More Books! My Own Summer Reading List

I had so much fun making Abby’s summer bingo card that I went ahead and made one for myself, too.  I read all the time, but unless I have a reading list it’s easy for me to get bogged down in the Internet Slough, only to realize it’s been weeks or months since I’ve picked up a book.  So if you feel the same way but need some good ideas to get you started, pick up something from my list and then let me know how you like it!

Reading Bingo

I loved this quote from Melanie Shankle regarding her own summer reading list:

This list will also be the reason I may not blog every day this summer because reading is good and I need to read other people’s words because they never fail to make me think more, write better, and feel like I’ve just had a mini-vacation to a new world.

So there’s no way I was going to blog every day this summer anyway, but the rest of this is totally true.

My list is also divided into five categories, just because it makes me feel balanced and well-rounded.  One asterisk beside the title means I’m currently reading it; two means I’m finished.  Zero asterisks means that someone else has told me a book is good, so don’t blame me if you read it and don’t like it!

Spiritually Enriching:
(By the time I got this list finalized, I realized that three titles are by the same author.  So much for balance!)

*Prayer by Tim Keller– Part I is a little boring, but it gets more practical in Part 2.  I’ve been reading this forever–every time I open it I read something great, but then I don’t pick it back up for a long time.

The Pastor’s Wife by Gloria Furman– this was quite good!  The three section headings give a good summary: “Loving the Chief Shepherd [Jesus]”, “Loving the Under-Shepherd [your husband]”, “Loving the Bride [the church]”

*Taking God at His Word by Kevin DeYoung– A good text on the authority of Scripture

The Good News We Almost Forgot by Kevin DeYoung– meditations based on the Heidelberg Catechism.  (I’ve started this before but would like to read it all the way through this time!)

Don’t Call it a Comeback ed. Kevin DeYoung– technically this is written by lots of people, so I feel a little better!

Beach Reads

Something by Kate Morton– I enjoyed The House at Riverton and want to read more by this author. I’m hoping to find a title at the library.

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion– I keep seeing this title pop up, and I’m intrigued.

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr— Also have heard many rave reviews about this one.

**Something by P.G. Wodehouse– I read Something Fresh earlier this spring and then found a collection of some Jeeves stories at the library. Wodehouse is an easy read, but his prose is extraordinary clever and witty.

Something by Wendell Berry–I’ve never read anything by him, and I feel like I can’t call myself a real reader until I fix that.  Berry fans, any suggestions for a good place to start?


*The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone– A biographical novel of Michelangelo; so far very interesting but super long. I expect to read on it all summer, taking breaks to read other things.

*The Sword in the Stone by T. H. White– Stephen and I are reading this one in the car.  It’s a great story, but a difficult read-aloud.

Beowulf, trans. Seamus Heany– I haven’t picked up this book since Senior English, but I’m told that if I’m ever going to love it, it will be through this translation.

A Man Called Thursday by G.K. Chesterton– I don’t know much about this except that it’s Chesterton, so how could it go wrong?

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskill– Don’t know much about this except that I think it’s Jane Austen-esque and it’s been made into a miniseries.  I might switch this one out if I find another classic that I get more excited about.

YA Novels

Emily of New Moon by L.M. Montgomery– I’ve read this one several times but haven’t picked it up for years.  I think it’s time to revisit it!

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott– I want to like this book so much!  I’m going to try again this summer to get through it.

*Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome– A fun adventure story about four siblings camping on a deserted island near their home.  (It’s just about a bunch of English kids, not birds or wild tribal people, as the title might lead you to believe.)  I’m listening to the audio version, and it’s charming, now that I have finally gotten used to the fact that a character is named Titty.

**The Railway Children by E.Nesbit– A very clever and worthy member of the “Young English Children Having Adventures” genre.  Despite what you will want to assume, this book is not like the Boxcar Children.

**Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter– I give this book a resounding MEH.  I’m not a nature girl myself, and I could not muster up any enthusiasm for the main character and her passion for collecting moth specimens in a swamp.


*Pioneer Girl by Laura Ingalls Wilder– This book doesn’t go in this category, but it was my last blank space and I just got it for my birthday.  It is a fully annotated version of Wilder’s original memoir that became her bestselling fiction series.  You have to love Little House AND historical details, but if that describes you, this book is a TREASURE.

Deconstructing Penguins by Lawrence and Nancy Goldstone– How to talk with kids about books

Love and Logic for Early Childhood by Jim Fay and Charles Fay– Hoping for some enlightenment here…

Give Them Grace by Elyse Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson– Again, looking for some help here!

*The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma– Memoir about a girl and her father’s “Reading Streak,” in which they read aloud together for over 1000 nights in a row.  A promising premise but a disappointing book– I’m not loving it.

2 responses to “More Books! My Own Summer Reading List

  1. Kortney Garrison

    This is a very ambitious list! So happy to hear you are listening to Swallows and Amazons! I think it’s a great parenting/family culture series. I want to be Mother–the best of all natives!

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