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  • Writer's pictureLaurel Anne

Books of 2019: Books 41-50

The last 10 books of the year! I remember back in 2017, I read 64 books. I definitely don't have that kind of time or stamina any more! And I really enjoyed the variety of books I read this year, even though some would laugh. Every genre (well, nearly every genre) has something good in it, so I like to keep things pretty spread out! And here's the spread I had for books 41-50 of 2019.

41. Be Strong and Take Heart: 40 Days to a Hope-Filled Life by Ashley Mays

Not only is Ashley an amazing writer and I love her tone in this, she also addressed a lot of topics that I don't always see in devotionals. And I loved that! The daily reading was a little bit longer than a lot of other devos I've read, which I also loved. Definitely a good read, and I want to go through it again with a friend sometime! Overall, 10/10. Would totally recommend.

Also, fun fact: Ashley was my high school mentor! She's one of my favorite people, and she's one of the people who's inspired me most as a writer myself.

42. Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges

Definitely a controversial book, even for believers. It asks you to take a hard look at yourself. I'd be careful when picking up this book though--it was thoughtful, and he made some really good points, but I'm not sure I'd agree with the way he describes some things theologically. I've read a lot from Jerry Bridges in general, and I do usually love him as an author! Overall, I didn't think this book was as impactful as others for me, and I'd say new believers (or even non-Christians) might be confused by some of it. So, 6.5/10.

43. Lord of Chaos by Robert Jordan

This is the sixth book in a 13-book series I'm reading, and I've been working through them for literally at least 4 years. This one was probably a little slower than some of the past ones, but I expected that. There were still some really well-written and impactful parts. But there are so many characters with weird names from different cultures, and it's hard to keep up with all the minor plots! So I did use sparknotes to help me remember a few things I'd forgotten.

I plan to read all 13 books, but obviously, that's going to take me a while. Each book is bigger than the last, and this one was around 1,000 pages. But if you like Brandon Sanderson, you'll like Robert Jordan! I give it a 7/10 and I'd recommend for speculative fiction fans.

44. Nora Petit Rat de l'Opera by Antoon Krings

I mean, it's a children's story about a ballerina mouse. So it was adorable. This book is in French, and is about the extent of my translate-ability. I understood most (but not all) of it. A few things were lost on me, but it's a book sold at the Paris Opera House and my mom picked it up for me when she was there! Cute, weird little story. Not bad, and if I brush up on a few words I'll be able to really translate the whole thing well. So that's fun. I give it a 7/10!

45. Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald S. Whitney

Wow. This book. It challenged me and made me think, examine, and ultimately spurred me towards wanting to love Christ more. The author makes some great points about why we should have spiritual disciplines as believers, not just the attitude of "I'll do it if/when I feel like it." Something I tend to struggle with.

It was written well, the author had so many great biblical points, and it was all scripturally accurate. I would highly recommend this book for every Christian. I'll be buying it for sure! 10/10!

46. The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald

This was not my favorite read, for sure, especially for a children's story. But it was still pretty cute, and I got into it by the end. It did get a little bit boring in some spots but there was also some good humor, and I liked how some of the scenes were written. There's a sequel and I think I want to read it! Which, if you know me, is a good thing. But I don't think I'll read this one again.

Overall, 6.5/10.

47. Sparky! By Jenny Offill & Chris Appelhans

If you're looking for a super cute children's book, this is one of them. Kinda fun, a little funny, and sweet at the end. I love children's books, as you guys know if you've been following me for a while. This one had good illustrations, a good flow for the story, and a bit of a lesson for someone to learn at the end. So that's always a good sign of a winning book for kiddos!

Sparky the sloth is the cutest. So, I've given this book an 8/10.

48. The Furious Longing of God by Brennan Manning

This book was beautiful. It was a birthday gift and I'm so glad I got it, because I'd never heard of Manning before so I wouldn't have really ever found this book.

I love his writing style! He's honest and to the point. He speaks truth in a way that's unmistakable and shares stories not of what he's done right, but where he's messed up big time and how God's Grace is what covers him. So convicting and inspiring to read his humility. It was a truly beautiful devo. 8.5/10, and totally recommend!

49. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

Definitely not my first time reading this one, and not my last. It's always a good read, and I loved going through it at this time of the year. It's a great quick read but it is packed with a lot of beautiful meaning and imagery as well.

I love the larger story the Narnia books tell, using Aslan as a way to point us to Christ. Not only is it a good book for kids, but adults can learn a lot from this series too. Lewis is a great writer and I always recommend books by him! Overall, 8/10.

50. Starsight by Brandon Sanderson

I could not go through this one fast enough! And yet, I wish it took me longer. That's when you know you have a good book. I loved it! It's the sequel to Skyward, and I'd say it's not as good but still pretty great. I felt like it was a little bit political at parts, but I know that's also how he writes sometimes.

He's one of my favorite authors and I've loved 99% of everything I've read from him. This probably makes book 17 from Sanderson that I've read! Phenomenal world building, beautiful characters, great comedic timing, really really good author. I'm giving this book 9/10!

That does it for 2019's book list! Stay tuned for a post coming about this year's books overall. I'll be comparing some of the best, the worst, the repeats, and more!


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