Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2014 Books Read Recap, Round 1

  I promised a recap of my favorite books that I read last year. There's going to be several posts, as I was lucky enough to have a lot! These first five I enjoyed a lot. 

A Case For Christ by Lee Strobel
Paris Letters by Janice MacLeod
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens(finally read that one!)
Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card (fantastic)
The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis  (absolutely in love with C. S. Lewis's work!  This was brilliant).

 A Case For Christ
   I had read A Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel a few years before when I found A Case For Christ at a thrift store, and was eager to see what research the author had put into forming an argument for the legitimacy of the Christian faith in Jesus's existence and message. I was fascinated by the different aspects of his research, for example learning about the importance people like the Hebrews put on the conciseness of things that were passed down, that nothing be changed. If they allowed such things, then the purity of that heritage couldn't be depended on. Eventually it would just be a story, not their history. This book I intend to read again!

 Paris Letters
  I have been following Janice MacLeod's blog for a few years now, and I LOVE her photos and updates for how she's succeeding with her Etsy business, her books, and the new people she's been connecting with. It's always fun. Especially learning about her life in Paris! She wrote Paris Letters as a way to share her path to getting to where she is now, to how she had to make sacrifices in the beginning to make a way to have her long 2-year (or was it 1 year?) vacation in Paris, to find new inspiration and find something different in life. This read was a happy, fun roller coaster ride. It was just so fun. This is the type of book to curl up with with a nice latte and just have a good time. It certainly inspires you to find a way to have your own long inspiration-filled vacation.

Great Expectations
  I actually watched the 2011 BBC miniseries of this first, which I just completely fell in love with. It just captured my imagination, and spurred me to finally read the book. The book, while having spots that drag out a bit, was a lovely treat. I laughed a bit at Dickens' tendency to carry on a sentence, as if to put himself through an exercise of how long he could keep it going. But the story plot, the characters--they really stood out. Especially the psychology behind. I just enjoyed it so much!! Looking forward to reading more of Dickens' work. I've already read Oliver Twist, which was fun, but I especially looking forward to A Tale of Two Cities and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. (Another miniseries that I love!!)

Ender's Game
  Whoa. This went to the top favs pretty quick--Card's writing is superb, and the way he portrayed live in the training and the war itself--it was a real action-filled study. Had a lot of truth in it. I watched the movie first (often a prerequisite to a lot of my fav books--I read so randomly that books that end up being a favorite often have a movie made after them. But there are tons of treasures that haven't been adapted that I just hold on pedestals), and almost immediately went and checked out the book. Orson Scott Card's writing is sharp and insightful. It's fueled by imagination but lives on a bedrock of logic. He's on my favorite author list. I was lucky enough to find some of his other works at the thrift store! Obviously I piled them all in my cart.

The Great Divorce
  Whoohoo--I LOVED the symbolism and setting that had me guessing and thinking about the circumstances, characters, and meanings behind this merry-go-round of dream-like realities. It was so thought-provoking. I love stories that really make you see things in different ways, keep you guessing, and then present it in a way that makes you sit back and just think about it. You know truth when you touch it. C. S. Lewis is the author I love reading most when I want to read insightful work on Christian ideas/messages. I never finish dissatisfied. He always writes with experiences, conviction, and intellect. Often enough, when I read something from others, it sounds like the same thing you'd hear in Sunday School. I want something that has been lived.

  Reading is always a journey--that's the great thing about it. Just in reading new things you get new ideas, new ways to see things, and best of all--new awesome authors to follow with the anticipation of a pup awaiting a meaty bone. (Okay, perhaps I could have used a better alliteration, but I've been dealing with my pup, so this image came quickly). ;)

  I'll be sharing more books from 2014 soon!

  E. C. S.