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The Books I’ve Read So Far In 2022 (Only the Good Ones)

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“Because every day with a book is slightly better than one without, and I wish you nothing but the happiest of days.” – Jenny Colgan; The Bookshop on the Corner

I wholeheartedly agree with one of my favorite fiction authors, Jenny Colgan, that days with books are slightly better than those without. 

As a book-lover, I thought it would be fun to take a break from our blog series – An Introduction to Christian Spiritual Practices – and share with you what I’ve been reading and enjoying so far this year. 

Most of the books listed below are nonfiction, but if you’re looking for a more extensive reading list, check out my booklist over on my website which houses all of my favorites from a few different genres.

May you find a little bit of happiness in each book you read, and may my list of favorites – and those listed below – help you on your journey to finding a good one. 

A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward An Undivided Life by Parker J. Palmer 

A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life

A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life [Palmer, Parker J.] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life

“The soul is like a wild animal—tough, resilient, savvy, self-sufficient, and yet exceedingly shy. If we want to see a wild animal, the last thing we should do is to go crashing through the woods, shouting for the creature to come out. But if we are willing to walk quietly into the woods and sit silently for an hour or two at the base of a tree, the creature we are waiting for may well emerge, and out of the corner of an eye we will catch a glimpse of the precious wildness we seek.”

This book had been on my list for a while when I finally decided to pick it up, and I am so happy that I did. Parker J. Palmer describes the soul as tender and shy; something that should be handled with great care. Our souls long to be whole, but most of us find ourselves living a divided life. We’ve learned at a very early age to protect our souls by presenting a different version of ourselves in each situation we face, rather than just being our true selves in all circumstances. Palmer seeks to help us live an undivided life – a whole, fulfilling life – by giving us the tools we need to cultivate a safe space and authentic community that will teach us how to listen to the inner Teacher within us all. The more we take notice of the state of our souls and familiarize ourselves with our inner Teacher’s voice, the more whole our lives and souls will become and the more connected to others we feel. 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and was incredibly challenged to relate to myself and others in a more gentle, accepting, and compassionate way. 

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here on Amazon

Carved in Ebony: Lessons From the Black Women Who Shape Us by Jasmine L. Holmes 

Carved in Ebony: Lessons from the Black Women Who Shape Us

Carved in Ebony: Lessons from the Black Women Who Shape Us [Holmes, Jasmine L., Ellis, Karen] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Carved in Ebony: Lessons from the Black Women Who Shape Us

“When I tell you the story of dignified Black womanhood, I do so to combat the opposite narrative, yes, but I also do it to point to the inherent dignity and worth of women, whom God created in his image and for his glory. God’s image carved in ebony… Black women are woven throughout the history of America, and we matter.”

Jasmine L. Holmes takes us on an inspiring, educational, and historical journey through the lives of ten Black women who have helped significantly shape today’s America. Their names are Elizabeth Freeman, Sara Griffith Stanley, Nannie Helen Burroughs, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Amanda Berry Smith, Maria Fearing, Maria Stewart, Lucy Craft Laney, Charlotte Forten Grimké, and Sarah Mapps Douglass. Through her own extensive research, Holmes shares how each of these women throughout America’s history displayed the glory and image of God by fiercely advocating for the oppressed, courageously standing their ground against the inherent injustice in America, humbly educating those who lacked resources and faithfully serving even when they had nothing left to give. I am embarrassed and saddened to admit that I had never heard of any of these brave, brilliant, and humble Black women until I read this book, and I am incredibly grateful to Jasmine L. Holmes for doing the hard and good work of keeping these women’s stories alive for centuries to come. 

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here on Amazon

The Choice: Embrace the Possible by Dr. Edith Eva Eger

The Choice: Embrace the Possible

The Choice: Embrace the Possible [Eger, Dr. Edith Eva] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The Choice: Embrace the Possible

“Here you are! In the sacred present. I can’t heal you—or anyone—but I can celebrate your choice to dismantle the prison in your mind, brick by brick. You can’t change what happened, you can’t change what you did or what was done to you. But you can choose how you live now. My precious, you can choose to be free.”

The Choice is a hauntingly beautiful memoir written by psychologist and holocaust warrior and survivor, Dr. Edith Eva Eger. In her book, she recounts her experience as a 16-year old ballerina and gymnast turned Auschwitz prisoner. She takes us through her struggles and suffering during her imprisonment and how her trauma deeply impacted her years after the war was over. It’s a story of tragedy, loss, and unimaginable grief, but it is also a story of hope, freedom, and continuous healing. Dr. Eger gently and powerfully presents us as readers with a choice to allow the past to imprison us or to allow the past to propel us forward into a wholehearted way of living in the present. I can safely say that this has become one of my favorite reads so far this year and for good reason. 

