1. The Shack – William P. Young
I think the fanfare surrounding this book took away some of my enjoyment as it was difficult to read without all those voices influencing my experience. Oh well, what can you do? What I enjoyed about the book, was that in exploring one man’s experience of God following the tragic loss of his daughter, Young provides us with a poignant glimpse into the loving relationship of the Trinity and how that love manifests itself to us in the midst of our suffering. The human longing to connect with God in our sorrow and emptiness is something we can all relate to some degree. Additionally, Young makes an abstract theological construct available to people who would otherwise not engage something as complex as the trinity. The writing itself may not be anything especially amazing, but I think the chord the story strikes in the heart of the reader is what makes this book a success.
2. The Book of the Dun Cow – Walter Wangerin Jr.
I picked this up on the sale rack at the Regent bookstore, and was glad I did. I’ve always enjoyed narratives that portray the battle of good and evil through the eyes of the animal kingdom. Told from the perspective of a rooster’s leadership of a farm yard, Wangerin’s story is a classic example of this struggle. Through a tense sequence of events, the book climaxes in a stunning representation of how sacrifice is the ultimate victory over evil. The only critique is that animal/fantasy genre (right term?) is a bit predictable, but aren’t all classic good vs. evil stories predictable?
3. Same Place, Same Things – Tim Gautreaux
Another book off the sale rack, this one is a collection of short stories that all take place in the southern state of
4. A Discovery of Strangers – Rudy Wiebe
This was definitely my favorite book of the vacation. Based on the events surrounding a British expedition into
5. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
This well-known story was better than I expected. Not only does Golden provide incredible detail of the Geisha-culture in war-era
6. A Thousand Splendid Suns – Khaled Hosseini
From the author of the acclaimed Kite Runner, comes this second novel from Hosseini which presents the lives of two woman in war-torn
7. Into Thin Air – Jon Krakauer
This book recounts the tragic events that took place on
8. A Certain Justice – P.D. James
Nothing like a British crime novel for a change of pace to my vacation reading! While I haven’t read a considerable amount in this genre, I must say that reading my first novel by P.D. James was a very enjoyable experience. Her writing style, especially choice of words, stuck out to me as something a little more significant than what one would usually encounter from mass-produced paperbacks. Accompany that with the usual twists and turns of a mystery novel and the fun task of guessing “who did it?”, and I would definitely read another James novel if the opportunity arose.
9. JPod –
I’d been meaning to read this book for a while, so when I saw it in a
Bonus Book: Rick Steves’ Italy 2008
This was our travel bible while in