Best Reads From the Summer of 2014

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

One of my favorite things to do that is basically cheap or free is to read. I'll give just about any genre a chance, but I am known to choose my books by the season and the cover.

Discovering new authors is always great and sharing them with my friends is always my next step, so I thought I'd share a little "best of" list with you!

"Women of the Word" by Jen Wilkin * * * * *

Aside from John Piper's book "Don't Waste Your Life", this one is the most influential book that I have ever read. It has CHANGED the way I study the Bible. After reading this book in June I started a study of 1 Peter using the step-by-step methods that Wilkin laid out and it has been one of the richest studies I've ever done in my life. I want everyone I know to read "Women of the Word"!

If you long to know more of God's Word or if you've known that your Bible study time could be richer, get this book. Actually, if you are still alive on this earth, get this book.

I'm serious. It's THAT helpful!

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"Navigating Early" by Clare Vanderpool (YA) * * * *

It was a Wednesday evening and I was filling in at the library with my Mom. Whenever it gets slow, I like to step away from the counter and look around. I look in my favorite areas and then I move on to the other areas that I don't tend to browse when I stop in to get books for myself. "Navigating Early" was on display in the young adult section and it caught my eye.

After reading the jacket I almost put it back thinking it sounded pretty "out there". Then I remembered that I'm an adult and I don't HAVE to finish every book I start. So, I checked it out and I was so glad I did.

This was one of those novels that left me sad to be finished with it. It wasn't action packed. It didn't have a mystery. There was no "love interest" as my brother likes to call that. It was just a story about two boys (one whose name happens to be "Early") who were facing the struggles of growing up and found themselves embracing a very unlikely friendship.

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"Summer of the Gypsy Moths" by Sara Pennypacker (YA) * * *

This was another book that I chose because of the cover and also because of the setting. I grew to love Great Aunt Louise and found the "drama" that the two girls who live with her found themselves having to deal with.

This book is funny and heartwarming and so bizarre that it was just perfect.

The very plot of this book is probably unlike any other book you will ever read. Somehow, Pennypacker makes it work. I'm eager to read more of her stories!

"To Kill A Mockingbird" by Harper Lee * * * * *

It was just time that I read this classic. If you haven't read it yet, I'd invite you to put it on your list for this fall!

I always assumed that this book was about the black man who was wrongfully accused and given a sentence that was not his to bear. It turns out that this book was about so much more than that. I loved following Scout around and getting to really know Boo.

The world has changed so much and yet this book reminded me that some things always stay the same.

"Escape From Mr. Lemoncello's Library" by Chris Grabenstein (YA) * * * *

This was by far the most "entertaining" book from my summer stack. I read it in one day because I had the time and I needed to get to the bottom of the game.

Mr. Lemoncello is like so many quirky old men that we have all known. He is the star of this novel and yet it is Grabenstein's genius that keeps you eager to solve the puzzle for yourself. It's the perfect book for any lazy day.

"One Thing" by Sam Storms   * * * *

This book will feed your soul. It will show you the importance of looking for the glory of God, but it will also define it for you and show you how to keep yourself gazing upon it.

You might devour "One Thing" or you might take it in in chunks like I did. However you read this one, be sure to have a pen ready to mark down the sentences that stop you in your tracks.

What were some books that you enjoyed this summer? 

Are you awaiting the release of anything new by a favorite author? 


  1. So many intriguing reads! Women of the Word and the book by John Piper sound like great reads and I can't wait to check them out. Thanks for the recommendations! :)

    p.s. I still haven't had a chance to dive into Lauren Graham's book. But I haven't forgotten to let you know how it is!

  2. Intrigued by Lemoncello's Library and the Pennypacker book. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Sam Storms is a favorite of my husband and I am loving Women of the Word!

  4. I just started Women of the Word and I agree, I think it will be one of those books that changes my perspective. I was very excited to see that She Reads Truth is talking about the same thing - that's actually how I found your blog!

  5. About time you read 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. Glad you finally read it...and better understand why it is in my top five all-time favs. Actually, it's truly the only book I think is worth being a 'favorite' as far as fiction goes. You know, I have read a lot...and a lot of good books, entertaining books, deep books - whatever...but that book, it stays with you. Instead of Mehmaw or Beata...maybe I'll be Atticus. ;-)


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