December 2023 ReadsOn January 3, 2024 by Pam
….and it is a wrap – I read 154 books this year. I have set a new goal for 2024 of 175 books which is about 3-1/2 books per week. As most people know, I read about 3 books a week – usually on Kindle but, always one on audible so that I can listen to one while I am walking, cooking, sewing, cleaning, etc.
So many people ask me about my favourite books – that is really hard – I know that I have fallen in love with Barbara Kingsolver and that I am so happy to be doing “Books Worth Reading” on our podWcasts in 2024. I have read LOTS of Richard Rohr and I highly recommend his books if you are struggling at all with religion or spirituality. I continue to dive back into Louise Penny and the Inspector Gamache series. I am always a fan of historical fiction. I loved listening to Meryl Streep read “Tom Lake”. Pineapple Street and Mad Honey were both “wins”. I read “Home” by Toni Morrison on January 1, 2023.
One thing I would like to do is try my hand at writing this year…so, I have started the year with Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott. There are books everywhere – start small – read one book a month but, fill your mind with beautiful words.
Becoming Free Indeed: My Story of Disentangling Faith From Fear
Jinger Duggar Vuolo and Corey Williams
Despite her powerfully toxic past, Jinger has discovered freedom, compassion and a brand new way of approaching life and spirituality.
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Made Simple: 10 Strategies for Managing Anxiety, Depression, Anger, Panic and Worry
by Seth J Gillihan
These are practical strategies for finding relief – they are easy to understand and practical.
Glass Houses by Louise Penny
I always love to take a walk through the world of Gamache – intriguing, gripping right to the last page.
The Swedish Art of Aging Exuberantly: Life Wisdom from Someone Who Will (Probably) Die Before You
by Margareta Magnusson
This was brilliant – 86 years old and full of amazing antidotes and advice for living your best life – and gracefully getting through any challenge.
The Heaven and Earth Grocery Story by James McBride
Love and community hold us together and we need each other. This was on the Barack Obama and Oprah reading lists and it is worth the time to absorb and think about how much people on the margins struggle.
The Best Minds: A Story of Friendship, Madness, and the Tragedy of Good Intentions
by Jonathan Rosen
This is the story of Rosen’s childhood friend, Michael Laudor. This book had me scrambling to research this “real life” victim of the circumstances of his time and how the tragedy of real support for mental health still alludes us.
Silent Compassion: Finding God in Contemplation by Richard Rohr
A focus on slowing down, finding solace in silence and listening for your “next best step”. Quiet your mind to listen in silence – this book inspired me to consider meditation as part of my daily habits.
Toxic Relationships: Breathe Again: 5 Steps to Healing and Recovery; Letting Go After Leaving A Narcissistic and Emotionally Abusive Partner to Regain Your Freedom
by Lisanne Murphy
Told in story form, this book is full of compassion and strategies to get you through to the other side – it has lots of ideas beyond the “partner” and focuses on boundaries and building yourself up to be confident and joyful.
Keep Your Friends Close by Lucinda Berry
A crime drama with an ending that will totally surprise you…a fast, fun read.
Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing by Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow (Foreword)
When your heart breaks for someone and when you realize the money does not buy health and happiness and addition is real – everything is in this book. Matthew Perry pours out his heart and makes addiction and its tragedy and traps real.
Behind The Dress: One Woman’s Life in a Religious Cult and the Healing that Came Later
by Christine Faour
What a story! The exact same “cult” as the Duggars – the difference being that she labels it as a cult and tells her story of divorce and her journey to recovering herself and finding a new life – with her children and her birth family and her new husband. This story was very moving.
The Place of Wonder by Barbara O’Neal
This is real story of women finding their way after tragedy and showing respect and grace toward each other.