Monday, December 25, 2006

The Books of 2006

I read twelve. Ranked in order of how much I liked them.

1. Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper. You can read my review here. Fantastic book.

2. Scandal of the Evangelical Conscience by Ronald Sider. I read this after God's Politics. It was a much easier read, but it got me thinking as much, or more, than GP did. You can read my reaction to Scandal here.

3. God's Politics by Jim Wallace. Wallace seemed long-winded, particularly about the war in Iraq. But, this book was a good jummping off point for me in that it has me thinking much more about fair trade, helping the poor, and the "consistent ethic of life." Read more about the stuff Wallace covers in the book here.

4. Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. This is the last one I read. Just finished it today as a matter of fact. I have to say the first half better than the last. But the entire book was an easy and enjoyable read. I particularly liked chapter 7, in which he talks about the concept of grace. I suppose I liked it because I could relate to it. He could have written that chapter about me and it would've turned out the same. I also liked his discussion of how we treat love like money. A good reminder of the error I often buy into as I attempt to live out the Christian life. Overall, I liked that the author pointed the finger at himself more than anyone else. It reminded me that I am the only one that I have authority over when it comes to how faith is lived out. I also liked this book because it is a great read for Christians as well as those who are interested in Christianity, but are afraid they'd have to become what they hate in order to embrace it.

5. Approval Addiction by Joyce Meyers. This helped me to recognize some things that I needed to change, but I also found it very encouraging.

6. A Separate Peace by John Knowles. I read this book because I needed something to read and I remembered liking it when I read it in the ninth grade. I don't know what made me like it so much then - probably all the teenage angst. It was an easy read and not altogether boring, but I can't say I LOVED it. I don't know why - probably all the teenage angst. (?)

7. Every Man's Battle by Stephen Arterburn and Fred Stoeker. This book was helpful for understanding how mens' minds are influenced by their eyes. It's good to know for anyone who has a husband. As a woman though, I found the information about how to train your eyes and mind very helpful. Some parts of it made me feel uncomfortable, like explanations of what visual stimuli turn men on (they weren't graphic, but you can't help get an image in your mind, and it usually wasn't one I wanted to have there.) One part that made me uncomfortable was a red light, of sorts for me, because it made me realize that I have some beauty issues of my own to deal with. Altoghter, learning as much as I did from this book, which is supposed to be for men, got me interested in reading Every Woman's Battle, which I have now added it to my reading list.

8. Boltzmann's Atom by David Lindley. A bit dry in parts. I did enjoy the glimpse into the human side of science. You can read my ramblings about the book (and faith) here.

9. Six Easy Pieces by Richard Feynman. I liked the first three chapters - learned some interesting things that I'd never understood before. The fourth chapter made absolutely no sense to me. The fifth chapter wasn't much of a help in my understanding of gravitation, though I can't say I was as lost as I was in the previous chapter. I read the last chapter about quantum mechanics because I wanted to finish the book. I nearly quit. QM is hard stuff, so I don't know how anyone could identify it as an "easy piece." I understood the parts I already knew. The stuff I didn't understand before reading, I still didn't understand after reading.

10. Teacher Man by Frank McCourt. Some parts I found completely uninteresting (namely, his sexual exploits.) Some parts were okay. One or two parts were insightful. I found it annoying that none of the conversations recorded in the book contain any quotation marks, a fact which sometimes made it difficult to read. Also annoying were his random jags into daydreams that seemed far too cliche and, well, LONG, frankly. Long past getting the point. I was hoping to be able to relate in some way to this story of a teacher. I didn't.

11. One Size Doesn't Fit all by Gary McIntosh. Easy to read, but with an annoyingly unnecessary narrative. McIntosh tries to give information about how churches of various sizes function, but he does it in story form. GAAAAAH! I read this book because my pastor gave it to everyone on the long range planning committee. The information has been very useful to us, but the entire book is summed up (at the end) in one chart that makes reading the book unnecessary. DOUBLE GAAAAAH!

12. Five Star Families by Carol Kuykendall. My overall impression, (since I have no real recollection of anything of substance that I learned from this book) is that it is full of touchy-feely generalities about raising a family. Lot's of stuff that you read and think "yeah, I know, can you tell me something new?"



Blogger Luisa Perkins said...

Brava! You did it! Do you have the same reading goal for 2007?

Mon Apr 02, 09:50:00 AM  

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