The July Booklist

I’m finding that it’s getting harder to read non-fiction. It doesn’t hold my attention very well, and makes sitting down to read feel like a bit of a chore.
I can lose myself in a fictional world and can (and will!) easily read for hours, but know there are nuggets of gold in other books that are good for my spirit and soul growth. What to do?
Audiobooks. I’ve been listening to non-fiction via audio and it’s a game changer. I can listen while I run, or do the dishes, or drive. I think I retain more this way, and then I can save my sit-down-reading-time to indulge in a beautiful work of fiction.

I thought I had read more this month, but I guess that’s the beauty of keeping track—I’ll have to up my game next month!

So these are the books I read in July:

Circe by Madeline Miller
This was our bookclub pick. Apparently it made some waves and all the important and well-connected Instagram types were raving about it. And if Brene Brown raves, you know the rest of us want to see what the fuss is about. I didn’t quite get what the fuss was about with this one, and the jury was out on this one in bookclub too. Some of us loved it, some (me) not so much. If you like epic sagas and Greek mythology, then this is your jam. I was a little bit lost in the sprawling plot lines and flowery language. My book club associates did, however, help me to see the beauty in it; the heroine who discovers herself and the intelligent thoughts and messages throughout (Magic man-rapists into actual pigs? Nymphs and goddesses… yes, just a healthy sprinkling of feminism). It’s a re-telling of Greek mythology, which is interesting and slightly gripping… but the bulk is spent on an island with a rather naive immortal woman who did not have the depth of character I needed her to have. I did enjoy the immersive aspect of the novel though, there were some beautiful poetic lines in it that I loved.

The Last Arrow: Save Nothing for the Next Life by Erwin McManus
I’ll leave you with my favourite quotes:

“Life is a series of challenges, adventures, and yes, even battles. There will always be giants to subdue and dragons to slay. I have already decided to die with my sword in hand. There is more courage in us than danger ahead of us. You are strong enough for the battles ahead.”

“I do not believe anyone is born average, but I do believe that many of us choose to live a life of mediocrity. I think there are more of us than not who are in danger of disappearing into the abyss of the ordinary. The great tragedy in this, of course, is that there is nothing really ordinary about us. We might not be convinced of this, but our souls already know it’s true, which is why we find ourselves tormented when we choose lives beneath our capacities and callings.”

“Be ready when you get there. Don’t make the mistake of living your life waiting for good things to happen—make good things happen. Be faithful in the small things that do not matter to you as much and treat them with the same level of respect and importance as the big things connected to your hopes and dreams.”

The Way of Life: Experiencing the Culture of Heaven on Earth by Bill Johnson
This was a refreshing look at church culture, at the way of Jesus, and the way it all should/could be.
This was wisdom. So much wisdom.