Thursday, May 1, 2008


C.S. Lewis once said (and I paraphrase) that you should read one old book (100 years or more) for every two contemporary ones because the old ones give you a different perspective. That made me think about the books I read. There are a lot of old books that I love like the ones by Jane Austen (especially Pride and Prejudice), and I enjoy Jules Verne, Daniel Defoe, Jonathan Swift, etc.. I realize that I read a lot of novels, also, and so I have modified Lewis' advice: for every two novels I read, I try to read one that is non-fiction. Sometimes I read a biography, and sometimes a self-help book, like how to be a better wife, time-manager, whatever. Out of every three books I read, I do try to read one that is old.

I heard on the radio that the average person reads 472 books in his lifetime. I think I own that many. Do you realize that is less than seven books a year if the average person lives to be 70? So far this year I have read at least six, and it's only May and it's been a very busy year so far.

One book I have read is All Things for Good: The Steadfast Fidelity of Stonewall Jackson by J. Steven Wilkins. It was very, very good. I have read several biographies that were about Christians but written by non-Christians, and they have downplayed the faith of the people about which they wrote. This book was not like that. Wilkins quotes Jackson quoting Scripture and how Jackson applied that Scripture to his life. I highly recommend this book, especially for those of you looking for well-written biographies of godly men. I really enjoyed reading this book, and I am looking forward to Daniel reading it one day. I hope that John reads it, too, when things slow down a little in our lives.

I have also been reading the Anne of Green Gables series. If you have not read those, you should. I have the feeling, however, that most of my readers have read these books. Since they were written in the early 1900's, I am counting them as my "old" books. I feel like I'm cheating, though, since I enjoy them so much.

So, what have you been reading? Do you get to read enough that you have a system by which you select the next book you read? Please leave me a comment. I love to read, and I enjoy hearing what others are reading as well.


Angela said...

I love the Anne of Green Gables books! I read the entire series once a year. I also read the Little House on the Prairie series once a year. They're kind of juvenile, but I enjoy them every time and I recommend them to anyone who hasn't read them. Right now, though, I'm reading a Nicholas Sparks book called At First Sight. It's pretty good...but I can't say that I'm really learning anything from it. That's what I need to work on--reading things that help me to grow--rather than just reading "fluffy" books all the time.

~Babychaser~ said...

I love to read, but I'll admit that I haven't done much in the last few years. When I do read, it is rarely fiction... not that I don't like fiction. Quite the opposite actually! I can read a self-help type book no problem, but if I start reading anything with a plot, I'm apt to get "stuck" and nothing else gets done until it is done! Audio books help with this, but I haven't done many of those either. When I was pregnant with DS I read a series of novels, but I was really sick all the time and that's about all I could do to distract myself. These days I do much of my reading online... blogs and articles and such. They work nicely as little snippets throughout the day. I do also have a Christian living book going in the bathroom these days (something I started a couple months ago). Between bath time and (ehem) whatever else, there are little snippets of time for reading in there. :) It helps to pick books that have short sections within the chapters. :) Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss was a good one for that!... not to mention a must read for ALL women!

MyKidsMom said...

I'm not going to say how many books I read, I'm afraid it might sound like that is all I do! But I don't watch tv, so books are my slow-down technique at night. I love mysterys, but you really have to dig to find ones that are well-written and not lacking in morals (if I wanted to read that I would read harlequins...which I don't!)

I really love historical novels. Right now I've been searching online for books by Linda Chaiken, they've been highly recommended to me. And Anne of Green Gables has to be one of the best series EVER, it has captured so many hearts (I own all the videos too). I really loved Louisa May ALcotts books like Rose in Bloom and Jo's boys. And Jane Austin's books (have you read the Jane Austin mystery books?)

Now I'm going to admit something: I don't read alot of self-help or "deep" books. I find after a long day of homeschooling kids, I want to read something that's "easy" reading, purely for enjoyment, not instructing. I'm not sure if that makes sense, but it's where I'm at right now in my life. I keep a small stack of these kind of books handy however for sometime when I might have an unexpected free time to read them. A few I'm working on right now are Creative Discipline, Raising your Children for Christ, and The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage.

By the way, I include missionary bios and historical bios as easy reading (because they are to me) and they're also among my favorites. Sometimes I think maybe I take reading too far...LoL.

Maybe we should start our own bookclub;)

daynagonzalez said...

Ever read Ted Dekker? He's much different than anything you've described, but I highly recommend him to anyone who loves suspense. He writes allegories in the form of thrillers. Each page will keep you on the edge of your seat!