Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Summer Reading List

I am joining the Bright Maidens once again, because I love to talk about books!

Surprisingly, for the amount of free time I've had recently, I haven't been doing a lot of reading. I have managed to make it through a few books, though, and I have a few more on my list for the summer, too. I've tried to mix it up by tackling both spiritual and non-fiction reads with some lighter fiction in between.

Also, be sure to check out my all-time favorite books that I wrote about before! I look forward to reading about what you all have been reading, and I welcome any recommendations you have for me.


State of Wonder by Ann Patchett - I just finished this novel a couple of weeks ago, and I gobbled it up. Ann Patchett is one of my favorite authors, and this is her latest gem. It documents a journey through the Amazon jungles and the development of a pharmaceutical drug that would extend a woman's ability to have children indefinitely (an interesting moral dilemma as well!). The characterization especially is excellent, and so I would really recommend picking up this book. Also check out Bel Canto, one of my all-time favorite books, by Ann Patchett.

The House at Riverton by Kate Morton - I first discovered Kate Morton earlier this year when I found The Forgotten Garden at a used book store. I bought it on a whim, because I enjoy fiction that delves into the history of an era. I loved it, and immediately started searching out her other novels. The one I'm reading now, The House at Riverton, reminds me of the miniseries Downton Abbey, and I am fascinated by the WWI and WWII eras and what life was like. I would really recommend reading a novel by Kate Morton, who is newer on the writing scene but looks like she will have a great career!

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis - I finally read this while I was on retreat. My hope is to check out the rest of the series eventually!

Lying Awake by Mark Salzman - I found this book on the shelf at the retreat house I stayed at this summer. I really found it interesting because it detailed life in a cloistered convent, which may or may not be accurate, but I still found it interesting. It was also insightful for me because this (along with my retreat) was definite confirmation for me that I could never be a cloistered nun (not that I was ever really thinking about it!).

I really would like to read some more fiction this summer - do you have any recommendations for me?


I don't normally read non-fiction, but it's something I've been absorbing a lot lately.

Unplanned by Abby Johnson - I finally was able to read this book when Leila offered to send it to me! I gave a brief mention about my thoughts on it before, but I do recommend that everyone read it!

How to Find Your Soulmate without Losing Your Soul by Jason and Crystalina Evert - Elizabeth gave a great and thorough review of this book and so instead of me echoing all her sentiments, just read her review and then read the book! I will say that I found the later chapters more helpful to me, as a young adult living single while trying to remain open to dating or another vocation, but I did think the earlier chapters provided a lot of good material that I can use in discussions with friends, family, and peers.

Modern Saints by Ann Ball and My Life with the Saints by James Martin, S.J. - I have been really interested in reading about different saints recently, and I recommend both of these collections for reading informative but still interesting biographies about different saints. I also have The Catholic Martyrs of the 20th Century on reserve to read next. Do you recommend any other saint biographies or compilations?

Enjoy your summer reading!


  1. Ahhhhhh I knew you would come up with an awesome list. Now I have to figure out a time to read all of these!

  2. This is a great list! I can't recommend The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene more highly.

  3. Thanks for reading! Julie, I will have to check out that book!

    I just picked up Ella Enchanted again for the umpteenth time... it's still wonderful!


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