Saturday, January 2, 2010

Top 9 Reads of 09

This is so tough! I read a lot of good books this year. I'm not sure how to narrow it down to just nine, but here I try! After number one, these are pretty much in a random order...or maybe-sorta-kinda chronological order...all of these have been reviewed by me here.
  1. A Chance to Die by Elizabeth Elliot. I think this really was my number one this year. It was great! It's a biography of Amy "Amma" Carmichael who was a missionary to India. This book got me thinking and inspired me so much, I can't do it justice here. I have quotes from it up on my wall and I think about it all the time, and its been nearly 5 months since I finished it! I really, really recommend this one!
  2. The Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter. A teen fiction series about Cammie Morgan, a teenage girl who attends a top-secret, all-girls spy school. I loved this series and can't wait for the next book to come out! Makes me really want to be a spy.
  3. The Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld. I did a post about the series not to long ago. Great series about a futuristic society where normal is ugly and pretty may be deadly. Read it. Love it.
  4. Marco Polo Didn't Go There and Vagabonding by Rolf Potts. These two books have great travel stories and tips from a seasoned pro. Made my case of wanderlust worse, but I loved these books!
  5. Completely His by Shannon Etheridge. From a tragic accident in her teenage years, Etheridge learned what a relationship with God can really be. This book shares her personal story with a detailed look at what it means to be the bride of Christ. Excellent, excellent book! Not only does it state the goal, but it gives practical steps for getting there.
  6. SOLD by Patricia McCormick. Lakshmi is thirteen years-old when she is sold into prostitution. This book is written in a series of short prose that chronicles her first few months in the brothel and the hope for escape. As intense and sad as this subject is, I loved this book. This author has a way of taking a serious subject and writing about it in a way that makes you feel every emotion and come out understanding and relating to the character. She has another book called Cut that's great too. (I read that last year).
  7. Driving Mr. Albert by Michael Peterniti. Great weird, educational book. Paterniti learns that when Albert Einstein died, the doctor doing the autopsy removed his brain, placed it in a jar, and took it home. Paterniti then arranges a meeting with the doctor and ends up on a cross-country road trip with Einstein's brain in the trunk. Funky story and I loved it.
  8. Moon Over Tokyo by Siri Mitchell. One of my fave authors. This book is about Allie, an American living in Japan who prays one of those dangerous, life-altering prayers only to find that the answer to that prayer requires risk and a change of perception. This was my first book of 2009 and it definitely inspired me, like most of her books do. (I actually started a blog because of her book The Cubicle Next Door.)
  9. God is Closer Than You Think by John Ortberg. This book is similar to Completely His but from a different angle. It is about living daily with God. Knowing that He is present every moment and wants to be actively seen. Great book. Reminds me a little of Dangerous Wonder.
  10. Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris. A book by teens that every teen should read. It is a battle cry for teens to rise up and change things. It states that teens can do anything they set their minds to and should not waste their teenage years. Seriously, all teens should read this. All adults should read this and pass it on to a teen in their life. Our world would never be the same.
  11. Izzy, Willy-Nilly by Cynthia Voight. A bad date for 15-year-old Izzy ends with a car crash that claims her left leg and changes everything in her formerly-perfect life. Again, a tough subject, a hovering dark mood to the entire book, yet I loved it. Very relatable and thought-provoking.
  12. amazing grace by Megan Shull. Grace is a teenage tennis-superstar who decides she's had enough of fame and super-high expectations. Overnight, she receives a makeover and is whisked off to a small town in Alaska where she is no longer famous. She's average. Now she just needs to figure out who she really is and what she wants. Loved this book. Very sweet, nice read. The style was very cool, a cross between a diary and a conversation with a best friend.
  13. Hope and Healing for Kids Who Cut by Marv Penner. Amazing resource with tons of info, stories and advice. Its geared towards youth workers, but parents and teens dealing with the issue will also find it useful. Possibly the best, most thoroughly researched resource for self-injury available.

Ok, so I couldn't narrow it down to nine :) Even this list is missing some of my favorites from the year. I could easily have done a top 20 list! Hope you enjoyed it and found some new books to read. I own most of these if I know you and you want to borrow one. Happy New Year!

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