December is the perfect time to slow in the midst of the Christmas busyness and reflect on the year that has passed. And what could be more fun to remember than the best books that you have read over the last 12 months?
That’s what we are doing today, my friends! I’m going to share my top five favorite books of 2018, and then we’re going to have a party in the comments. I hope you’ll join us and share the best book (or two or three or ten) that you read this year. Which book inspired you? Which book had you in tears or rolling on the floor laughing? I hope you enjoy this roundup as we all share together and give each other the gift of new ideas of what to read next!
Without further ado, here’s my top five favorite books in 2018 (in no particular order)!
Anonymous: Jesus’ Hidden Years and Yours by Alicia Britt Chole—I loved Chole’s perspective on waiting. So often we want to rush through to the next big thing, like getting through the appetizers and salad so we can enjoy the main course. Using the years of Jesus’ life before his known ministry really got going, the author shares about the importance of our own hidden seasons and how to savor the gifts in those seasons.
Party of One: Truth, Longing and the Subtle Art of Singleness by Joy Beth Smith—I honestly normally avoid books on singleness like the plague. But this book was funny and challenging and lovely. The author doesn’t skip over the hard parts of singleness or elevate one relationship status over another. She also doesn’t let the church off the hook but brings up some serious issues that we all need to address as we open up conversations about singleness and support one another and interact as a body of believers.
Hope was Here by Joan Bauer—This was our summer book club read and I thoroughly enjoyed it! Anyone else read along with us? It has been awhile since I’ve read much young adult fiction but this one had some great themes for all of us to think about- supporting each other, adjusting to a new location, walking with someone who is terminally ill and forgiveness.
The Last Castle: The Epic Story of Love, Loss and American Royalty in the Nation’s Largest Home by Denise Kiernan—I’m a huge fan of any kind of historical biography! This book looks at the history of Biltmore, the huge house on expansive property that George Vanderbilt had constructed in the North Carolina wilderness right around the turn of the twentieth century. It was fascinating to learn about this family and where their fortune (and then loss of fortune) took them during a really interesting time in history.
The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley—On the younger end of a young adult novel, this sweet and stirring story follows a 9-year old girl named Ada who was born with a crippled foot. She and her brother are forced to evacuate London during World War 2 and end up living with a single lady who begrudgingly takes care of them. I was inspired by Ada’s courage, resourcefulness and perseverance. I would love to read this as a Book Club pick at some point!
Your turn! What books did you read in 2018? What were your favorites? Share in the comments and have fun checking out what others have been reading.
In January we’re going to be reading The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile. I’m excited to explore the amazing and diverse ways the Creator has formed each of us! I hope you’ll join in. Here’s a quick summary of the book and our schedule!
The Enneagram is an ancient personality type system that helps us understand both our positive and negative wiring, our fears and motivations, and our pathway for growth. Cron and Stabile explore each of the nine types with lots of stories and examples to help us learn about and appreciate each one. As we understand ourselves in deeper and more meaningful ways, the goal of the authors is to help us grow in our love and understand of the God who created us so uniquely.
Here’s our schedule:
January 8: Chapters 1-2 (Getting started on understanding the Enneagram)
January 15: Chapters 3-5 (Learning about Types 8, 9, and 1)
January 22: Chapters 6-8 (Exploring Types 2, 3 and 4)
January 29: Chapters 9-12 (Understanding Types 5, 6 and 7 and Conclusion)