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Before we discuss what I’m reading this month, let’s just take a little gander at what is considered to be the most beautiful home library in Texas. Isn’t it something?
Not only is this a place for the owner to keep rare volumes, but it’s also where he showcases documents that are actually signed by historical figures like Christopher Columbus. Man, we know how to do it big in Texas, don’t we?
Although I wouldn’t mind spending some time in front of that fireplace, I’m pretty content with my own favorite reading spot.
I’m betting you could say the same.
It’s Been a Chilly Winter
This has been a uniquely chilly winter all across the USA, and even here in Texas. From the looks of everyone’s Facebook posts, it appears I’m not the only one who has been using these cold months to dig into some great books.
Seems Like Everybody Has a Reading Goal This Year
From bloggers and librarians to celebrities and athletes, everybody seems to have a reading goal this year. I think that’s one very cool thing about social media. In all of about 15 minutes spent perusing our Instagram feeds, any one of us could jot down the names of a whole stack of books recommended by people we know. Or trust. Or admire.
I’m Down for That
I do have some fitness goals for this year. I really do. But they’re the same as last year’s goals. And the year before that, for cryin’ out loud. Oh, they’re worthy, and all, and I’ll keep striving for them till the cows come home. Or till Jesus comes.
But I’d rather be reading.
Maybe if I rewarded myself with a new book for every fitness goal reached (instead of the buttery bread pudding at Bob’s Steak & Chop House), I would be thinner and smarter. Hmm. Why haven’t I thought of this before?
Well, the point here is this. I love to read, I’m inspired by the book lists of other readers, and when it comes to having a lofty reading goal, I’m down for that year after year after year.
Here’s What I’m Reading This Month
I’m sure there’s some kind of weird psychology behind this habit, but whatever. I love to have a whole stack of books, all going at the same time.
It’s typically a mix of topics and genres, and I rotate the stack from top to bottom as I read. Whatever I’m most in the mood for is what I read first, and if I’m super sleepy, it may take me several nights to rotate through my stack.
These are the titles in current pile.
A Great Book About Texas
On a recent visit to Blue Willow Bookshop in Houston, I asked one of the store clerks if she could recommend some books by Texas authors or about Texas in general. She gave me three that she could personally vouch for, after having enjoyed them herself.
I’ve read one of her picks, which was outstanding, and am about a third of the way into this one. It’s the personal story of Roger Hodge, a magazine editor from New York, who spent summers with his family near the Texas border.
The book contains some black and white photos of the places he mentions, but I’ve found myself on a constant Google search for more. Who among us is not fascinated by the lives people live against the far reaches of our rugged Lone Star State?
A Challenging Book About Life
Michael Hyatt is a well-respected influence in the world of leadership mentoring. Everything he publishes is thought-provoking and useful, including this book, which includes instruction on how to develop a detailed life plan. You can read this one fast, or you can read it like I have. Slowly, making lots of yellow highlights.
A Sweet Compilation of Love Stories
What would a book stack be without a good romance or two? This one has been patiently waiting on a shelf since my friend Jana took me to the biggest book sale I’d ever seen. Between us, we bought a whole shopping cart of books. Like a lifetime supply. Well, not that many, but our sacks were mighty full. I still haven’t read all of what I brought home from that sale!
This compilation of three love stories by different Christian authors is starting out with a bang. I’m enjoying it, and have found myself thinking about the mysterious plot well into the day. Will Leiann figure out which of her two suitors is the good guy before the conniving one does too much damage to the family she loves?
A Highly Motivating Bestseller
This title was recommended as a must-read by a blogger I really like. I started reading it on my iPad while on the treadmill as a library check-out, but am now planning to get a hard copy for myself and every member of my family, followed by all the graduates on my list. Man, it’s gooooooooood.
A Theologically Thought-Provoking Classic
Mike and I have always enjoyed listening to John MacArthur, 50-year pastor of Grace Community Church in California. You won’t hear him breaking into song while preaching, like our beloved Randy Phillips at LifeAustin. MacArthur’s messages are typically pretty long, but they’re packed full of strong Bible teaching and doctrine, and his website is an amazing resource for those who like to study the Bible.
I’ve had this book for years and recently decided to read it as part of my morning Bible study routine.
I’m going through it quite slowly, underlining and thinking through each paragraph. If you’re looking for a book that lends itself to some serious examination of the world around us (and your very own heart), you might want to join me in reading The Vanishing Conscience.
An Austin Author Writes a Book Every Woman Should Read
How I came across this title, I’m not altogether sure. Maybe it was because she’s from Austin? I don’t know, but I truly loved it. If Jamie would have written her story when I was raising my daughters, I would have been so grateful. Her words are eye-opening (ok, eye-popping at times), as she candidly shares the destructive thought process of her teenage and young adult years.
Is there a teenage girl in your circle of influence? Read this book. Are you Over Fifty and grapple often regarding the change in our culture’s dating rules? Read this book. Have you wondered if you’re the only one whose sin seems too big for God to forgive? Read.this.book.
I’ll be stewing on this one for a very long time.
*Note: I actually just finished listening to the audible version last night, read by the author. I love hearing writers read their own words, don’t you?
A 5th Grader’s Favorite
You guys may have seen my Facebook posts about reading with my 5th grade granddaughter. I asked her what she was reading not too long ago, and I also asked if I could read it, too. “Grammy doesn’t want to read anything dumb or silly, though, Precious. No aliens, and absolutely no books about kids who are sassy to their parents.”
She had just the book for me, declared my little darlin’, and she certainly did not steer her Gram wrong. The book was called So B. It. Not only was I thrilled that my favorite munchkin had the literary wherewithal to recommend, I was enamored with the story myself. It was a great read and a really good movie, too.
Soof is the sequel to So B. It., which I’ve also been instructed to read. That’s right. My gdaughter handed me her copy and told me to read it. Alrighty then. So be it, said I.
Both of these books by Sarah Weeks would be appropriate for a road trip or a spring break bedtime read-a-thon with your grandkids. But even if you don’t have a grandkid around, delight the child within your own skin with these very well-written stories.
What are you reading?
Do you have a stack, or are you more of a one-at-a-time kind of reader? I’d love to hear. Share in the comments if you have a good recommendation, or if you just want to talk about books with someone who loves them like you do.
Encouraging a lifetime of everyday intentional adventure through the pages between the covers,