So I didn’t read all 17 books on my 2017 reading list. I read lots of other books: new recommendations, book-club picks, and old favorites. I also give myself full permission to quit books, so that kicked a few off the list. And above all, my interests evolved. The woman who wrote that list in December 2016 is not the same woman writing to you now. Her tastes have changed. Her schedule changed. Her family changed. And her heart changed.
The month of October will center on St Thérèse. Email subscribers will receive a digital print from Story of a Soul throughout the month of October. I will post in-depth book reviews of my favorite books on the Little Flower here on the blog. You can read more on Facebook. Even Instagram will get a little sprinkle of roses with a flash sale each Sunday.
St. Thérèse of Lisieux, also known by her religious name, St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face, is one of the most widely-known Saints of the modern era. You might be familiar with the rough outlines of her life and veneration, but how much do you really know about this Saint and her “Little Way”? For an engaging, readable book on St. Thérèse and the essential necessity of trust, I highly recommend Trusting God With St. Thérèse by Connie Rossini.
The last 30 days have been jam-packed for us. We moved, including packing and all that entails. I started an affordable print shop on Etsy. And my son began an FDA nutritional supplement study for autistic children with digestive trouble.
All that doesn’t leave much time for serious reading. This month’s list includes a NYT bestseller, 2 Christian new releases, and a sci-fi thriller. Here are short reviews of books I read in May.
Do you read more than one book at a time? I like to keep a mix of serious and lighthearted, so there’s always something to fit my mood. My husband prefers to focus on one book at a time, so he can see how much progress he’s making. There’s no right way to read.
A couple of readers have asked me for a list of suggestions for their Catholic book club. Choosing a new title for the whole group can be nerve wracking! Especially when it’s your first time leading such an event.
Here are some tried and true favorites for Catholic book clubs. For ease of use, I’ve separated them into three categories by level of difficulty.
In 2014, I was feeling swamped. My son was a high-needs infant, stuck in that gap between wanting to be into everything, and unable to crawl yet. All day long, I felt like I was putting out fires. There was no order. I couldn’t tell you what my priorities were. Just getting through the day alive?
That’s when I joined a small book study online. The group was reading and discussing A Mother’s Rule of Life. From the author and the women in the group, I learned how to prioritize my new life as a mom.
For my first communion, our CCD teacher gave us each a beautiful rosary. She made sure we knew each prayer used. She taught us the history and meaning of the devotion. And for about fifteen years, I never thought about it again.
Until this year when my (very patient, very wise) husband suggested we pray some novenas. I agreed wholeheartedly! The only problem was, while I still remembered the prayers, I didn’t connect to the mysteries at all. They were dry, historical facts to me.
So I did what I always do when faced with a problem. I searched for books. I’ll admit it; the cover of Rosaries Aren’t Just For Teething is what drew me in. My son (and probably yours too) has the same wooden rosary. I immediately got the impression that the book was for young Catholic moms. And I was not disappointed.
Structure of the Book
Edited by Michelle Chronister, this book is a collection of reflections on each and every mystery of the rosary. Each essay is a short personal narrative about the ways each mystery is lived in the life of a normal mom. The essays are written by popular authors including Kelly Mantoan, Amy Garro, Jenna Hines, and Haley Stewart.
My Favorite Takeaways
We all hate to see our children struggle. It’s super tough to trust that suffering has meaning. Even more so when your child has pain that other children don’t. But if there’s one thing Our Lady knows, it’s bearing your child’s pain. She saw her beloved son, God incarnate, suffer more than we will ever see our children suffer. Christ was tortured, humiliated, and killed. At every step, she knew He could perform miracles beyond count; yet He willingly suffered to atone for our sins. His pain was so great, and so was hers in witnessing. If Mary can bear witness to her son’s hardest, most painful work, then so must I.
Why this book?
You aren’t starved for choice when it comes to rosary devotionals. It’s a popular genre with spiritual rosaries, visual rosaries, even sung on CDs set to music. What sets Rosaries Aren’t Just For Teething apart is that it speaks directly to your mother’s heart. Marian love is a mother’s love. The rosary is far from being a dated story, or a dry list of facts. The rosary is the prayer of a Mother, by us mothers.
To help you stay on track with your next novena, I put together a little printable. It’s available along with many others in the Subscriber Resource Library.
Welcome to Quick Lit! Here are short reviews of the books I read over the past 30 days. Only 7 finished books this month, and two were quite short. But I’m so excited about one book, I had to immediately start a Facebook book club to share it with others.
May is the month of Mary, and Mother’s day is right around the corner. Now is the perfect time to start a book on the Blessed Mother. Here are 7 excellent reads about Mary. Check out the other Seven Quick Takes on This Ain’t The Lyceum.