Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Reading List

I think I'll make up a reading list. I usually read books in the same way I clean house:  I just pick up something and do it when I feel like it. (Miraculously, the house has not fallen into ruin with this strategy.) I drift from book to book. I don't read many new books from the library. I don't like modern fiction very much. Thus, I tend to read the same favorites over and over again.

Which isn't too bad.

It's rather likely we will be moving house in the next few months, since Adam is looking for a new pastoral situation. And if all my books will be in boxes, I want to make sure I keep out the ones I plan to read. It's a terrible thing to be without reading. So, this reading list will help me keep the right books set aside, for my reading for the foreseeable future.

Lark Rise to Candleford  & Still Glides the Stream   -- (This will be my 3rd time through for each of these, but I want to see how closely the BBC series follows the books.)
The Gifts of the Child Christ -- I haven't read many of these in years. It's time. Just a few.
A Severe Mercy -- Remember when this book was such a fad? I'm curious if it's as good as I recall.
One Jan Karon book -- I don't want to hash my way through the entire Mitford series, but maybe just one.
One MFK Fisher book -- Again, it's been too long. She's one of my favorites. Must pick the right one though. Some of hers go on forever. Probably Last House.
The Country of the Pointed Firs -- Okay, I've read this one many times, but it's hard to resist!
(I will not, I will not, I will not read A Tuscan Childhood again already. I must resist. I have to wait until it's drifted farther from my mind. Sigh.)
I'm debating on On Rue Tatin, Clementine in the Kitchen, and 1000 Days in Tuscany.
I'd like to launch into the Kristin Lavrensdatter series again, but the thought of all three of them is a bit overwhelming.

And as I look at this pitiful list, I realize I'm in a rut. I'm reading the same 15 - 20 books over and over. I need some  new blood on my shelves, so to speak. I've heard many friends mention Elizabeth Goudge.  Do you like her? Which of her books would you recommend? After looking at the list above, can you recommend any other books you think I'd like? I enjoy delicious books -- i.e., books with rich settings and well-fleshed-out characters, in leisurely plots. I prefer books that are biographical/autobiographical, without being pedantic.

All advice is welcome!


  1. I love Elizabeth Goudge. I've found that if I am going through a stressful period her books are always helpful - they convey her confidence that God is with us and offering Himself and His grace through many ordinary means. Her characters always have flaws, but she reveals the struggles going on in each heart so that I end up liking everyone and praising God. I've read three or four of her novels and her memoirs Joy of the Snow. The Dean's Watch was the first one I read and it was incredibly rejuvenative. The Scent of Water was another really lovely book.

  2. Thanks, GJ! That's very helpful. To the library I go!

  3. Have you read Dorothy Dunnett? Her historical fiction is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I literally yelped in my seat reading to try to relieve tension, bc it was so good.

    And my favorite novel is Umberto Eco's Baudolino.

  4. What about Anthony Trollope or D.E. Stevenson? Miss Buncle's book by Stevenson is delightful as are all her books.

  5. I love to dabble in Lark Rise to Candleford. I read The Country of the Pointed Firs a month ago, LOVED it. So, will you move far away?

  6. Many thanks for these great suggestions so far! I'll give them a try! More are welcome!

  7. I like Elizabeth Goudge. The Dean's Watch is good, and I like A City of Bells even better. We are reading The Chronicles of Narnia to the children and I am enjoying them as much as I did the first time I read them, and getting more out of them.


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