be here: A guide to creating a life worth living–Rob Bell  ⭐️⭐️

Rob Bell just seems like he is everywhere these days, so I needed to check out at least one of his books.  I still want to read some of his other offerings, but this one left me feeling a little flat.  It was a pretty quick read with short, manageable chapters and upbeat, encouraging language for all you optimists out there.  His main point is that we are all part of the ongoing work of creation, and therefore all work is creative work.  We need to find our “ikigai” (a Japanese word meaning our “reason for being”), which is constantly evolving, and learn about our own selves and our gifts so that we can offer the world the fullest expression of ourselves.  Overall, I found the content…forgettable.  And maybe just a little too shiny-happy-people-holding-hands for my taste.  Which makes me wonder if I missed the point of the book.  Full disclosure, I did read this book when I was very sick with a sinus infection and hopped up on cold medicine, so it is possible I did not absorb HTBH it to its fullest extent.
When Helping Hurts–Steve Corbett  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I read this book in preparation for my short-term missions experience in April, and it rocked my world.  As a Christian, I have been socialized to go out in the world and help others, show mercy through action, and to do good in His name.  Those of us who live in privileged Western societies sometimes look beyond our borders and see our brothers and sisters in third-world countries suffering hunger, thirst, war, and oppression and we feel the natural desire to help.  Often, our efforts toward poverty alleviation are directed closer to home.  This book explores how our efforts both at home and abroad, though well-intentioned, can actually cause harm to those we set out to serve by reinforcing dependence, robbing people of their dignity, setting up an unequal relationship that fosters a “God-complex”, and even suppressing the local economy through donations and relief aid.  There are many excellent stories and examples in the book, along with practical strategies for those who wish to be involved in poverty alleviation.  I plan to read this one again, as the content is rich and I will need to refresh my memory on the concepts in this book.

 

Reconstructing Amelia–Kimberley McCreight  ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This one was a serious page turner, and I was excited to read it, since some had lauded it as “the next Gone Girl“.  I read this shortly after my birthday in my new hammock, and finished it in a week.  The plot is a modern day mystery, with a teenage girl found dead after falling off the roof at school.  Her mother is unable to accept the school’s explanation that her daughter Amelia committed suicide, and sets to work piecing together clues to find out what happened to her daughter.  The story was compelling and kept me reading, but I was unsatisfied with the ending.  I think it was a decent read, especially if you are looking for a “summer beach read”.  However, it was far too one-dimensional to be “the next Gone Girl“, which, in my opinion, was brilliantly crafted.

 

All the light we cannot see–Anthony Doerr ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51M0flyB4bL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

 

This is a beautiful work of historical fiction, set in occupied France during World War II.  This book was highly acclaimed and the winner of a Pulitzer Prize, and I agree that the writing is beautiful and the plot very interesting.  However, there were several times I got a little weighed down by the descriptive prose, and the story sometimes moved a little too slow for my taste.  That aside, I am sure this much-loved novel will become a classic.

 

 
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear–Elizabeth Gilbert ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This one I enjoyed as an audio book on our way to the Adirondacks for our summer vacation.  It was pretty interesting to listen to, and had some good advice for artists and non-artists alike about how to let go of fear and embrace your inner creativity.  There are some good stories and anecdotes, and the book is well written.  While it is interesting to get a peek into Ms. Gilbert’s creative process, I found this book very…self-promoting (I had similar feelings about Eat, Pray, Love).  She talks about herself a lot.  It reads more like a memoir, though it is not advertised in that genre.  Generally speaking I find her, as a person, quite insightful.  I follow her on Facebook and usually find her to be encouraging, brave, and authentic.  Did I feel inspired to tap into my creative side by the time I completed the book?  Yes.  Was I also tired of hearing Liz G. talk about herself?  Yes.  P.S.-Don’t tell Liz I said that about her book, I really want her to like me.
Homegoing–Yaa Gyasi ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If I had to describe this book in one word:  WOW.  Blew me away.  This brilliant story chronicles the lives of two half-sisters in Ghana in the 18th century.  One sister is sold into slavery and travels from the Gold Coast of Africa to America, and the other sister is married off to a slave trader and remains in Ghana.  The story then follows the family lines of both sisters over the ensuing centuries, exploring the contrasting cultural, racial, socioeconomic, and family issues that arise on both sides.  Historical fiction is my absolute favorite genre!  I learned so much about the African slave trade while highly engaged in this compelling story.

 

 

The Book of Negroes–Lawrence Hill ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Listen up.  You need to read this book.  I am officially bestowing unto The Book of Negroes the award for my favorite book out of all the books I read this year in the category of fiction.  That is a big deal, people.  Extra points because the author is Canadian!  Way to represent the homeland Mr. Hill.  This book just broke my heart over and over and left me spent and exhausted and emotionally drained in the absolute best way by the end.  Doesn’t that sound fun?  A light read it is not, but I am not a big fan of those “fluffy” beach reads.  This here is something you can sink your teeth into.  I can’t even tell you anything about the plot because I don’t want to spoil it.  Just read it for yourself.

