Favorites 2020

Most people probably read more books when COVID hit, but I actually read less.  I decided to just quiet my life, . . .

replacing  radio, podcasts,  television and books with  more walks,  board games with family, and meals spent casually around the table.  I decided to listen more and to do that meant to quiet my mind.  Thus, my list of great books to read is out later in the year.  I’ve also decided to include a few other ways to rest and entertain your mind and soul beside just reading.  Hope you enjoy one or several of these options.  Let me know!

The Secret Letter  by Debbie Rix

I love historical fiction and this one about a young girl growing up as World War II happens around her close-knit Bavarian village is captivating.  Magda chooses to not support the Nazi youth and all that is happening around her, bringing danger to herself and family.  Based on a true story, this book shows us not all Germans supported Hitler and how one individual can make a difference in the lives of others.

The Secret of Pembrooke Park  by Julie Klassen

Julie Klassen is a new author to me and I will definitely be reading more of her work.  This book reminded me somewhat of  Jane Austen’s book Pride and Prejudice with the main character  Abigail Foster  similar to Lizzie.  She is the responsible, practical, daughter with no dowry, but this story has many more twists, and mysteries that kept me turning pages.  A  murder, treasure, haunted house, and love story set in the British countryside just as enjoyable, dare I say, better than  a Jane Austen book.

 

How The Light Gets In    by Jolina Petersheim

I thought I had this book all figured out before I even read it, but I was so wrong.  A woman struggling with marriage, motherhood, loss, and starting over.  A typical tragedy story – Nope!  I related a lot to the main character, Ruth, who is juggling the demands of life, kids, and loneliness because of a husband who is seldom there for her.  I have felt everything she was going through, except for one.  This is a book you have to read all the way to the end, including the authors comments after “The End.”  Worth every page turn.

The Bookshop at Water’s End  by Patti Callahan Henry

This is a comforting story about friendships like we all wish we had.  A childhood friend, summer memories spent at a beach town and being there for each other later in life when it starts to fall apart.  A mother who disappears, a teenager struggling with love, buried secrets, lost loves, a marriage and career falling apart. The Bookshop at Water’s End is where it all comes together in this  small town. A bookshop where these adult women once spent  hours in over summer vacations and now touches their lives again.

Once Upon A Flock:  Life with My Soulful Chickens  by Lauren Scheuer

I have chickens on my farm, but I have never really liked them much.  I take care of them because I like to eat their eggs.  But this book helped me to see the life of a chicken in a new way.  Lauren Scheuer brings you into her adventure of raising a small backyard flock of different chicken breeds in a funny, creative, heart-warming story.  I learned a lot about these little creatures, look at them differently now, and enjoyed a story about chickens from a novice chicken gal like me.  Even if you don’t like chickens, you’ll enjoy this quick read.

The Artist Way  by Julia Cameron

If there is one book that changed my life more than any other self-help book, it would be The Artist Way.  It took me a while to get through it because there are exercises to complete at the end of each chapter, but it was so worth it!  Full of amazing incite, quotes, and inspiration to believe in yourself and your God given creative abilities, this book is for everyone.  Why?  Because we all create in our own ways.  Julia Cameron’s book has helped thousands and I know it will encourage your heart in many, many ways.  I am already reading through it again and I hardly ever read a book a second time.

Big Magic:  Creative Living Beyond Fear  by Elizabeth Gilbert

Big Magic was another book I had heard suggested from other creative, artist people as a book  that was a must read.   I loved her refreshing, interesting way to look at life, creating, and living the dreams you have.   Her free spirit will inspire you to, as she says,  “have an affair” with the art you love.  Sneak away to spend time with it even if it’s only 15 minutes because you love it so much.  Many words of wisdom and encouragement for any creative person.

PODCAST:

The Creative Exponent  hosted by Marian Parsons (Miss Mustard Seed) and Shauna West

These two successful, creative ladies are a joy to listen to as they share advice from their own creative business experiences.  Even though the topics don’t always apply to my situation, they are always witty, wise, and practical and help me grow as a creative person.  Lots of advice for anyone interested in starting any creative business.

TV SHOWS:

The ChosenProduced by Dallas Jenkins  (Only on YOUTUBE)

My husband and I LOVED the first season of  this series and can’t wait for the next one.  This is the best television every created about Jesus and his disciples.  From the first miracle, to calling the disciples, healing the sick, and teaching children, Jesus and the disciples are  portrayed in such a real life way you grow to love them all.  Historical fiction based on the bible that will make you think about Jesus in a new way.   Excellent writing and film work that helps us understand what their lives and personalities might have been like.

 

*Feature Image of girl reading a book by:  Joel Muniz

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