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here on Amazon

Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art by Madeleine L’Engle

Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art: 9780804189279: L’Engle, Madeleine, Zarr, Sara, Lackey, Lindsay: Books

“The discipline of creation, be it to paint, compose, write, is an effort towards wholeness.”

Walking on Water is a book that you will want to read slowly and savor because it’s packed full of so much beauty and wisdom. This is a great read for any creative who is grappling to find God in their work and in creation in general. L’Engle explores the idea of what it means to be a Christian and an artist and reminds us all that God truly is within all things. She does a beautiful job of connecting the relationship between faith and art and believes that it’s the artist’s job to listen, hold awareness, and then respond to God’s call to create. 

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here on Amazon

Being Home: A Book of Meditations by Gunilla Norris 

Being Home: Discovering the Spiritual in the Everyday

This classic book of meditations is an eloquent celebration of the spirituality of everyday objects and activities. Daily routines such as making the bed, reading the newspaper, sweeping the floor, and cooking supper are illuminated by examining their relationship to the Divine. Beginning with th…

“I want to keep in mind the pine tree by the front door and how it keeps dropping its numberless needles – a tall and humble prayer.”

Gunilla Norris has done something brilliant by taking everyday mundane tasks and turning them each into a powerful spiritual experience. This book was gifted to me by my grandmother, who adored it just as much as I do. Being Home is filled with 70 meditations that invite you to pause and behold God’s presence with you in everything you do such as making your bed, getting dressed in the morning, and even taking out the trash. Norris’ words bring awareness to the presence of God as a way to still your soul and bring peace to your inner life. I read one meditation most nights before bed and it’s the perfect book to turn out the light with. 

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here on Amazon

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley 

The Rose Garden|Paperback

NEW YORK TIMES AND USA TODAY BESTSELLER!”I’ve loved every one of Susanna’s books! She has bedrock research and a butterfly’s delicate touch with characters-sure recipe for historical fiction that sucks you in and won’t let go!”-DIANA GABALDON, #1 New York…

“I would argue ‘tis never the place, but the people one shares it with who are the cause of our happiest memories. That is why we find that having lived them once, we can never recapture them.”

Eva Ward used to spend every summer as a child in an old house owned by her closest family friends on the coast of Cornwall, England. Her happiest memories are of that place and those people, so when her beloved sister dies, Eva feels compelled to travel back to where she remembers feeling truly at home. Shortly after arriving though, she starts hearing unfamiliar voices and finding herself on mysterious hidden pathways that eventually take her back in time to the year 1715. While there, she encounters a corrupt constable keen on revenge, a brave and brash Irishman, and Daniel Butler – an Englishman and handsome rebel not of her time but who will quickly make her question everything. Kearsley’s storytelling kept me captivated until the very end! The Rose Garden is a magical tale of grief, nostalgia, and a love that has the power to span through time and space.  

Does this sound like your next right read? Order it here at Barnes & Noble. 

Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling (Book #6 of The Harry Potter Series)

Harry Potter Paperback Box Set (Books 1-7)

Harry Potter Paperback Box Set (Books 1-7) [J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Harry Potter Paperback Box Set (Books 1-7)

“Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.”

Most people have already read, or at least heard of, the Harry Potter series whether you read the books or watched the movies (the books, in my humble opinion, are much more expansive). This is my second time reading through the series since I was a little girl and I have loved diving back into the magical world that Rowling has brilliantly created. There are seven books total (and eight movies) in the series. In book six, we find the wizarding world slowly slipping into a state of war against Voldemort, a very dark and evil wizard. Harry Potter and his friends are back for their sixth year at Hogwarts where the Headmaster, Albus Dumbledore, employs Harry to help him uncover the life, vulnerabilities, and weaknesses of their common enemy. Meanwhile, Harry finds himself distracted by an old potions textbook that contains written spells and potion hacks from a mysterious character who has branded himself as “The Half-Blood Prince”. Love, heartbreak, magic, mystery, and surprise are just a few things you’ll find when you read book six (and, well, all of the books, really). 

Does this sound like your next right read? Check out the Harry Potter series on Amazon

Next Tuesday

And that is it, my friend, for the books I’ve read so far in 2022 (only the good ones)!

I’ve loved taking a fun break this week from our blog series to talk about books, but I’m ready to jump back into it next Tuesday! We will be unpacking the Christian spiritual practice of breath prayer, and I’m so excited to dive into this one because I use breath prayer every day and I LOVE It.

But, in the meantime, buy/read a new book, and make sure to catch up on the latest posts from the blog series, below:

An Introduction to Christian Spiritual Practices

The Spiritual Practice of Naming

A Beginner’s Guide to Spiritual Direction