Monday Miscellany: What I’m Reading

For this week’s Monday Miscellany, I thought it would be fun to share what I’ve been reading recently, and what I’m planning on reading in the near future. School (and life in general) have been super busy these past few months, so pleasure reading has kind of been pushed to the back burner, but a looming library due date forced me to get back on track. I finished my first book of the year (woot woot!!) and just picked up a few new ones from the library, plus a few Lenten reads (because I’m nothing if not ambitious when it comes to reading). But I know you’re really just interested in the books, and not my overly-optimistic reading list, so here you go!

How Green Was My Valley

I just finished this one, and thoroughly, thoroughly enjoyed it. There’s something magical about diving into a historical work and being transported to a different time and place, to experience life vicariously through the protagonist. This one is a coming of age story that vividly illustrates the effects of the Industrial Revolution on a small Welsh mining town. Llewellyn’s simple prose, written in dialect, not only accurately depicts the way in which the characters would have spoken but also evokes the lyricism of the Welsh language. It was a beautiful book and one I can see myself rereading.

The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

This is a relatively new book (it was published last year), and my interest was piqued when I found out it was about traveling librarians in Kentucky, and even more intrigued that the story also involved blue people. Blue. People. Which is actually a real thing, caused by a blood disorder called methemoglobinemia. Seriously, you should look it up. It’s fascinating. I just read the first few chapters last night, and so far, I like it. It reminds me a bit of Christy by Catherine Marshall.

Who Does He Say You Are?

I’m planning on using this as my Lenten devotional this year, even though it wasn’t actually written for Lent. Each chapter focuses on a different woman from the Gospels, her unique encounter with Christ, and how it transformed her. Meg called it “The best women’s Bible study book I’ve ever encountered,” so the bar is definitely high going in. There are twelve chapters, so I’ll have to read about two chapters per week to finish it by the end of Lent.

I Capture the Castle

This one is a classic and SO MANY people have recommended it or said it’s a favorite of theirs. I’m only a few chapters in, but I already love the narrator, Cassandra Mortmain, a plucky seventeen-year-old who aspires to a career in writing and lives in a ramshackle castle. Castle? I’m already sold! Cassandra’s witty yet down-to-earth reflections on life and her positive outlook despite her family’s dire financial situation are refreshing. I can’t be sure yet, but I have a feeling this one is going to become a favorite.

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Go Bravely

I’ve been wanting to read this book for a while now, and so far, it does not disappoint! Theology–understanding the truth of who God is and who we are–is really important, but it’s sometimes hard to make the jump from knowing those truths to living them out in our day-to-day lives. If you’re a young woman of faith struggling with this, then this book is the practical how-to guide for you. Emily Wilson has such great advice, and offers helpful suggestions for overcoming common obstacles to living a life of holiness. I would definitely recommend this book to all teen girls and young women!

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