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Archive for the ‘books’ Category

To continue on with the lists I’m making out the wazoo this time of year – to the books. Since I’m in Grad school, I don’t get to read a whole lot for fun, but when I get to, I read them voraciously. So, here they are.

1. Divergent and Insurgent by Veronica Roth. Both because they are a part of a trilogy and because I read them so quickly, I can’t always remember where one ended and one began. Still, this book is YA gold. THG left an empty void in my heart this year, and this more than filled it. I can’t wait for the final installment!

2. Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis by Lauren Winner. Dr. Lauren F. Winner is one of my she-roes. I re-read Girl Meets God every year and recommend it as often as I can. She hasn’t had a book out in a few years, so I was excited about reading her again. This is about the aftermath of her divorce in regards to her faith. It’s a quiet sort of book, but still has the intelligent, profound, poetic wisdom that she always has.

3. Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin. These books are epic. I have taken a long break before settling back into book 4 because of the intensity of book 3. Also, they are books I can’t multi-task read with, so that limits the times I can commit to 1000 page books. If you don’t want to devote to the prolific series, then I highly recommend the HBO show. The books have great character development, though they can drag at times (I guess having 150 characters requires a lot of set up).

4. Columbine by Dave Cullen. A journalistic and detailed account of the Columbine shooting. Interesting and devastating.

5. A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan. This was a book I had to read for my 21st Century class. It is a tricky novel – it jumps around from characters and time and point of view and never really connects in the way that you want it to (oh and one chapter is in Power Point), but Egan pulls it off. Certainly not for everyone, but incredibly fascinating.

6. Along the Watchtower by Constance Squires. Another book from 21st Century lit. This book is snap shots from an army brat coming of age. It’s poetic and full of rebellion, rock n’ roll, and complicated families – like all good books, right?

7. 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess by Jen Hatmaker. Jen is hilarious and honest. This book is her 7 month fast and contemplation about excess. I laughed. I cried. I cringed. And it made me think a lot about what it means to live simply in America.

8. 9 Stories by J. D. Salinger. I adored Catcher in the Rye but hadn’t read many of Salinger’s short stories. What can I say? He’s brilliant.

9. MWF Seeking BFF by Rachel Bertsche. This was a quick read, but informative and thoughtful. Bertsche was hilarious at times commenting on finding friendship like first dates and it definitely touches a note to that strange post-college, professional life, making new friends conundrum.

10. Beloved by Toni Morrison. Another book I read for class (Southern Women’s Writers). A lot of people have said a lot of things about Beloved and Morrison,  and I’ll just add to the chorus. She is a brilliant, brave, and wise woman.

11. Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg. One of the books on writing. Short, easy paragraphs. Full of gems. A must for writers.

12. Why is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling. This book made me want Mindy as a new best friend. She is hilarious. Witty. This book can easily be devoured in an afternoon. The book is like a long conversation with your best friend.

Looking forward to in 2013: Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist, Detergent by Veronica Roth, and reading all of Jane Austen novels.

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