I’ve picked up my reading pace over the last several months, so I thought I’d list out the books I’ve read in that span. I’m not one for proper, thorough, nuanced book reviews, but I’m happy to offer my two cents here and there. I’m always including affiliate links for these titles because I love you and you love me. Cool? Let’s get into it:
A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller — I just finished re-reading this one, and it’s still great. It’s so personal and, at times, gut-wrenching. And now that Blue Like Jazz: the Movie is a reality, it’s great to revisit the stories about the screenplay coming together.
Anything You Want by Derek Sivers — This is a quick but fascinating book from Seth Godin’s Domino Project. Sivers offers leaders and aspiring entrepreneurs advice in the form of his experiences founding, running, and selling CDBaby. It’s accessible and pretty handy, too.
The Book of Basketball: The NBA According to The Sports Guy by Bill Simmons — This book is way too long and contains way too much information about the history of the game of basketball. But I read every word and enjoyed most of it. Simmons is great, and it’s fun to read about the legends of the game.
Born Standing Up: A Comic’s Life by Steve Martin — Steve Martin was done with stand-up comedy by the time I was born, so I always think of him as an actor. That and the fact that Martin is a skilled writer made for an entertaining read. As someone who feels as though I’m still honing in on the whole career thing, it was motivating to learn about all the work Martin put in over the years honing his craft.
Downtown Owl by Chuck Klosterman — I love Chuck Klosterman, but I didn’t like this novel. Truth be told, I bailed halfway through for two reasons: I didn’t care about any of the characters and I didn’t care what happened next. Sorry, Chuck, but I would like to read The Visible Man someday.
The Furious Longing of God by Brennan Manning — I love the combination of the rawness of Manning’s past and the beauty of his prose. As a reader with my share of identity and esteem issues, the message of this book was so timely and meaningful for me. Of course, that means the message was also plenty challenging for me, and that’s a good thing.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson — I felt compelled to read this book before the movie came out, though I’m not sure why. The narrative is tough to stomach in places, but the pacing is good and the mystery hooked me. I imagine I’ll finish this trilogy at some point, but I’m not chomping at the bit like I was with …
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins — Yes, this counts as three books, but I felt it might be patronizing to list them individually. It’s also patronizing to classify these as Young Adult, right? These books were incredible and I consumed them at an alarming rate. Just read ’em already.
Jesus, My Father, the CIA, and Me: A Memoir of Sorts by Ian Cron — I enjoyed Ian Cron’s Chasing Francis but I loved this book. I resonated with Cron’s story of growing up and trying to make sense of God and family and how to deal with it all. Cron’s book illustrates the power of digging into our stories (rather than running from them) and trying to make peace with them.
Pulphead: Essays by John Jeremiah Sullivan — Okay, I’m almost done with this one, but I’m taking it essay by essay. The first essay, about Sullivan’s trip to a Christian music festival and his adolescent journey into (and out of) Christianity, roped me in. From there, I enjoyed his observations and storytelling on everything from Native American caves to the time his brother almost died by electrocution.
UNTITLED: Thoughts on the Creative Process by Blaine Hogan — Blaine is the Creative Director at Willow Creek Community Church, someone who makes good things, and an all-around nice guy. His first book is accessible and inspiring, so grab it if the creative process is part of your life in some way. (That means you.)
The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited by Scot McKnight — In the time I’ve spent working on this post I’ve almost made it to the halfway point in this one. Dang, it’s good. McKnight has opened my eyes to both the gospel as the Bible articulates it and our modern-day Plan of Salvation culture. And no, they’re not the same thing.
What have you been reading? Any recommendations?