Friday, July 29, 2011

Books of 2011 - Part 1

So, as you know, I love lists. One of the lists I keep, as of 2009, is Books I've Read. If you want you can check out the 2009 list and the 2010 list. I usually post this at the end of the year, but I thought it wouldn't hurt to do it now and then do a part 2 later in the year....since I have the time to do it. Anyway, I digress. Without further ado, here are the books I've read so far this year:

  1. A Grief Observed, C.S. Lewis
    I cried most of the way through. I think it was my way of grieving the death of some friends. I'm thankful for Lewis's eloquence in the midst of grief. My words fail me all too often.

  2. The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, Amy Chua
    This woman is nuts. I have no idea how her pace is sustainable. I would like to know if she takes meds to regulate her blood pressure. One thing is for sure - it worked for her kids. Kuddos to her!

  3. Choosing to See, Mary Beth Chapman
    Wow. Kleenex please. Mary Beth Chapman is brave to tell the story of losing her precious Maria. She continues the story with God's faithfulness in bringing them through the hard times.

  4. The Help, Kathryn Stockett
    Had I not been reading this while school was in session, I would have read it in a day. I wanted to read it every waking moment...I couldn't wait to know what was going to happen next. Seriously kept me on the edge of my seat!
    One of my friends has always mentioned how stupid women can be when they decide to tear each other apart rather than come together - seriously, girls can be so MEAN!! The Help would be an example of both sides - encourage/tear down. I hope we're wise enough to rise above...
    "Wasn't that the point of the book? For women to realize, We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I'd thought."

  5. Something Borrowed, Emily Griffin
    Mindless reading. Sometimes we need it. Cheesy.

  6. Something Blue, Emily Griffin
    See #5

  7. Leota's Garden, Francine Rivers
    CHEESY!! It has a good message of forgiving and reconciling relationships, but I say it was a big piece of cheese! I still think Redeeming Love is her best book! I also heard that the Mark of the Lion series is really good too. I'll get to it eventually.

  8. Passport through Darkness: A True Story of Danger and Second Chances, Kimberly L. Smith
    Wow. This makes me question how much I'm willing to sacrifice for the sake of the gospel. Serving Christ is not cookie cutter or safe, per se.

  9. This Time Together: Laughter & Reflection, Carol Burnett
    HILARIOUS! She makes me want to find the humor in the simple things in life. Laughing is good medicine after all. If you decide to read it, when you get to the chapter "Fans" imagine me laughing out loud.

  10. How to Get a Date Worth Keeping, Henry Cloud
    I was intrigued by the title, so I read it. The advice I've taken has provided fun times...and great discussions with friends.

  11. Beauty and the Beast, Marie Le Prince De Beaumont
    Free book on the kindle so I read it. And there you have it.

  12. Mennonite in a Little Black Dress: A Memoir of Going Home, Rhoda Janzen
    Hmmm...I found this book depressing. I think some of her tragedy was supposed to be somewhat comedic, but I honestly felt sad for her.

  13. When Cows Fly, Tom Watson
    Free kid book on the Kindle. It's all about being green.

  14. The Guernsy Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: A Novel, Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
    Such a fun book of friendship and how this society came together to survive the awful times of WWII. I loved the character development and to think it was done in the form of LETTERS! I heart snail mail!! :o)

  15. The Pastor's Wife, Jennifer Allen
    CHEESY! Okay - so I can totally relate to some of the feelings described in this book since my dad is a pastor. However, it's like the cheesy christianese type stuff. As if life were wrapped in pretty paper and finished off with a perfect bow. Whatever - it's a book. I'll let it go.

  16. Spaces and Places: Designing Classrooms for Literacy, Debbie Diller
    I got to work alongside Debbie for a day earlier in the year. It was fun to go through her book and think through things in my classroom. By the way, I think I already have mad organization skills in a classroom setting, so some of it was like - DUH! But it's a great teacher resource if you need it!!

  17. Tiger, Tiger: A Memoir, Margaux Fragaso
    Not going to lie - it was very DIFFICULT for me to get through this book. It is soooo WRONG! It makes me cringe/sickens me/disturbs me...and it makes me want to take someone out! Unfortunately, it is the truth some children are faced with. I wonder if we're willing to see it in order to protect them.
    "One thing I've learned through my writing is that because my grandparents didn't openly deal with the sexual assaults of my mom and aunt as children, the trauma was passed down unchecked. My mother had no idea how to recognize trouble, or to shield me from it. But insisting on silence and forgetting, my grandparents were probably trying to protect their daughters from more harm, but my own story is proof that they were tragically mistaken."

  18. Relentless Hope: Extracting the Precious from the Worthless, Beth Guckenburger
    One of my friends said that it was a book of one sad story after the other. Really - what it is, is finding hope where you think there is none. How God takes the beauty from the ashes. How when you think life is most hopeless - and it can be very dark time - you don't give up. God, Emmanuel, is with us!

  19. Castaway Kid: One Man's Search for Hope and a Home, R. B. Mitchell
    I cried. Laughed. Hurt. Became angry...He not only has an incredibly story of redemption, but an amazing ability to tell it. This book goes on my favorites list. If you want to work with children who have lost their parents or are forced to live without their parents, I suggest you read this book. This gives you perspective on their behavior/emotions and while you read it you pray with all your heart that you would be someone who makes a difference in this child's life.
    "...even at age seven I could see that kids preferred poverty if they were loved, rags if they were cared for, and homelessness if someone wanted them. We were willing to suffer much if w could only be part of our own families."

  20. Unbroken: A WWII Story of Survival, Resilience & Redemption, Laura Hillenbrand
    One word: FASCINATING!!! Seriously. Seriously, fascinating.

  21. Radical: Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream, David Platt
    I read a similar book last year called the HOLE IN OUR GOSPEL. It is a reminder not miss what is radical about our faith and replace it with what is comfortable. To never settle for a Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves.
    It's a challenge to live a life of significance! Sign me up!!

  22. The Magician's Nephew, C.S. Lewis
    In all honesty, I'd forgotten the significance of the first book in the Chronicles of Narnia Series. It was fun to read about how Narnia and the magical wardrobe came to be. I love that from the beginning Aslan says: "Do not be cast down. Evil will come of that evil, but it is still a long way off, and I will see to it that the worst falls upon myself."