As many of you know, I’m a bit obsessive passionate about books. Since many of you are also readers, I’ve decided to start a Friday Book Chat series to create a space to write about some of my favorite books, to share reviews, and to let you know about any great reads that are currently on sale.
To kick this series off I wanted to share my most anticipated new releases of 2015. If you aren’t interested in this, you can skip to the bottom where I mention some current Kindle deals.
A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson. (May 5th) Ok, Kate Atkinson is just fantastic. Her Jackson Brodie mysteries are maybe the best literary mysteries I’ve ever read, but her non-mystery fiction is also terrific. This book is a companion to her most recent book Life After Life which followed the life (lives?) of Ursula Todd as she is born and dies over and over making different decisions in each life that drastically change the events of her life and even of history. It’s a masterful, fascinating book. The new novel centers on the character of Ursula’s brother. Teddy, an ordinary man living in extraordinary times. The novels are set in England before and during the WWII era.
The Lake House by Kate Morton. (October 13th) Kate Morton is an Australian novelist whose previous books (The Forgotten Garden, The Distant Hours, The House at Riverton, The Secret Keeper) have all been huge hits for me. The setting plays a huge role in each of Morton’s books which read like gothic mysteries – old houses full of old family secrets. I haven’t seen a synopsis for this book yet, but I don’t even care. I’ve enjoyed her other books so much I’m willing to buy this one blind.
Searching For Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church by Rachel Held Evans. (April 14th) Evans is a well-known Christian writer and blogger who often writes about feminism and patriarchy and other hot-button issues. While I sometimes find her blog a little aggressive, I’ve loved her two previous books. In fact, her first book, Faith Unraveled, is one of my all-time favorite spiritual memoirs because I relate to it so much. I also really enjoyed A Year of Biblical Womanhood. This book is organized around the seven sacraments and takes readers through Evans’s journey from cynicism to hope in being able to make peace with the Church.
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert. (Sept. 22nd) Gilbert is, of course, most famous for Eat, Pray, Love (which I mostly enjoyed as a book and adored as a movie) but she’s also written some really great literary fiction as well (The Signature of All Things). I’m mostly intrigued by this book after reading this TED talk she gave on the topic of your elusive creative genius.
Out of Sorts by Sarah Bessey. (August 11th) I’m going to include this even though I’m not entirely sure how much I’m anticipating it. Bessey’s first book, Jesus Feminist, was a good book with some really good things to say about how being a Christian and being a feminist go hand-in-hand, but ultimately it was more about women in the Church than it was about feminism in general. I also expected it to be more relational because her blog is so beautiful and personal, but it turned out to be more exegetical than I expected. My friend, Karissa, described it as being mis-marketed and I think that’s true. (You should still read it, though!) The publisher describes the new book this way: “”As she candidly shares her wrestlings with core issues—such as who Jesus is, what place the Church has in our lives, how to disagree yet remain within a community, and how to love the Bible for what it is rather than what we want it to be—she teaches us how to walk courageously through our own tough questions.”
Addie Zierman has a new book coming out sometime this year (haven’t seen a title or publication date announcement on this yet) which I am thrilled about because her debut book, When We Were On Fire, is the reason I got up the courage to start working on my own book. Because i resonated with her story so deeply it made me feel like mine just might matter too. Also, she is a STUNNING writer.
What are you looking forward to? Anything I should know about?
On Sale as of 2/06/2015
*Note: I use the US Amazon site – it’s possible that prices are different if you are shopping from elsewhere.
The Fault in Our Stars, John Green ($2.99) So good, but read with tissues.
The Invention of Wings, Sue Monk Kidd ($3.99) This was on many “best of the year” lists for 2014.
Eleanor and Park, Rainbow Rowell ($4.99) Reading this right now and it’s great.
An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith, Barbara Brown Taylor ($3.09)
Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis, Lauren Winner ($1.99) I just finished this book recently and it was one of those books that didn’t stand out as a whole, but there were certain bits that were very, very good.
Three Wishes, Liane Moriarty ($2.99)
The Wise Man’s Fear, Patrick Rothfuss ($5.99) See above.
The Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern ($4.99) I adore this book.