Reading is always a comfort.
If I’m honest, I’m struggling to even focus on reading or watching TV, during this unprecedented time. I suppose it begins with choosing what to read. I’m having a hard time deciding. Perhaps you are too? This is why I thought sharing some recommendations with you may prove resourceful.
Once I do make my selection and settle into a story, I always find great comfort, a welcome escape, or the encouragement and wisdom that my soul is hungering for.
If you have any recommendations for me, I’m all ears–please leave a comment.
I’ve been sharing book recommendations for quite some time–you can also peruse my older “reading” posts here.
Quarantine Recommended Reading
01 / From Lost to Found
I’m a fan of Nicole. Her book, From Lost to Found is a unique gift in that Nicole, is a licensed marriage and family therapist, who not only offers her expertise on emotional health, she also vulnerably takes us along on her personal journey from pain to emotional freedom.
We all face pain, endeavoring to cope in varying ways, only to discover, over time, that the mechanisms we use to numb or mitigate our pain don’t work (my hand is up here). This book is for anyone stuck in a cycle of pain, longing for emotional freedom, or (already) deep in the process of changing patterns and behaviors (like me). With wisdom and practical steps, found in these pages, coupled with God’s ever-present help and grace, you’ll be equipped to begin on the path to freedom. Spoiler alert: Joy and peace are not the destination; they are welcome companions in the process that Nicole, eloquently, writes about.”
And….how pretty is this cover?!
02 / Breathe Again
The title and subtitle alone are compelling for the time that we are living in. Many of us are finding ourselves overwhelmed with anxiety, during this pandemic, and are trying to catch our breath. Life certainly feels like it has fallen apart in varying ways for all of us, it is certainly not how life is supposed to be. So how do we live well in the midst of it all?
Niki shares her journey through loss, grief, and cancer, and how she discovered that life doesn’t have to be pain-free to be full. With sensitivity and without Christianese or stock answers, she invites women to replace the lies they believe about themselves and God with sound biblical teaching and his unwavering promises.
Niki’s humor and encouragement have been good for my soul! I know you’ll feel the same.
03 / Rhythms of Renewal
I’ve recommended this book before, but I believe it is a super helpful resource for the current season we are collectively living in, as so many of us are experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety during this pandemic. Daily Rhythms (although they may look slightly different while we are “Staying Home”) are super helpful while we are “Staying Home.”
The thing is, we create rhythms whether we realize it or not. Many times, we create negative rhythms, unintentionally, and they are not serving us–in fact, they are hindering us. Do you notice any negative rhythms that you find yourself in while “Staying Home?”
04 / Abiding in Christ
I know I’ve talked about this book in the past, as well. It is a book that has changed my life. I’m going to be reading it again, myself, in the coming weeks.
This book taught me that being still and being quiet is actually a very high form of activity–it is when God works in and for us.
If you are struggling with the slow down of life and feeling the need to “do” “achieve” and “accomplish” this book is for you!
It was written in the 1800s!!! And it is actually a devotional so it is simple to read in that you only need to dedicate 10 minutes a day.
Let me know if you decide to read it too!
I’m currently reading this book. I am a firm believer that books find us at just the right time. Sometimes I purchase books and don’t actually read them until a year or more later. I don’t see it as a waste. I know I bought it for a reason and usually when I read a book (non-fiction) the timing is impeccable. This particular book was given to me as a gift a few Christmases ago. It’s been on my shelf since.
The Prayer of Protection is based on Psalm 91. A chapter of the Bible that I have loved and studied since I was a teenager. I’ve been talking about it on Instagram in recent weeks and even have a download print available for you– simply click here.
I believe it is a powerful prayer and promise for us in these perilous times. Last week, I remembered that I had this book on my shelf and knew that now was the appointed time ; ). It’s really been building my faith, calming my soul and teaching me how to pray. I love it because Joseph Prince really breaks down the Hebrew and Greek and it is has given me such a further understanding of Psalm 91 and God’s heart to protect his children.
06 / Smoothie Project
This is just fun . . . I’ve followed Weelicious and the Smoothie Project on Catherine’s Instagram for some time and have enjoyed all of her posts.
We’ve bought a good amount of frozen fruit (since fresh may be hard to come by at the time being) and Smoothie Project is giving me the inspiration to break out of my smoothie rut and try new things–and ensure that my kids get fruit and veg.
08 / Happier At Home
I loved Gretchin Rubin’s The Happiness Project. This is one that I’ve had sitting on my shelf, as well, and intended to explore during our “Shelter-In-Place” order.
I love a good mystery. It’s something I can work to solve when my own life feels uncertain. And they bring a sense of closure when the case is cracked or the bad guy ends up in cuffs–it can be quite therapeutic when difficult situations, in our personal lives, don’t give us an expiration date.
The Inspector Gamache Series are delightful because they are not dark. They are not overwhelming–which we don’t need when life is. Penny’s description of food, life, and characters in a small French Canadian village is charming. I don’t often describe mysteries as charming, but these are.
They are a welcome escape.
Have you read any good mysteries, lately?
10 / LA LA LOVELY
Shameless plug here. Not because I’m trying to sell my book, but because I believe it is timely and will prove to be helpful to you. It can be hard to notice beauty and goodness on an average day–but in dark and difficult times it can seem impossible. I promise that beauty and goodness are still here. It’s in your groundhog day. It’s peppered in between homeschooling and working from home. Somewhere … between today and tomorrow goodness is waiting for you to notice it.
Beauty is a cure to pain…an answer to our ache. That has been my experience. I didn’t learn to notice beauty when life was good–I wrestled to see it during dark times. This is my story and I believe you’ll find yourself in it too.
Let me help lead the way.
Fiction Books I’ve Recently Read:
This was a sweet story, set outside of London. A man who has been collecting lost things for years–almost as a penance for a very dear item that he had lost. When he dies, he leaves his assistant his house filled with all of the lost things–under the condition that she help return them to their owners.
Lovely stories of the people that lost their “thing” (some on purpose) seamlessly weaved into the main characters and plot.
02 / The Scent Keeper
I suppose I’m really into the whole “keeper” theme. I didn’t plan it that way, of course. I came across this book from the Hello Sunshine Book Club and the description totally intrigued me. Scent has is such a strong sense. So many times smell takes me to what feels like a lifetime ago–a place, a person, a feeling. Bauermeister has beautiful writing and the fairytale-esque story kept me reading late into the night. I was sad when the book ended.
Now please tell me, what you have read recently or what do you recommend?