Friday, June 20, 2008

Spring Reading Thing 2008

Wow! I just realized today is the first official day of summer. We've had terrific weather in Calgary all week and (fingers crossed) we have officially left the rainy days of spring behind. I am looking forward to spending lots of time outside with the kids this season.

Our family has enjoyed an eventful few months. Most notably, we had a new baby and bought a beautiful new home. Knowing our baby was due in April (but not expecting to buy a new house!) I chose a short list of books for this year's Spring Reading Thing. My selections included:

Sew Everything Workshop

by Diana Rupp

The Riddle of Amish Culture
by Donald B. Kraybill

The Creative Family
by Amanda Blake Soule

by Randy Alcorn

Seventh Day
by Bodie and Brock Thoene

A New Song
by Jan Karon

Surprisingly, I finished my entire book list before our baby boy arrived on April 15. (I guess I was too tired to do much else but read those last few weeks!) I particularly enjoyed two of the non-fiction selections, Sew Everything Workshop and The Creative Family. I ended up purchasing both books for our home library.

Shortly after the birth of our baby, I chewed through Jan Karon's entire Mitford series. I also read her latest novel, Home to Holly Springs. I spent many late nights rocking the baby, reading about Father Tim's (mis)adventures. I appreciate Jan Karon's dry sense of humour and the series' quirky characters. I am currently enjoying the Mitford Cookbook and Kitchen Reader. This book is less a cookbook and more a walk down Mitford's memory lane. I love the way Karon includes excerpts from her novels and personal commentary along with the recipes.

For some reason I have become infatuated with cookbooks lately. (Please take a look at my reviews here, here, here and here.) I did not always enjoy reading recipes. In the past I would habitually skip the recipe sections of women's magazines. Now I can't seem to get enough of cookbooks and food magazines. This spring I discovered the Taste of Home series of cookbooks and I recently subscribed to the magazine. I also love Martha Stewart's Everyday Food. Whenever I need a recipe fix I've started the habit of picking up a new cookbook or magazine from our local library.

This spring I also enjoyed reading Randy Alcorn's novel Deadline. To be honest, I don't often read books by male authors (for no particular reason). I found Deadline to be more intense than the books I usually like but Alcorn presented some intriguing ideas. I currently have Alcorn's follow-up novel, Dominion, waiting on my bookshelf.

I am also currently reading Bodie and Brock Thoene's Gates of Zion. I was initially excited to start the Zion Chronicles series because I love the Thoenes' A.D. Chronicles. Unfortunately, Gates of Zion feels quite flat and story's characters are disappointingly one-dimensional. What a difference twenty years of writing experience can make! I am amazed by the Thoenes' rich character development throughout the A.D. Chronicles series. I enjoyed reading Seventh Day this spring and am looking forward the the eighth installment in the series. (I may leave off the Zion Chronicles once I finish the first book.)

I always enjoy participating in Katrina's seasonal reading challenges. I think she's done a terrific job with the Spring Reading Thing. Thank you, Katrina! I'm looking forward to a summer filled with delicious books and I hope Katrina will host Fall Into Reading again in the autumn :-).

If you would like to read the wrap-up posts from other Spring Reading Thing participants, please click here.


Susanne said...

Hello Lindsay! Congratulations on the birth of your baby. And look at your list you completed through it all. Good for you. I'm from Southern Alberta and yes, I am sooo glad the rain is over and the sun is shining.

Katrina said...

Congratulations on the new little one, Linday! And on the new house! Great job getting through your list -- you did a lot of reading this spring!

Anonymous said...

I love to read and learn of new books that others think are good. I hope that the gal that did your spring reading challenge does a fall one as I would be interested in joining in. Let me know if you learn she is doing it. I too enjoy the Mitford series although I haven'd read them all yet. I gave the friend who turned me on to that series the Mitford Cookbook when she visited here last month. It looked great and I'd love to get it for myself after I'm one with the series.