books I have read in 2018

One book every 7.93 days. I wish my average was better. My goal is always one book every 7 days — or fewer. Sigh.

Below you’ll find my top ten highlighted:

  1. The Liars’ Club – Mary Karr – Jan.
  2. tiny-beautiful-thingsTiny Beautiful Things: Advice on love and life from Dear Sugar – Cheryl Strayed – Jan. 
  3. Torch – Cheryl Stayed – Jan. 
  4. I Heart My Little A-holes: A bunch of holy-crap moments no one ever told you about parenting – Karen Alpert – Feb.
  5. Everything Happens for a Reason (and other lies I’ve loved) – Kate Bowler – Feb. 
  6. The Love of a Good Woman: Stories – Alice Munro – Feb.
  7. What Is the Bible? – Rob Bell – Mar.
  8. the-story-gridThe Story Grid: What Good Editors Know – Shawn Coyne – Mar. – helped break down the structure of any riveting novel, so you can replicate it for your own! genius!
  9. I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness – Austin Channing Brown – Mar. 
  10. The Good and Beautiful God: Falling in Love with the God Jesus Knows – James Bryan Smith – Mar. 
  11. Wondrous Encounters: Scripture for Lent – Richard Rohr – Mar.
  12. The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business – Patrick Lencioni – Apr.
  13. Long Quiet Highway: Waking Up in America – Natalie Goldberg – Apr.
  14. the-livingThe Living – Annie Dillard – May … amazing … speechless
  15. South and West: from a notebook – Joan Didion – May 
  16. Making All Things New – Henri Nouwen (2nd time reading it) – May
  17. Am I There Yet?: The Loop-de-Loop, Zigzagging Journey to Adulthood – Mari Andrew (May) – lovely illustrations/watercolors, made me smile, gift from one friend, which I in turn bought for two more
  18. litLit – Mary Karr – June – love love love love love…so many bits of wisdom, hard-won…and love the Christian connection
  19. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable – Patrick Lencioni – June
  20. Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – June
  21. the_right_to_writeThe Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life – Julia Cameron – June – ❤️ the practical tips and inspirational essays…made me want to write regularly…makes you fearless and free
  22. theft-by-findingTheft by Finding: 1977-2002, diaries by David Sedaris — lol funny, difficult to put down
  23. Motherhood – Sheila Heti – July – often felt like stream-of-consciousness or lyric prose, and I wondered if I would need to reread it to fully grasp it…definitely articulated some of my doubts about whether to become a mother
  24. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life – Mark Manson – July
  25. if-you-want-to-writeIf You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence, and Spirit – Brenda Ueland – July (minus pp. 59-62 because they were ripped out of the library copy) ❤️ ❤️ ❤️ want to reread and own and devour on a daily basis
  26. The 5-Second Rule – Mel Robbins – July
  27. East of Eden – John Steinbeck – August (finally the right time for me to read this epic book…engrossing family saga that held my attention all through vacation and plane rides)
  28. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead – Sheryl Sandburg – Aug. – seemed somewhat scattered in its structure … oh well
  29. Calypso – David Sedaris – Aug. – funny & sad at the same time
  30. Saying No to Say Yes: Everyday Boundaries and Pastoral Excellence – David C. Olsen and Nancy G. Devor 
  31. One Writer’s Beginnings – Eudora Welty – Aug.
  32. The Wolf Shall Dwell with the Lamb: A Spirituality for Leadership in a Multicultural Community – Eric H.F. Law – Aug.
  33. america's womenAmerica’s Women: 400 Years of Dolls, Drudges, Helpmates, and Heroines – Gail Collins – Sep. – so compulsively readable! took it with me to meals, to the bathroom…juicy facts and tidbits, plus some material for sermons, potentially – worth keeping around!
  34. Goodbye, Vitamin – Rachel Khong – Sep. – warm tale of a woman whose father is losing his memory, and her care for him; real in its frustration and humor and love
  35. American Eclipse: A Nation’s Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World – David Baron – Sep.
  36. Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living – Shauna Niequist – Oct. – first started this with the moms’ Bible study group in the spring and never finished it…but finally picked it back again during lunch at work…and perhaps God sent it to me at just the right time, before the craziness of fall
  37. The Ninth Hour – Alice McDermott – Oct. – fiction about nuns
  38. liturgy-of-the-ordinaryLiturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life – Tish Harrison Warren – Oct. – beautiful, soothing reflections on how our life in Christ is also our everyday life in the 21st century
  39. Advice for Future Corpses * * and those who love them: A Practical Perspective on Death and Dying – Sallie Tisdale – Nov. – humorous, revelatory…made Jordan and me talk about wanting to be buried naturally (no coffin)…also taught me what not to say to a dying person (for instance, if they’re talking about leaving, ask them where they’re going rather than say “you’re not going anywhere”)
  40. From the Corner of the Oval – Beck Dorey-Stein – Nov. – “beach read” fluff book (admittedly—I couldn’t put it down) of a stenographer’s five years working in the Obama White House
  41. Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother – Amy Chua – Nov. 
  42. Death by Meeting: A Leadership Fable about Solving the Most Painful Problem in Business – Patrick Lencioni – Dec.
  43. Daniel Generation: Godly Leadership in an Ungodly Culture – Jolene Cassellius Erlacher – Dec. – wouldn’t have picked it up if it weren’t for my friend having written it, as the subtitle made me pre-judge the book…but I was surprised by its insight
  44. The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time – Arianna Huffington – Dec. – making me savor sleep more and pay more attention to my dreams (which are bizarre!)!
  45. The Great Failure: My Unexpected Path to Truth – Natalie Goldberg – Dec. – read in less than 24 hours; received on Christmas morning; my take-away from the memoir is: people are always a mixture of good and bad, and to think of them as all one or all the other does them (and us) a disservice
  46. two-part inventionTwo-Part Invention: The Story of a Marriage – Madeleine L’Engle – Dec. – so poignant, heartbreaking, and sweet – worth a reread, especially if/when I deal with my own husband’s death someday

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