To read a book and surrender to a story is to keep our very humanity alive.
— Helen Fagin
Here are 7 books I recommend from June. See all my recommended books here.
1. Don’t Overthink It
Make Easier Decisions, Stop Second-Guessing, and Bring More Joy to Your Life
by Anne Bogel
I’m an overthinker. And overplanner. While thinking and planning are generally beneficial, you can get too much of a good thing. I appreciate Anne’s practical tips and personal anecdotes of ways to make quicker decisions and move on. I listened to the audiobook (read by her!) but I still want to read the book so I can better apply the content.
2. Because Internet
Understanding the New Rules of Language
by Gretchen McCulloch
The internet is changing how we talk. It’s not only giving us new words for new technologies but it’s influencing the way we use language in general (for example, we’ve repurposed the exclamation mark as more than a sign of excitement; it also now indicates warmth or sincerity). If you’re at all a word person, you’ll likely enjoy this book as much as I did.
Wordslut: A Feminist Guide to Taking Back the English Language
by Amanda Montell
This is a fascinating (and often witty) book about the history of language regarding women: insults about women, women’s speech patterns, metaphors used about women, etc. As such, it contains a lot of language that might be offensive to some, so I won’t give it a full recommendation for all readers. But taken in context, it’s quite informative. “If you want to insult a woman, call her a prostitute. If you want to insult a man, call him a woman.” Ugh.]
3. You’re a Miracle (and a Pain in the A**)
Understanding the Hidden Forces That Make You You
by Mike McHargue (Science Mike)
If you listen to “The Liturgist” podcast or “Ask Science Mike” podcast, you already know and love author Mike McHargue. You’ll love him more if you read this book. Mike (quite the intellectual but approachable genius) is open about his struggles with life and his ongoing progress so that we can make progress and be accepting of ourselves in our struggles, too, both in cognitive and emotional ways. “Acceptance beats shame every time. . . . The feeling of sadness doesn’t break me; it teaches me. I’m learning to trust it.”
4. I’ve Seen the End of You
A Neurosurgeon’s Look at Faith, Doubt, and the Things We Think We Know
by W. Lee Warren
Dr. Warren is a brain surgeon who was fighting to keep his faith in God, despite seeing patients die of incurable brain cancer. His memoir is moving and inspiring in its rawness and honesty. Warren doesn’t tell you to lose all your doubts, but rather to use them to draw closer to God. This book is full of stories that will stick with you long after you finish it.
5. Lies We Believe About God
by William Paul Young
None of can fully know God 100%. He’s too big. But this book helps destroy some of the things we think we know about God that aren’t true about him. Young kept a list of “words you will never hear God say” and turned them into this book, lies such as “I keep a record of wrongs. You are the child I never wanted. You overestimated Jesus.” You don’t have to agree with everything he says to still gain a lot from this book. It was helpful to me.
6. Write Better
A Lifelong Editor on Craft, Art, and Spirituality
by Andrew T. Le Peau
This is a beautifully-written book to encourage the writer in you. Le Peau approaches writing as a spiritual ministry. Regardless of the type of writing you do, Le Peau is sure to encourage you to do it with more skill, clarity, meaning. He offers both practical advice and spiritual motivation.
“What should I write about? We need to ask ourselves, What do I already know? What have I already done or been involved with? What has God already taught me, or where has he already taken me?”
7. In a Dark, Dark Wood
by Ruth Ware
Continuing my tour of Ruth Ware mystery novels, this one centers around Clare’s hen party…and her engagement to Nora’s ex-boyfriend. I continue to appreciate Ware’s storytelling abilities without resorting to violent gore or obscenities or images that will keep me awake at night. Yet they are still full of suspense.
- Me and White Supremacy
Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor
by Layla F. Saad
- Be the Bridge
Pursuing God’s Heart for Racial Reconciliation
by LaTasha Morrison
- Stamped from the Beginning
The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America
by Ibram X. Kendi
- The Color of Compromise
The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism
by Jemar Tisby
- Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race
by Reni Eddo-Lodge
- Holy Envy
Finding God in the Faith of Others
by Barbara Brown Taylor
- All the Missing Girls
by Megan Miranda
What good book are YOU reading this month? Please share in the comments.
For those interested, I posted this last week:
- Recommended Reading on Racial Inequality
To learn more, read more. Here are 24 books I recommend on racial inequality. Then do more.
sharing with Modern Mrs. Darcy
- Freedom’s Sidekick: Mercy
- On the Blog—June 2020