7 Books I Recommend—June 2021

“Books are a uniquely portable magic.”
– Stephen King

Below are 7 books I recommend from what I finished reading in June. 

[See previously recommended books here]



1. The Making of Biblical Womanhood
How the Subjugation of Women Became Gospel Truth
by Beth Allison Barr


Our pride often tells us *we* understand what the Bible means, not only for today’s audience, but also for its original audience. Including understanding women’s roles. But Beth Allison Barr takes us back through history to show us the path that led us here. Maybe our idea of “biblical womanhood” isn’t so biblical after all? I highly recommend this book. I give it 5 stars.

[My book review here of The Making of Biblical Womanhood]

2. Storyworthy
Engage, Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life through the Power of Storytelling
by Matthew Dicks


This is another 5 star book. Author Matthew Dicks is an award-winning oral storyteller (and an elementary school teacher, a novelist, a wedding DJ, etc.). This book is a fascinating compilation of how Matthew tells true stories from his life to win storytelling competitions. I have zero plans for that. But I I do want to better write and remember my own stories for myself. I picked up lots of great tips here. (I also love the podcast he hosts with his wife Elysha, Speak Up Storytelling, as well as his daily blog.)

How do you remember the stories of your life? Watch Matthew Dicks TED talk here on Homework for Life. He explains how and why he keeps up with his stories. He also explains it in chapter 3 of Storyworthy. I’ve started doing it myself (but not daily).

3. How to Tell Stories to Children
And Everyone Else Too
by Silk Rose West and Joseph Sarosy


Not intentionally, this is a second book I read this month on storytelling. But the focus here is totally different from Matthew Dicks’ Storyworthy. How to Tell Stories to Children is about spontaneously telling fiction stories to entertain and engage children in your life. This doesn’t come naturally to me, so I appreciate the encouragement and advice in this book on ways to improve.

[More notes here on How to Tell Stories to Children]

4. Untamed
by Glennon Doyle


If you like honest and vulnerable memoirs, Glennon Doyle’s books should be on your list. In this one, as in her other books, she explains how she’s choosing to live her life with bravery and authenticity, as a mother, a wife, an activist, a believer, and as just a fellow human being in this world.

5. The Influential Mind
What the Brain Reveals About Our Power to Change Others
by Tali Sharot


Do you wish you could change someone’s mind about an issue you disagree on? Likely we all do. This book authored by a neuroscientist explains why some of our first instinct tactics often fail (such as, just show them the data!) because that’s not how our minds works. Fascinating information here.

6. Divine Echoes
Reconciling Prayer With the Uncontrolling Love of God
by Mark Gregory Karris


How does God actually work in our world? What is the best way to pray to him? What should we ask him for (and not ask for)? Nobody can answer these questions with complete certainty. The author Mark Karris suggests we may be putting too much responsibility on God in our prayers and not enough on ourselves. This book offers interesting insights I hadn’t considered.

7. The Biggest Bluff
How I Learned to Pay Attention, Master Myself, and Win
by Maria Konnikova


Because my One Word this year is Uncertainty, I was drawn to this book. It’s written by a journalist who took a year to become a professional poker player. She wanted to learn how uncertainty, chance, skill, etc., intersect not only in poker, but also in life. Her journey is interesting, even if you’re like me and know absolutely nothing about poker.

Reading Now

  • Think Again
    The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know
    by Adam M. Grant
  • Kent State
    by Deborah Wiles
  • White Awake
    An Honest Look at What It Means to Be White
    by Daniel Hill
  • We Need to Talk
    How to Have Conversations that Matter
    by Celeste Headlee
  • Noise
    A Flaw in Human Judgment
    by Daniel Kahneman
  • Black Buck
    by Mateo Askaripour
  • The Book of Longings
    by Sue Monk Kidd

What good book are YOU reading this month? Please share in the comments.

My books on Goodreads
More books I recommend

sharing with Modern Mrs. Darcy

33 thoughts on “7 Books I Recommend—June 2021

  1. Gretchen

    You had some good reads this month, Lisa! Storyworthy looks particularly interesting.

    My two favorites of the month were Trial and Error by Robert Whitlow and A Peculiar Combination by Ashley Weaver.

    Have a great July!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Thanks for sharing your favorites this month, Gretchen! I’ve not heard of either. It’s always fun to learn of new books that others have enjoyed.

  2. Maryleigh

    After doing classroom and library presentations with my children’s books, I’m intrigued about the book “How to Tell Stories to Children” – because so many parents do not know how to read a book to their child and make it come alive – so many don’t understand interactive reading where the kiddos act out the stories as you read. It would be great to have a book to recommend. Hope you get that photo you want with your family this weekend!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I’d love to watch your presentations, Maryleigh. I’m sure you are superb at it!

      I’m hoping all the grands will be able to make it this weekend. We’re waiting on one of the little one’s cough to go away before we hear the final decision whether or not they’ll be coming up.

  3. Michele Morin

    I will be very interested to get your thoughts on The Book of Longings. I have seen some disappointing preview material, but I love SMK’s writing.
    And I have yet to sample Glennon Doyle’s work. Sounds wonderful!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I’m getting close to the end of The Book of Longings. I’ve really been enjoying it. I also love SMK’s books. I think a key thing for readers to remember is that it is only written as fiction, not truth. 🙂

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I hope Biblical Womanhood lives up to your expectations, Nicole. I hadn’t heard much about it when I first got it. But now I hear about it often. I’ll likely re-read it again in the future.

      1. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

        I’m actually listening to it right now, and I’m finding it very enlightening. I’ve had my eye on it for quite awhile. (I actually requested the ARC a long time ago but was turned down—not surprising since it’s not the type of book I typically review.) This was the first mention I’d seen of it since, so I was happy to see someone’s thoughts on it.

  4. Jean Wise

    Sure love your lists of books. The one on Story fascinates me – I would love to be a better story teller. I will check that one out for sure. Happy weekend, Lisa!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I’m sure you would enjoy Storyworthy as much as I did, Jean. The author Matthew Dicks shares lots of his own stories in the book, as well as prompts to go watch/listen to his stories on YouTube.

  5. Jeanne Takenaka

    Lisa, you have a way of introducing me to the most fascinating books! These all sound interesting, particularly Storyworthy and The Influential Mind. I’m adding these to my TBR lists. 😉

  6. Danielle Hammelef

    I’m going to check out Divine Echoes. I don’t have enough people in my circle to discuss prayer and learning more about my faith journey, so reading books like this one help me think about life from different points of view. Thank you for the recommendation.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Divine Echoes was very helpful to me, so I hope it will be to you, too, Danielle. He presented some unique ideas that I hadn’t heard before, so it’s making me think through some of my previous thoughts on prayer as well.

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