I know, I know. It’s almost August, and I’m just now posting about March’s literary explorations…
But better late than never, right? 🙂
Spring was incredibly busy — between multiple rounds of company, medications that interfered with my sleep, rapidly changing plans for our future, and an eager new interest in drawing — everything conspired to make me feel (gasp) ambivalent towards books for a while.
Consequently I only completed seven books in March and April, which is probably a record low for me. Four of them were for this year’s literary challenge (#Read2016), one was just because I wanted to cross it off my to-read list, and two were “comfort reads” during the busyness of packing up everything we owned.
Here’s what I explored in March and April (includes affiliate links):
The Making of Star Trek, by Stephen Whitfield
Category: Book published about 50 years ago (first published in 1968)
Okay, I admit it: I’m a bit of a “Trekkie.” I love the logic of Spock, the literal humor of Data, the imaginative new worlds that are created for the show, the sense of honor and adventure upheld by Kirk and Picard, the imperative necessity of the Prime Directive. So when my Dad handed me this book that he had growing up, I was excited to catch a glimpse behind the scenes of the great enterprise, Star Trek. (See what I did there? 😉 ) I wasn’t disappointed. This book not only discussed the chain of events that led to beginning the television series, but also explored the impact that Star Trek had on medical science, astronomy, and even the military. It was pretty fascinating to learn of the interplay between Roddenberry and researchers at NASA or medical doctors, as they imagined how things might look several hundred years in the future — and then consider how to improve the science of their day, based on those theoretical advancements.
Women of the Word, by Jen Wilkin
Category: Christian Living
This book explores the importance of Bible literacy and outlines the major components necessary for profitable study. It combines sound biblical reasoning with practical steps, helpful personal anecdotes, and even humor (ever heard of the Xanax approach to reading Scripture?) to explain the importance of biblical literacy and help anyone learn to study the Bible better. Even someone like me, who’s been in the Word for over thirty years. It’s a resource I highly recommend, and I plan to refer back to it in the future as I develop a more diligent habit of studying God’s Word. Read my full review here.
Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, by Joanna Weaver
Category: book your pastor(‘s wife) recommends
I actually worked through this book together with my pastor’s wife in South Carolina, and we just barely made it to the last chapter before it was time for us to leave. Since I’ve always identified more with Mary than Martha (I’m more of a listener than a doer), I wasn’t sure how much I’d glean from the book — but figured it would at least be a helpful resource for future ministry. Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it spoke to both mindsets and discussed ways both types of people could grow in their devotion to Christ and love toward others. I think perhaps it helped that I was discussing each chapter with someone who identified more with Martha, so we were able to share distinct perspectives with each other, and grow both in our own walk as well as learn to understand others better. I’d recommend it for any woman in ministry!
That Hideous Strength, by C. S. Lewis
Category: fantasy/science fiction novel
I struggled through the previous two books of this trilogy (Out of the Silent Planet and Perelandra) last year, and consequently, kept putting off reading the last one. But my curiosity wouldn’t let me ignore it altogether, so I finally psyched myself up enough to pick up the final book — and I’m glad I did! Although it did include some main characters and ideas from the previous two books, the style and setting were both vastly different and I actually enjoyed this much more than the other two.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, by J. K. Rowling
I finally gave in and read the first of the famous Harry Potter books, mostly just to cross it off the list. It didn’t thrill me… but I didn’t hate it either. It’s very obviously written for young adults, without the depth and development of adult science fiction novels — although perhaps reading it after C.S. Lewis automatically set me up for a disappointment! Harry is your typical teenage protagonist who, though likable, constantly gets into trouble (either purposely or accidentally) for the sake of doing good. Sometimes he gets punished, sometimes he doesn’t. As a Christian, I have a problem with the morals behind that (do you??). True, it’s just a book — but that series (and its movies) are part of what’s shaping the next generation. I don’t plan to read any more in the series, and don’t care to watch the movies either, but at least I can say I’ve finally read one of them.
What have you been reading lately?
PS – Find me on Goodreads to share what you’re reading and follow my progress for #Read2016!