Thursday, December 17, 2009

Top 5 for 2009, and a Giveaway

When I started working on this list, I realized I read entirely too much fiction this year and not enough non-fiction. It was not for lack of having non-fiction on my reading list, just my negligence in picking it to read when I would finish one book and go on to another. I have high hopes of making that situation right. Soon.

5 Little Questions That Reveal the Life God Designed for You by Dannah Gresh — This book was such an encouragement for me. I literally read it over the course of the year. Not necessarily because I wanted to, but because that's the way it worked out. I'd read a section of it, put it down, and then not pick it up for a few months. I just recently finished it, and the ending is the best part.

Dannah always includes journaling assignments at the end of her chapters. I don't do these, although I do think about it. I just am not a journaling girl. Never have been. Wish I was. But it doesn't affect the impact of the book in any way.

All Dannah's books are excellent. She is transparent and honest, and I personally think that's what makes you connect to her books. I can't wait to go back through this one now and make some notes. (It's because I'm a math brain and I never have done well at reading takes me at least twice!)

Right now this book is only $1.99 at CBD. If you click on the title link you will be taken there.

City of the Dead by T.L. Higley — I ended up getting this book as a gift from the author. I happened to mention her business in a post about my obsessive organization. (By the way, it was koolstuff4kids for those fusible beads, and my original post was here if your curiosity gets the best of you.) She sent me this book, the second in her series. I love historical fiction and Christian mysteries, and this sums it all up in one book.

I thought I had this book figured out, and then I didn't quite. I was surprised by some of the history in it. I loved it! I'm going to be receiving the first and third books in the series for Christmas. Yes, I already know some of what I'm getting.

Swan for the Money by Donna Andrews — This is the someteenth book in the Meg Langslow series. It is a secular series, mystery, and one of my favorite. I love her quirky family, the bird theme that always seems to find it's way into the mystery one way or another, and the fact that with rare exception, I can't figure out whodunit until really close to the end — sometimes even when it's being revealed in the story line. I look forward to each new installment.

The Smart Chick Mysteries by Mindy Starns Clark — I re-read these in 2009. I first read them in 2006 or 2007. I read them after I fell in love with Clark's Million Dollar Mysteries five-book series. Both series do need to be read in order.

These books are about an organizational freak, modern-day Heloise who is sweet and charming and trying to figure out her life. Her grandparents who practically raised her have died, her parents who she has nothing in common with and hardly knows have tried to marry her off, and her best friend realizes he is in love with her. And that's just the beginning. Fun series!

I have a tie for the fifth spot between a fiction and non-fiction book. The first is The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner's Dilemma by Trenton Lee Stewart. This is the third installment of the Mysterious Benedict Society. It follows four children, two boys and two girls, all four with different special gifts, as they solve riddles and puzzles on their journey. I still have some concerns about this series since there are times that they don't always listen to the adults, or they are supposed to figure out whether or not they are supposed to listen to the adults, but ultimately the goal is that they must work together or they will fail. If only we could all learn that simple task.

The other book is Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today by Kathi Macias. I received this book as part of a blog tour. It took me a while to get to it, probably because it was non-fiction and that always makes me tend to not pick it up from the pile.

When I first started reading the book I wasn't sure I was going to like it much. It goes through the first mothers of the Bible, (Eve, Sarah, Rachel, Leah, etc.) and tells their stories and then discusses how they must have felt. I just wasn't feeling it. But then the book started covering some more obscure mothers in the Bible and I really started enjoying it much more. Some of them I didn't really remember reading about because they were just tucked in there, but realizing that they were mentioned for a reason, and even more that they were one of the few that were mentioned in the New Testament was eye-opening.

I'm going to give away my copy of Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today. It's been gently read by me, and is hardbound with a dust jacket.

I'm also going to give away a copy of Dannah's book 5 Little Questions That Reveal the Life That God Designed for You. It's a brand new copy of the softcover book.

All you need to do to be eligible to win is to leave a comment on this post by Christmas Eve at a reasonable time of night. Please tell me in your comment what one of your favorite books was that you read this year. That's it. If you don't have a blog, please leave me a way to get in touch with you if you win.

Merry Christmas!

Updated: The giveaway is now closed, but please feel free to leave a comment on your favorite book. I love to get new ideas for things to read!

Congratulations to Rona, the winner of Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today, and to Bobbi, the winner of 5 Little Questions That Reveal the Life That God Designed for You. I'll be getting in touch with you soon for your mailing addresses.


Bobbi said...

What's reasonable on Christmas Eve? Hehehe! All of these sound good...especially the mysteries! Ut oh...another thing in common. HA!

Joy said...

I will have to add the Donna Andrews series to my TBR list.
Have a Very Merry Christmas!

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed reading what you read. I also liked the family photos in your sidebar.

I love to read but have so many books that I don't have enough time in the day to read them. I am sure you must have been that way sometime in your life.

Military. Organization. Been there, done that. I still get up at 5:00 AM every day.

Julie P. said...

Hi Karen, the link to the 'Light of the Savior' Christmas card is right...just scroll down under the report cards...I sent out both this year together! Glad you liked my picture! God bless!

Rona's Home Page said...

'Journey Home' by Yoshiko Uchida - Story takes place during World War II. 12 year old Yuki and her parents have been released from a camp, in Topaz, Utah after getting approval to return to California. Once returning they are faced with prejudice and anti-Japanese violence. Eventually they find new hope and strength in themselves, and Yuki discovers that coming home is a matter of the heart and spirit.

...mmm... said...

You have such sweet kids--blessed indeed. that first book sounds like something I could give away to a few people I know. Thanks for the reviews. Myself, I am the opposite and generally read non fiction with a few fiction books thrown in but even then they are classics like the old Narnia series or something.

Happy christmas to you and yours.

Isn't it funny too how we can't journal, I'm the same there, but yet can blog? I so much prefer the altter where one can add links, etc.

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