First Quarter Reads 2019

I almost feel guilty saying this but I would rather read on my kindle than a physical book. Being an avid reader, I feel like I should be a purist and love reading from actual paper books, but I don’t.  My husband bought me my first kindle when we moved overseas over ten years ago.  I wasn’t too excited about it at the time, but soon embraced it when I found out it was the best way for me to keep a good supply of books coming.   A few years later, I was able to use my library card to check out books digitally which solidified my love for my kindle.

When I travel, my library comes with me.  When I move, my library just slips in my bag.  I can read at night without waking up my husband because of the built in backlight.  I can increase the size of the font when I want to read at lunch time but forgot my reading glasses.  I love being able to switch between books with a click of a button or that I can easily find a highlight even from a book that has been returned to the library.  For me, the kindle has been a blessing.   Who knows if I move back to the states, I might change my mind.  (I do have a list of books that I would love to have physical copy of for my future bookshelf.)

This time of the month, many bloggers put out reviews on the books they have read and liked or read and hated.  This month, I thought I would add in my reviews of books I have enjoyed so far this year-kind of like a quarterly report.  Here are my reviews.


Four Gifts: Seeking Self-Care for Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength by April Yamasaki

This was a great book to start off my year especially a year with so many transitions.  I loved how she sectioned the book into heart, soul, mind and strength and had practical ideas to go with each one.   What stood out to me the most was how we often think of self care as what we do for ourselves but her challenge is that serving others is a form of self care.   Self care is about loving God by loving ourselves and others.  

Learning to Walk in the Dark by Barbara Brown Taylor

This one was a recommendation from reading other bloggers’ reviews.  In her book, Barbara examines darkness-both physical and spiritual.  How do we view it? What are our misconceptions?  Is all darkness evil?  How does God use darkness? Even though I might not have agreed with everything that Barbara wrote, I feel like she did a good job of exploring this topic, and it gave me a lot fo think about it.  It also gave me a different outlook as each morning I step out into the darkness for my morning walk as the sun is slowing coming up.

The Ministry of Ordinary Places by Shannan Martin

This books was both encouraging and challenging.  My husband and I enjoyed talking about the topics in this book on our evening walk as we both read through the pages.  I liked how she talked about the smaller her footprint, the more she felt grounded in God’s kingdom.  I can totally relate as my foot print is a circle that is literally 2 miles in circumference.  The question is how can I best love those around me in this time and this place.   But I appreciated the most her words on obedience and faithfulness even when you don’t see any fruit in what you are doing. 


Thief of Corinth by Tessa Afshar

Tessa Afshar is one of my favorite authors, and I am always quick to buy one of her books.  I wasn’t sure about this one, but the plot quickly engaged me and I had to keep reading.  The story was set in Corinth in the time of Paul’s ministry.  The plot centered around a family whose dad is a thief with the daughter following in his footsteps and helping him.  The story dealt with tough family situations, the power of Christ to save, and doing the right thing even when it is hard.

The Mystic Series by Ted Dekker

I read this series on a recommendation from my husband.  The two book series centers on a girl named Rachel who lives in a secluded community called Eden and is born blind.  When she dreams, she is transported to another time and place, a place where Elyon is worshipped and the Horde is out to eliminate all who worship Him.  Rachel soon finds out that she is the 49th Mystic and must find the 5 seals before it is too late.  The plot goes back and forth between these two worlds.  As she dreams and lives in one world, she is asleep in the other.  

If you read the Circle trilogy, you will enjoy seeing some characters from that series in this story such as the Roush and Thomas Hunter. The plot had many twists and turns but also gave me lots to think about in terms of my spiritual walk and what I believe.  

What books have you enjoyed this month or this year? Do you like paper books or digital books better and why?  I would love to hear about it in the comments.

(Affiliate links are included in this post.)

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