April was a ridiculously productive reading month. I still don’t quite know why. I guess it’s because there were so many books I was excited to read and because I used reading as a reward for getting my work done.
Here’s what I read in April, with a brief description of each.
- So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed (Jon Ronson) – didn’t love it. I felt like this was a book that could have been a magazine article. However, if you are a big Jon Ronson fan, I’m sure you’d enjoy it. I preferred The Psychopath Test and Nonsense: the Power of Not Knowing.
- The Distant Hours (Kate Morton) – This story is set in England and flashes back to the 1930s. Mysterious, but not a mystery, with an unexpected twist at the end. I enjoyed it.
- Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us (Daniel H. Pink) – this is a nonfiction book looking at motivation and our system of rewards in current employment. I read this for class and found it fascinating.
- Rising Strong (Brene Brown) – this is the second book of Brown’s that I read. It is about overcoming adversity. I love her sociologist’s perspective. although I could have done without all the anecdotes. Just give me the data.
- After You (JoJo Moyes) – This is a must-read for anyone who cried through Before You. Although I find the arc a bit too unbelievable, it provided the resolution I needed and I was pleased.
- Four Seasons in Rome: On Twins, Insomnia and the Biggest Funeral in the History of the World (Anthony Doerr) – this was a fun memoir. Doerr reflects on the year he lived in Italy while writing. The funeral refers to the death of the Pope. What I loved best about this was that the book he was supposed to be writing during this year was All the Light We Cannot See, which I loved. A fun, short read.
- The Hole in our Gospel: What Does God Expect of Us (Richard Stearns) – challenging and convicting. Written by the president of World Vision.
- The Kitchen House (Kathleen Grissom) – I absolutely loved this historical fiction novel set in Virginia in 1810. It tells the story of the antebellum South through the eyes of Belle, a slave whose father is the plantation owner, and Lavinia, a white indentured servant on the same plantation.
- Pretty Baby (Mary Kubica) – This was a really interesting suspense novel. I could not put this book down. It tells the story of what happens when a middle aged woman struggling with infertility and depression takes in a homeless girl with a baby. Where it goes…you would never expect.
- The Grownup (Gillian Flynn) – I hated everything about this. It’s a short story and I read it in half an hour. If it had been any longer I would have stopped reading.
- Glory Over Everything: Beyond the Kitchen House (Kathleen Grissom) – this is the sequel to The Kitchen House. I loved it because it provided some resolution to some loose ends in the first book, but since the main characters are male, it didn’t resonate with me as much.
- Garden City: Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human (John Mark Comer) – a great, Christian, grace-filled perspective on keeping the Sabbath.
- Looking for Lovely: Collecting Moments that Matter (Annie F. Downs) – oh, Annie. This book spoke to my heart more than any other book I’ve read this year. My only criticism is that I wish she’d added more Scripture. It’s memoir in every sense.
- The Forgetting Time (Sharon Guskin) – This debut novel tells the story of a single mom whose four-year old son suddenly starts “rememebering” things he never experienced. Unique and captivating.
My Top 3: Drive, The Kitchen House, Looking for Lovely