Ah, it’s finally warm! After a long winter, I am looking forward to a slower pace, sunshine, and a chance to catch up on some reading. This is perhaps my favorite column to write every year. It’s the one where I get to share with you all some of the books I have really enjoyed in the last year, in hopes that you might pick up one for your vacation reading. So, in no particular order, here is a list I offer for your reading pleasure.
Penguins and Golden Calves, by Madeleine L’Engle. L’Engle is perhaps best known for her children’s books, including the Newberry winner, A Wrinkle in Time. In this book she explores how a trip to the Antarctic helped her to see ordinary creatures and objects from everyday life as icons—windows that reveal God’s glory to those who will but look. L’Engle’s scientific curiosity is matched by her beautiful prose.
The Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans. Evangelical Christian Evans spent 10 months trying to follow 10 Biblical rules that have governed women’s behavior in both synagogues and some churches (up to and including sleeping in a tent outside during her period) My favorite take away is the lesson that Proverbs 31 (the “good woman, who can find?” text) is meant to be sung every Sabbath by orthodox Jewish men to their wives. It’s not a set of rules to make one a good woman—it’s something in women that is there already, waiting to be called forth and praised!
The House on the Lagoon by Rosaria Ferré. I read this before we went to Puerto Rico—it’s the history of the Island interwoven with the history of a family. Asks good questions about the relationship between reality and perception.
The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. I can’t believe it took me almost 20 years to get around to reading this. A fantastic book, a retelling of the story of Dinah from the book of Genesis. A wonderfully imaginative novel.
River of Darkness by Rennie Airth. A murder mystery set in 1920s England, this novel traces the path of evil in one man’s life, leading to a series of murders. While “justice prevails” at the end, this novel asks a lot of questions about the nature of evil and the consequences that of acions as they reverberate through the generations.
I would love to hear some of your favorite titles—I’m always looking for a good book! Happy reading,