I anticipated a busy March and April, so I scheduled fewer weighty books for these two months. Lesson learned: I should have put fewer books, instead of the same amount of slimmer books. I rearranged April because of this. I just didn't find reading the same amount of books manageable for how busy this month has been (classes, work, and a fairly constant stream of visitors). That said, I still did my best to read thoroughly.
I'm on a bit of a Holocaust trail these days. After a visit to the Holocaust museum and two documentary viewings, I realized that Elie Wiesel's Night was on the list for this month. Score! I don't know how I got through school without reading this slim volume. Wiesel's retelling of his experience at Auschwitz and then Buchenwald was stirring, revolting, and vivid. I look forward to reading his other books as soon as this year is over.
Next up in the land of Narnia was The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, which is historically my second least favorite of the books (don't worry folks, it's all uphill from here =)).
Evangelical Feminism by Wayne Grudem has been my slow and steady read of the month. It wasn't difficult to ingest, but I wanted to ingest it fully, even the most difficult parts. I've always been very interested in feminist readings because I am innately interested in how women are wired and function best. This book is not so much a theology of complementarity, as much as it is a treatise against more liberal arguments. I appreciated very much his thorough and seemingly objective thoughts. I am even more curious now to read some of his opponents, as well as the larger volume he wrote in defense of his position.
I've always wanted to read a PG Wodehouse and now was my chance! How Right You Are, Jeeves made it onto the list for this month and I was absorbed immediately. You can't help reading Wodehouse in a British accent because he writes it so fully like Brit. He's a master of words and I could see how some of my favorite writers (who list him as a favorite author) have slipped some of his style into their own writing. A great gem. I'll be reading more of him. Someday...
Tell Me A Story by Dallas's own Scott McClellan was next up. I only had a few empty spaces to fill this year and I left most of them open to do author reviews for up and coming authors. Scott is a twitter and blog friend, and I've been looking forward to his book for a while. I was not disappointed! In a time when so many tell stories and get published quickly, there are few who tell stories that centralize back to the gospel, and Scott shows this well. If you're a writer, storyteller, speaker, or communicator, I recommend this book for encouragement and instruction.
The winner of March is easily Joe Thorn's Note to Self. There are few books that have affected me like Valley of Vision, a book of puritan prayers, and so it is of no surprise to me that Thorn is also a fan of VoV. Note to Self reads like a modern day VoV, preaching solidly to oneself about issues that affect us all. I want to buy a copy of this book for everyone I know, so if you only purchase one from this list, make it this one. The notes are only one or two pages each, easily read in a few minutes and enough encouragement for the whole day.
But the runner-up for March is easily Rachel Jankovic's Fit to Burst. This is a book about motherhood and I feel the furthest from motherhood as I've ever felt, yet there was nothing in this book that I didn't need right this minute for my own life. Rachel talks about parenting, but does it without once mentioning a method or theory. Instead she simply talks about how God parents us and how we discipline ourselves as believers, and so as parents. I was deeply encouraged, especially for the season of discipleship that I'm in in life.
Thank you to Jennifer Upton, Chris Hartgarten, Alison Luna, & Scott McClellan for this month's books!