 

 

Love Warrior: A Memoir–Glennon Doyle Melton ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This book was so highly anticipated for me because I am a Glennon Doyle Melton fangirl.  I loved her first book, Carry On Warrior, and I am an avid follower of her blog, Momastery.  And yes, I took a short trip Atlanta to see her when she was on her book tour, and it was awesome.  And now I sound like a groupie.  Or a stalker.  Anyhow, what I love about her writing is her honest, authentic voice.  There is no facade here, no putting her best face forward so that what people see and hear is some cropped and perfected and photo-shopped version of her.  In Love Warrior, Glennon gives us the gift of her pain, and what she learned about herself from it.  She doesn’t sugar-coat her journey or tie it up all neat with a bow by the end, or give you 10 simple steps to work through it.  Her story is both nothing and everything like my own journey.  This one wins the award for my favorite book out of all the books I read this year, in the category of non-fiction.
Haiti: The God of tough places, the Lord of burnt men–Richard Frechette ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is a sweet little book full of essays by Father Rick Frechette, who is both a Catholic priest and a medical doctor.  He is the medical director for NPH Haiti and St. Damien’s Pediatric Hospital in Port-au-Prince.  I had the privilege of  hearing Father Rick speak at an event at a local church and it was so interesting and beautiful to hear from this humble, godly man and to witness his devotion to this country and its people.  Thanks to my good friend Kris for loaning me her copy, which is still on my nightstand needing to be returned!  I guess Kris and I should have lunch sometime soon so I can get that back to her!

 

Mudbound–Hillary Jordan ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I was actually really surprised by how much I loved this book.  It ended up being one of my top 5 favorites this year.  I downloaded it on my Kindle because it was available at the library and I wanted something to read that week, and it turned out to be a real standout.  Set in 1946 on the Mississippi Delta, the author explores the issues of racism, white supremacy, and racial violence in the Jim Crow south, telling us the story of two war heroes (one black, one white) who returned to their families at the end of WWII.  The character development in this book was top-notch.  I can’t wait to read what she writes next.

 

 

Wild: From lost to found on the Pacific Crest Trail–Cheryl Strayed ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This well-publicized memoir was a good read, but I saw the movie before I read the book so I think I probably spoiled if for myself.  I liked reading about the author’s personal journey through grief and addiction toward wholeness, but some of the details in the book became repetitive after a while.  (Spoiler alert:  lots of hiking with unpredictable weather, and her feet were sore a lot!)  Overall, a well-written book by an author whose 20’s were way more eventful than mine.

 

 

 

Changing our MindDavid P. Gushee ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If I had to describe this book in one word, it would be:  IMPORTANT.  This book explores the issues of homosexuality and homosexual marriage in the modern Christian church, and argues for full inclusion and acceptance of LBGTQ people in the church.  As an evangelical Christian, I have struggled over the years with how to reconcile what I have always been taught in the church about homosexuality and gay marriage with my own personal beliefs and the changing political landscape of our day.  This book addresses the issues from a biblical perspective, as the author takes us on his personal theological journey from one side of the coin (against homosexual relationships and gay marriage in the Christian church) to the other (in support of inclusion and homosexual marriage).  This book contains a lot of wisdom, and I think it would be helpful for anyone wrestling with questions about this issue, whether or not you come to the same conclusion as the author by the end of the book.
Mountains beyond mountains: The quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a man who would cure the worldTracy Kidder  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This book is a biography of Paul Farmer, an American physician who started working in Haiti very early in his career as a medical student and ended up co-founding Partners In Health, a non-profit organization currently operating in some of the world’s poorest countries with the goal of bringing modern medicine to the world’s poorest communities by providing a “preferential option for the poor”.  This was a fascinating read about a very quirky, driven, idealistic man with big dreams and a lot of tenacity.  The writing was excellent.  I tried to read one of the books that Farmer himself wrote earlier this year and wasn’t able to get through it due to the boredom quotient, but this one kept me reading.

 

The road back to you: An Enneagram Journey to self-discovery–Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I heard about this book on another blog I follow, and I loved it!  The Enneagram sounds very New Age, but it is really an ancient wisdom tradition that provides a model of looking at the human personality and behavior.  For those of you who are familiar with other personality theories, such as the Meyers-Briggs model, this is similar, though also in a category of its own.  The Enneagram divides personality into nine types, and this book describes each in detail with the goal of discovering more about your own type to lead you into greater self-understanding and self-compassion.  I discovered that I am a classic “One” on the Enneagram, and was able to understand more about the other types as well (and also identify the “numbers” of many of my loved ones and friends!).  I definitely want to read another book on this topic next year.  This was more of an overview, for those who are new to the concept.

 

So, what’s on my reading list for next year?  So far I plan to read:

I know why the caged bird sings: Maya Angelou  I am half-way through this one, but didn’t finish it in time to put it on my 2016 list!  My first Maya Angelou book.  I am late to the party.

Falling Upward: Richard Rohr  Waiting for me at the library right now!  Can’t wait!

The Silent Sister: Diane Chamberlain  Also waiting at the library!

The Nightingale: Kristin Hannah  My sister loaned me this one at Christmas.  Both my mom and my sister gave this top marks.  It will have to wait a month or so until after I finish the library books.

The Other Boleyan Girl: Phillipa Gregory  Also on loan from my sister, who has great taste in books.

The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective: Richard Rohr  As a follow-up to The Road Back to You.  I recently learned about Richard Rohr and I am becoming a junkie.

The Underground Railroad: Colson Whitehead  So excited to read this one after hearing rave reviews about this award-winner.

Breath, Eyes, Memory: Edwidge Danticat  This was published almost 20 years ago, but after finding out that the author is Haitian, and the story is set in Haiti, I definitely want to read it.

So, talk to me!  What did you read this year?  What do you hope to read next year?  I gotta go, I have a lot of reading to catch up on!!  So many books, so little time!