Monday, January 9, 2012

Book Reviews

While we were in the Phillippines, I had some extra time to catch up on my reading list...which was wonderful! So, here are my thoughts on some of the books I read....

The Millennium Series by Steig Larsson:
 I'd been curious about these books for a while since you see them everywhere! Then I found out they were making American movie versions of them, so I decided to give them a try. I actually read the first one before we left for the Philippines and I'll be honest and say that I hated the book for about the first 100 pages! It was 100 pages of backstory facts that I couldn't understand or keep up with, and it wasn't until the mystery started to unfold that the book got exciting! After that, I was hooked! I am a sucker for a good mystery, suspense thriller and this was a good one. I will say there are lots of violent and graphic sections, so if that is not your thing, then you probably won't like them very much. These books are not for every one...but if you like action, mystery, and a good story, then I highly reccomend them. (Also, I just saw the movie and although it was graphic and awful at moments, they stayed pretty true to the book, which is praiseworthy.) I give them a 9/10.

The Reason For God by Timothy Keller:
This book was recommended to me by my husband. David was given this book a while ago from one of his mentors and it really helped him understand some of the big questions that Christianity faces and he asked me to read it as well. This is a great book that tackles questions like "How can a loving God send someone to hell?," and "Is Christianity really the only true religion?" I enjoyed most of this book. I thought some of his arguments were short and could have been more elaborate, but overall he does a great job at answering questions that the majority of Christians and non-Christians struggle with. I give this book a 7/10.

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers:
I actually bought this book for my mother-in-law last year for Christmas and I hadn't even read it! I always hear girls raving about how great this book is, so I finally got around to reading it. This book is a fictional retelling of the book of Hosea. It's a great narrative using fictional character's to show how God's love can redeem even the most damaged child. It is also a beautiful love story, that displays how a loving marriage between a husband and wife should reflect your personal relationship with God. The whole time I was reading it, I just kept thinking, "Oh this is what a Christian version of a romance novel is like!" 9/10

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd:
I got this book as a joke during a dirty Santa game last Christmas. (Thanks, Amy!) She brought the book as a gift because she said she hated it and she couldn't even finish it because it was so sad. Naturally, I was intrigued. I will have to say that this was my favorite book I read! Kidd is such a beautiful writer and the story is captivating. It's about a young white girl in the south who runs away from her abusive father and ends up living with three black, beekeeping sisters. There are plenty of moments of laughter and tears, but in the end there is nothing but joy. I highly recommend it. 10/10

Next up on my list.... 
Bossypants by Tina Fey
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer 
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling
and I want to re-read Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card because it is just so good.

So, if you happen to have any of those...lend a sista a book!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Remember When...

Remember when it was 2011?
Remember when I got my teaching certification?
Remember when I started subbing?
Remember when David performed at Winterfest?
Remember when we had about a week of snow days?
Remember the shrine circus?
Remember when David released his first CD?
Remember when the Thunder made it to the final four?
Remember when I went on my first cruise for our one year anniversary?
Remember when David and I got to be a part of four really awesome weddings?
Remember creeper cat?
Remember going to the lake?
Remember when I taught special ed. summer school?
Remember our family trip to St. Louis?
Remember when I turned 23?
Remember when we lived and served in the Philippines for three months?
Remember when David turned 24 on 11/11/11?
Remember when we went to Hong Kong?
Remember when we came back to America and got to spend the rest of our year hanging out with so many wonderful friends and family?
I do. And it was amazing.
Here's to another year of memories.