We're on month five of #100in2013 and I'll be honest, I didn't know if I'd make it this far. By far the most common question I've gotten about this project is "Are you on schedule?" The answer to that is yes, sort of. I scheduled the books out throughout the year because I knew if I didn't, I'd read all the most interesting ones (to me) at the beginning and be bored still toward the end. However, along the way I've realized I might have scheduled myself into a frenzy, so this month I let myself be a little flexible with what I read. A good choice.
Won't Let Go Unless You Bless Me by Andree Seu. She's always been an impressive Christian writer to me. I love the way she thinks and her dry sardonic wit. This is a short book full of her essays and I highly recommend it if you're looking for good writing, memoir or devotional style.
What is the What by Dave Eggers. This is a beast. This book was tough for me. I love Dave Eggers and this book was no exception, but the content (on the Lost Boys of Sudan) is rough. The most poignant part of the book, though, came for me in the purpose of its title. It has stuck with me so strongly this month that I may do a whole post on it at some point, so be looking for that if you're curious.
The Horse and His Boy by CS Lewis. One of my favorite of the Narnia books. Talking horses? Who wouldn't love it.
Surprised by Oxford by Carolyn Weber. I liked this book. It's a fairly big book (nearly 500 pages), but it was a quick read for me. Carolyn tells her story with surprising detail. I couldn't figure out if the book was meant to be a love story or her journey to faith, but by the time I read the last page, I realized it was both—they just happened to be simultaneous journeys.
The Terrible Speed of Mercy: A Spiritual Biography of Flannery O'Connor by Jonathan Rogers. I enjoyed this biography of one of the greatest short story writers of our time. I've known O'Connor's story since college, but this book shed some new light into the life and times of this beloved writer. Flannery's life was not easy, but it was the quintessential "writer's life" and Rogers tells of it well.
Chasing Francis by Ian Morgan Cron. I've had this one on my shelves for a while. I loved Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me by Cron, but I was less inclined to read a novel by him. However, it was good timing that I read this one when I did. Chasing Francis is the story of a man in the middle of a faith crisis who goes to Italy on a spiritual journey in which he discovered St Francis of Assisi. I found myself weeping by the end of this book at the lengths to which God goes to help us see Him fully.
Creature of the Word by Matt Chandler, Josh Patterson, & Eric Geiger. Before I started this one I tweeted, "About to start Creature of the Word; time to see if my pastors told the truth about us." Shore nuff, they did. No church is perfect, and in some ways, a large-multi-site church likes ours might hide her blemishes in the crowd while at the same time be a display of sorts for churches all over the world. In this book, the authors did a great job of showing how when it's all said and done, the Church is built up of individual sinners who are all captivated by and creatures of the word. My heart was freshly encouraged by reading this.
High Tide in Tucson by Barbara Kingsolver. To read Kingsolver is to love her. I've never read anything of hers that I wasn't completely captivated by, and this book is no different. High Tide in Tucson is a compilation of essays by Kingsolver on everything from evolution to traveling to war to memory. I loved it.