Whole Living Gal

Summer Reading

One thing that is helping me stay balanced and thinking like an adult as I transition into life with two (two babies, at that) is reading. I’m not saying it’s easy to read when you’re a mom, but for me, it is necessary to make time for this. My TV is on a lot less and sometimes I ignore the laundry, but my mind is in a happier place when I’m reading.

Here’s what I’ve been reading this summer:

Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton
This one isn’t quite summer reading – I started it in February. But I finished in the summer, so that’s something. It’s a beautiful read – challenging and interesting. I love to read other people’s stories, and this is Merton’s journey to becoming a monk. It’s well written, and is very insightful into his own heart and spirit.

So Brave, Young, and Handsome by Leif Enger
Of course, I need to read Peace Like a River, but I started with this one first. It’s wonderful! My all-time favorite book is Huckleberry Finn and this book reminded me of that – I even pictured one of the main characters looking just like Mark Twain. I love his descriptions and connection to nature and the human spirit as well as the themes of redemption and love.

The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd
We rented a beach house named “The Mermaid” and it was no surprise to find this book among the other beach reads on the shelf there. I picked it up, excited to read what all the fuss is about with Kidd – I’d never read her before. I got sucked into the story, but about halfway through, I felt she was repetitive in all ways and I started skimming. Honestly, I didn’t even finish the book – just skimmed the end to see what happened. It was grotesque (and not in a good, Southern lit kind of way) and odd and I didn’t appreciate the way she painted the church and faith.

I’m currently about halfway through Eat, Pray, Love – a book I’ve been meaning to read since it came out. And I am loving it. It’s a read I need right now – when I’m grasping to find pleasure and devotion and self in my new rhythm as a mom of two. As an added bonus, Gilbert is a fantastic writer, so there’s that.

I have also discovered the COOKBOOK section of our library! Who knew! I am in love and have a few books sitting on my kitchen table waiting for perusal, including Nigella Lawson’s How to Eat – I love the sensuality she brings to her food, and I’m hoping some of that comes across in her book as well.

What are you reading? Any good suggestions?

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  1. * anne says:

    Yes, actually, but not since we were “on vacation” house-sitting.

    I loved The Last Empress by Anchee Min and when we get to sit again in a few weeks, I’m going to finish the sequel, Empress Orchid. I love different culture and time period books, and this did not disappoint.

    I’m also actually in the middle of The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. I never read it in high school and he is one of my favorites, and I’m definitely digging this one of his after reading East of Eden last year.

    We just moved a whole bookshelf downstairs to the living room and filled it with our favorites to recommend to others and a bunch of new ones that we have that have been on our to-read lists for a while. Frankly, I just love looking at them more often!

    | Reply Posted 7 years, 7 months ago
    • * heatherehammond says:

      Oh John Steinbeck – he does not disappoint (though he can depress a bit :). Those Min books sound interesting, too! And I am a total fan of having books I love in view…just looking at them reminds me why I loved them.

      | Reply Posted 7 years, 7 months ago
  2. my own reading lately (well, for a while now) has been a bit pathetic. but the last two weeks we were at the lakeshore, with not much else to demand attention, so i read! i’m halfway through “discipleship counseling” by neil anderson, in preparation for a training i’ll be going through in september. and also am reading a book with tim called “companion to the poor” by viv grigg, which is rocking my world a bit. this book feels important. well, both do, actually.
    i started “pigs in heaven” by Barbara Kingsolver, but it belonged to the cottage where we were staying, so i didn’t let myself get far enough in to get hooked. 🙂

    | Reply Posted 7 years, 7 months ago
    • * heatherehammond says:

      I haven’t read that Barbara Kingsolver book yet – I’ll have to check it out. I like her writing, for sure. Where are you doing your training for discipleship counseling?

      | Reply Posted 7 years, 7 months ago

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