What I’m Reading: Fall 2017

What I'm Reading: Fall Edition

This fall, I thought it’d be fun to share where I found each book on my reading list. I bet you have your own favorite spot to hunt for good reads. I’ve categorized these titles with a single word to give you an idea of how they came to me.

New : These books were purchased through Amazon (most often with gift cards) and delivered directly to my mailbox.

Library : These finds were pulled from the shelf ahead of time, and reserved with my name. Super simple and convenient!

Bargain : I found these books either at my local bargain book store (where I have an account with credit from books I’ve donated) or on a $1 table in downtown Napa right outside an antique store.

Gift : These treasures came to me via friends, family, or other book lovers I know.

I discovered from this simple list that I cherish my biggest bargain buys just as much the new releases that made their way to my mailbox in brown smiling boxes. And nothing tops a friend or loved one placing a book in my hands they’ve already read with me in mind.

After I read, I sort my books again. I give some a home on my bookshelf, others I pass on, and I usually exchange a few for new titles. As always, I save the very best for you, and offer them right here. I hope you enjoy these as much as I have.



Drinking: A Love Story, by Caroline Knapp (New)

This book dives deep into the topic of alcoholism, but I found it a helpful guide for any addiction.  Caroline unashamedly opens a natural discussion about all the places we look for love.

Let’s Take the Long Way Home, by Gail Caldwell  (New)

I had to read this one next. Gail wrote about her friendship with Caroline following Caroline’s death. This memoir is first about friendship, then about grief, but at its deepest core, this story is about continuing to live. My favorite quote is: “Grief is what tells you who you are alone.”

All is Grace, by Brennan Manning (Library)

At age 77, Brennan Manning shares a timely message in his moving, and honestly raw memoir. His message has remained “unchanged for more than fifty years.” And it is simply this: “God loves you unconditionally, as you are and not as you should be, because nobody is as they should be.”

The Invisible Wall, by Harry Bernstein (Bargain)

This memoir explores the longtime tension between Christian and Jew. Harry Bernstein learned at too early an age that some things do not discriminate: poverty, war, abuse, and death. Well into his nineties, Harry recalls on these pages a love story strong enough to tear down any invisible wall. Though he has been writing all his life, this is his first book.



Salt to the Sea, by Rita Sepetys (Gift)

Through the voices of four youths from different nations, Rita Sepetys exposes secrets and hidden histories in moving and charming prose. Their survival of war’s haunting atrocities unities them on every page. This novel confirms the mystery of how hope emerges from darkness and suffering.

The Wonder, by Emma Donoghue  (Amazon)

This tale of twisted theology based on historical fact was such an important reminder that relationship with a living God is not at all the same thing as religion. Emma Donoghue writes about humanity’s willingness to excuse stolen innocence. This fascinating storyline highlights the high cost of doing the right thing.

The Swan House, by Elizabeth Musser (Bargain)

We pass down our history, our legacy, and our hearts every time we tell our stories. The Swan House is about the secrets shame tells us to keep and the truth that sets us free. This book’s soul has made it one of my absolute favorites.

Christian Living

Christian Living

Open, by David Gregory (Gift)

Like a fresh breath of air, this book served as a short, sweet, and necessary reminder that the gospel is completely relevant today.

Jesus Feminist, by Sarah Bessey  (Amazon)

I didn’t even know I was holding my breath until I started reading this book and everything in me exhaled. This one is for the constant questioners and habitual doubters. Sarah Bessey invites us to let the gospel open our eyes to the limitlessness of a God who invites us to be a part of His great adventure.

Awe, by Paul David Tripp (Amazon)

The diagnosis to all that is wrong in the world is awe. Tripp carefully lays out a case for this, explaining our hard-wiring for awe. In our longing, we replace the only thing that can fill us with everything else in our reach. What the world, our cities, our churches, our families, and own very own hearts need is awe of God. Such a profound and convicting read!

Forgotten God, by Francis Chan (Library)

This one has been on my list for a while now, and I’m so glad I finally got to it. Francis Chan argues that God dwells within us on purpose for His purpose, yet how we respond can make a difference in our lives and in the lives around us. This book serves as a wake-up call to the Church to intimately walk with the Holy Spirit, our forgotten God.


I’d love to hear from you…

Do you bargain shop, borrow, or buy brand new? Where did you find the books you’re reading?

What do you do with your books when finished reading? Do you stash on shelves, donate, or regift?

As always, happy reading! Thanks for stopping by.



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