One of the things I have been trying to do more of is read for pleasure. For me, that includes two kinds of books, fiction, and non-fiction. I don’t like a ton of fiction. A book has to grab me from the very beginning in order for me to want to finish it. I’ve also gotten over finishing bad books. If I don’t like it, I just stop and move on to something else. I love memoirs. They’re probably my favorite genre right now. Something feels so powerful to me about reading someone’s story and getting a chance to enter someone else’s world. The memoir is very popular right now, and I’ve read a few that are exceptional.
Here are links to some of my favorites:
Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott
This is one of my favorite all time books. There’s some rough language in it, but it is beautifully written.
The Liars Club, Cherry, and Lit by Mary Karr
Mary Karr is a writer extraordinaire. She tells a story better than just about anybody. You will not be able to put these books down. Her family life was chaotic and unpredictable, and she writes about growing up in a way that is relentlessly honest.
Take This Bread by Sarah Miles
Sarah was a self-avowed atheist until she stumbled into a church one day. Take This Bread is the story of her conversion to Christianity. In some ways, her story is similar to Anne Lamott’s. In other ways, it is uniquely her own. I loved every word of it.
I’m a big Shauna Niequist fan. Her book/cookbook Bread and Wine is one of my favorites. Present Over Perfect tells her story of giving up a mad schedule of doing in exchange for a quiet schedule of being. It’s lovely.
Recently I’ve listened to two audio books, which counts as reading, right? I listen while I’m driving, working around the house, and when I take the dogs for a walk. I definitely plan to do more “reading” this way! Here are the ones I’ve just finished:
Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
Y’all, this book moved me. The author grew up in the poor Rust Belt of Ohio and the book looks at the struggles of America’s white working class. Vance says some important things about the working poor and how we as Americans might address some of the problems. I learned a lot that I didn’t know, wasn’t aware of, or had ignored. His language is rough. Really rough. But you will laugh out loud when he quotes his Mamaw and Papaw, and you will find yourself thankful for the impact they had on his life. This book is currently a New York Times bestseller, and I can see why. Read this book.
Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
I couldn’t get a picture to upload of Commonwealth, but it is one of my favorite piece of fiction. Patchett follows 6 siblings over the course of 50 years, and you will not even believe how she ties intricate details together. I adored this book.
Tell me what you’ve been reading. I’d love to share your suggestions.
*Photo by Jan on Flickr