Here are books I’ll be reading in April and brief reviews of the books I finished in March. Every 4th Tuesday we share our reading lists at 5 Minutes for Books.
If you’ve ever had spiritual doubts, you’ll relate to Michelle. She’s as honest and vulnerable about her faith (and lack thereof) in her book as she is on her blog (which I’ve read for years; I consider Michelle a friend). I’m enjoying this review copy and look forward to sharing more of it with you when the book is released, April 15.
Not only can we learn how to have better faith by looking at those who did, but also by looking at those who didn’t. Ed Cyzewski is one of my favorite authors (and another blogging friend who I love to read), so I’m excited to be reading this newly-released book with Derek Cooper on the “unfollowers” in the Bible.
The Shack Revisited
There Is More Going on Here than You Ever Dared to Dream
by C. Baxter Kruger
This is the non-fiction follow-up to William P. Young’s fiction book, The Shack. Kruger, a friend of Young’s who endorses this book, elaborates here on the relationship and theology of the trinity to expound on questions raised in the novel and to explore more fully our own relationship with the trinity.
The War of Art
Break through the Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles
by Steven Pressfield
I’ve heard online for awhile to read this book, read this book. So I’m finally reading this book (originally published in 2002). It’s about how to defeat Resistance against whatever endeavors you undertake. It’s one of those small artsy books with lots of white space on each page, so I’m enjoying it for its look and feel as much as for its the words.
My Man Jeeves
by P. G. Wodehouse
I chose this for the “20th Century Classic” category of the Back to the Classic Challenge. It’s very British and very delightful so far. I didn’t realize it’s a series of short stories about the main characters rather than one long story, but just as well. It’s my first book written by Wodehouse but maybe it won’t be my last. I got it free online so I’ll recommend it also to Jeff (who now has his own Kindle—I didn’t see that coming!).
by G. K. Chesterton
Whew. This one is a little tougher. I don’t always follow (or stay interested) in some parts, but then Chesterton will zing me with some profound spiritual insight to keep me reading. I’m in too deep to turn around now, 3/4 finished, so I’ll keep mining for gold until I’m done. Chesterton is an author I’ve always wanted to read so he’s a perfect fit for the “A Classic by an Author You Haven’t Read” category of the book challenge.
FINISHED FROM FEBRUARY’S NIGHTSTAND
Coming soon, this book by another blogging friend and very good writer is one that will make you think twice not only about your spiritual life, but also about how the things you hear in the press can affect (or reveal) your spiritual life. The book contains 3 fiction stories plus lots of links to related real-life happenings. Look for it on Amazon on April 7. My full review coming then.
The Secret Lives of Everyday Things
by John C. Ryan
Early on this book warns you that reading too much of it at one time can be overwhelming or depressing. Agreed. But in spurts, it’s fascinating to see how many resources it takes to make even “simple” products like a cup of coffee or a pair of shoes. At the end of each section the authors offer tips to help control our consumerism. And it’s not always what you think. For example,
“Using a low-flow showerhead is a good way to save water, but eating less beef—thereby saving the water used to grow cattle feed—would cut deepest of all into the 375 gallons of water consumed per person per day in the United States. Nationwide, farms use about three times as much water for irrigation as homes use for all purposes.”
The Scarlet Pimpernel
by Emmuska Orczy
I recommend this classic for a fun read. Originally published in 1905, it’s set even further back in the late 1700s of the French Revolution. It was a little hard to follow at first as I tried to get the characters in place, but after the first few chapters, it flows very easily and quickly. The Scarlet Pimpernel is a mysterious figure introduced early in the book as a Robin Hood in reverse: he rescues the aristocrats from the guillotine from the hands of the newly-in-charge masses in France. I found I didn’t necessarily side with the people I thought I would at the beginning, the mark of a skilled author. This is my pick for the “Classic about War” category of the Back to the Classic Challenge.
“‘I am only conscious of one hope, citoyen.’ ‘And that is?’ ‘That Satan, your master, will have need of you elsewhere, before the sun rises to-day.’ ‘You flatter me, citoyenne.'”
The Explicit Gospel
by Matthew Chandler
This is what you’d think: a book about the importance and beauty of pure gospel. Chandler wrote it after being unpleasantly surprised that even people who’d been in church their whole lives couldn’t necessarily articulate what the gospel is.
The Power of Now
by Eckhart Tolle
This will probably make my “Favorite Books Read in 2014” list at the end of the year, which is a little odd because there were some parts I didn’t like at all. But what I did like, I liked very much, mainly Tolle’s emphasis on focusing most (but not all) of our attention in the present moment.
What Happens When You Discover the Powerful Secrets of a God-Breathed Life
by Chris Hodges
A healthy mix of scripture, modern testimonies, and personal experiences rounds out this book on the work of the Holy Spirit by Chris Hodges of Church of the Highlands. It doesn’t contain anything mind-shatteringly new, but it is a refreshing reminder to be aware of what the Holy Spirit is about and longs to do in each of our lives.
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What’s a good book you are reading or want to read this month? Please share here.
- What? No plan?
- I got hugged by Papa