Friday, May 11, 2007

...summer reading...

So I am deciding on the books that I want to read this summer as I play lifeguard by the pool. Hopefully the writing will inspire me, make me smile, make me think and maybe nudge me to my knees a few times. Here are my picks. If you want to, join in and leave yours too.

Quaker Summer by Lisa Samson- I have started reading this one on a recommendation from another blog. Here is the description for this book:

Every year I think there must be more to life, and every year, despite a new car or a trip to a new land, new milestones and triumphs in my son's life, or a redone deck, a pool, a spa, or entertainment system, I take stock and think once again, I was made for more than this. But I love my stuff.

Heather Curridge is coming unhinged. And people are starting to notice. What's wrong with a woman who has everything--a mansion on a lake, a loving son, a heart-surgeon husband, and soapstone countertops--yet still feels miserable inside?

Yet when Heather spends the summer with two ancient Quaker sisters and a crusty nun in a downtown homeless shelter, she suddenly finds herself at a crossroads.

Sometimes you have to go a little bit crazy to find the life you were meant to live.

I am VERY slow going through this one, which is strange, because its a novel. Its not that its boring but I haven't sat down for a long stint and the book hasn't sucked me in emotionally like say a Karen Kingsbury novel.

But I am thinking and thinking is good.

I just read this:

"...normally read fast-paced mysteries and suspense, and quick reads in magazines and online. Quaker Summer by Lisa Samson wouldn't let me do that. The pacing of the book, which was perfect, slowed me down, forced me to think. The characters and setting are so vivid, so real, and the story so poignant, this book will stay with me a long time."

...and am glad cause it means I am not just losing my brain cells at an ever quickening rate!

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis - This is one I have wanted to read for a while. It is simple and yet there is so much I want to understand in it that I am reading along at a snails pace. Maybe I should take notes - like on this blog - hey!!?? there's an idea.

90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper - Ever wanted to know what Heaven was like? This author was pronounced dead for 90 minutes and went to Heaven. Meanwhile a stranger on began to pray for this dead man and he came back to life and to this Earth. I have a lot of friends and loved ones that have recently gone and a friend said they were really encouraged after reading this book. That and the cool title helped it make my "must read" list.

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver - What a totally cool title. It intrigues me greatly. From the reviews I read its about Missionaries that head to the Congo with all they think they need and find out what they really need. Isn't that just how we all are...all the things, ideas etc. we really need - how much of that gets in the way of what God wants to do?

A Tale of Three Kings by Gene Edwards - I bought a new copy of this a while ago and though I have read my favourite snippets again I want to read this one from beginning to end.

Yada Yada Prayer Group Gets Rolling by Neta Jasckson - YIPEE - the Yada Yadas are my favourite novels. Don't let the bright covers fool you - they are FAR from chick lit. Seriously, if you haven't read any of these books get thee to a store or a library AS SOON AS YOU FINISH READING MY BLOG!! This is a brief description of what cannot be encapsulated in a li'l ol' nutshell of a blog:

What do an ex-con, a former addict, a real estate broker, a college student, and a married mother of two have in common? Nothing, or so I thought. Who would have imagined that God would make a group as mismatched as ours the closet of friends? I almost didn't even go to the Chicago Women's Conference -- after all, being thrown together with five hundred strangers wasn't exactly my "comfort zone." But I would be rooming with my boss, Avis, and I hoped that maybe I might make a friend or two. When Avis and I were assigned to a prayer group of twelve women at the conference, I wasn't sure what to think. There was Flo, an outspoken ex-drug addict; Ruth, a Messianic Jew who could smother-mother you to death; and Yo-Yo, an ex-con who wasn't even a Christian! Not to mention women from Jamaica, Honduras, South Africa -- practically a mini-United Nations. We certainly didn't have much in common. But something happened that weekend to make us realize we had to hang together. So "the Yada Yada Prayer Group" decided to keep praying for each other via e-mail. That worked for a while, but our personal struggles and requests soon got too intense for cyberspace, so we decided to meet together every other Sunday night. Talk about a rock tumbler!--knocking off each other's rough edges, learning to laugh and cry along the way. But when I faced the biggest crisis of my life, God used my newfound girlfriends to help teach me -- Jodi Baxter, longtime Christian "good girl" -- what it means to be just a sinner saved by grace.

Every book deals with an aspect of the women's lives. You will come to love each quirky character for their real-ness. You will wish you were a part of Yada Yada. This one book deals with facing really painful situations, letting go, growing up. God is prodding them on. As the father Denny tells his daughter, “Sometimes God knocks the props out from under us to help us grow up. Life goes on. We have to keep rolling.”

Ouch and Amen!

And so... I am off to use my Chapters discount card to mail order the books I don't have on this list. In the meantime I'm gonna brew me an un-sweetened ice tea with lime and get ready to READ... please join me, there's plenty of room on the swing!


MyBestInvest said...

EXCELLENT call on The Poisonwood Bible. It's the Wife's favorite book of all time (and she's a big reader) and it's near the top of my list, too.

Barbara Kingsolver is a phenomenal writer. I hope you enjoy it.

Happy reading!

ukrainiac said...

I randomly (?) came across your blog. I read several posts and appreciate your heart!

I'm going to add some books to my reading list...using your suggestions.

Write on!

Esther said...

The Poisonwood Bible is one of my favorite books!! Enjoy ;o)

I love the pic of your child with the chocolate ALL over the place. Hilarious!! I'm sure it was not so hilarious to clean ;o(

Sarah's In the Midst of It said...

I am so glad you mentioned the Yada book--I've never picked it up for exactly what you said; I thought it was chick lit. I'm going to have to check it out! (My mother in law and her five friends pray together weekly and call themselves the Ya-Yas; I wonder if she's read it?)

And I've always wondered about The Poisonwood Bible--I need to check that one out, too!