I doubt I'll finish any more books this year; if I do, I'll add them to the bottom of this post.
Book #115 of 2019 was The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. I really enjoyed this verse novel about Xiomara, her twin Xavier, and the boy, Aman, she's starting to like.
I wanted to tell her that if Aman were a poem
he'd be written slumped across the page,
sharp lines, and a witty punch line
written on a bodega brown paper bag.
His hands, writing gently on our lab reports,
turned into imagery,
his smile the sweetest unclichéd simile.
He is not elegant enough for a sonnet,
too well-thought-out for a free write,
taking too much space in my thoughts
to ever be a haiku.
Book #116 was Opening the Stable Door: An Advent Reader, by Dale and Jonalyn Fincher. I last read this one in 2013.
Book #117 was The Lacuna, by Barbara Kingsolver. I had read it before, ten years ago (here's my review from back then), but this time I read it aloud to my husband. We both enjoyed it immensely.
The Most Fun We Ever Had, by Claire Lombardo. I loved this story of siblings and their parents' marriage. It took me a while to get into it; I didn't like the first few pages at all and almost didn't continue. But I was very glad I didn't give up. I am not sure how she managed it, but Lombardo structured this book so brilliantly. It jumps all around in time and from character to character, but without confusing the reader at all (once you get past the beginning). We see major events through the eyes of each of the daughters, and we see the relationships as living, growing organisms.
Turn My Mourning into Dancing: Finding Hope in Hard Times, by Henri Nouwen. I bought this in January and I've already read it three times (it's short). Highly recommended.
Book #120 was Comfort Ye My People: The Real World Meets Handel's Messiah, 26 Readings for Advent, by Kay Bruner. I've read this a couple of times before during Advent, and it's so good. Each reading includes a link so you can listen to a YouTube video of the section of the music she's referencing.
Book #121 was a Christmas gift from my son, Consider the Birds: A Provocative Guide to the Birds of the Bible, by Debbie Blue. This reminded me of Lauren Winner, and, bingo, Lauren Winner wrote the Foreword. I am a sucker for this kind of midrashy reconsidering of familiar texts. The lovely woodblock illustrations by Blue's husband, Jim Larson, are a bonus.
This was an excellent reading year. Being unable to go out for days at a time makes for prime reading conditions. One thing I especially enjoyed was how many books I read with my husband. We have always read books together, since our dating years, but this year we had a lot of extra time at home together, and this was one really nice result.
Here are links to my previous Reading Update posts.
What did you read this year that you think I should add to my list for next year? Where did you disagree with my opinions? I love to talk about my reading almost as much as I love to read! Talk to me in the comments, here or on Facebook!
6 hours ago