December 27, 2017

10 Great Reads of 2017

I was able to complete most of my goals from this past reading year.

My first goal was to read 50 books, and I was able to surpass that to 66 books.

Secondly, I wanted to finish up a couple books from a reading challenge I did in 2016 and I was able to get to them both. They also both made it onto my favorites here of 2017! (Holiness by J.C. Ryle  and God's Love by R.C. Sproul)

Thirdly, I wanted to do a little re-reading. Something I don't normally do. I was able to get to three of the six I had mentioned... 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by Harper Lee, which I loved even more the second time around. 'The Last Sinner Eater' by Francine Rivers which I listened to on audio and really enjoyed once again, and 'If' by Amy Carmichael, which was just as convicting as the first time I read it, such a beautiful little book.

Fourthly, I wanted to read some classics. I am happy to have been able to read 13 classics! I quite enjoyed most of them.

Fifthly, I wanted to read at least one biography, one history book and one memoir this year. I had no problem fulfilling this challenge, because I love these kinds of books.

And lastly, I read from my Bible and was excited to grasp truths I didn't understand before. That's one of the great things about re-reading your Bible, God always brings greater understanding, when you seek Him through His Word.

"My son, if you receive my words,
And treasure my commands within you,

So that you incline your ear to wisdom, And apply your heart to understanding;

Yes, if you cry out for discernment, And lift up your voice for understanding,

If you seek her as silver,
And search for her as for hidden treasures;

Then you will understand the fear of the LORD,
And find the knowledge of God.

For the LORD gives wisdom;
From His mouth come knowledge and understanding"  Proverbs 2:1-6

Now onto my favorite reads of 2017! ...

Holiness by J.C. Ryle - This was a very deep and gratifying read. As I grow older, I see that the Christian life has nothing to do with the external things of life such as health, wealth or prosperity. Though I'm thankful for all He has given me, the true Christian life is about holiness.

This book reminded me of this, that we are to be holy, as He is holy. (1 Peter 1:16) And that we are to be continually transformed by the renewing of our minds, so that we can know God's will, which is good, pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2) These things show our true Christianity.

You can read my thoughts on this book... HERE

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery - This was the first time I'd read Anne of Green Gables and I loved it so much! Such a sweet and beautiful story. L.M. Montgomery makes you fall in love with this little orphan girl who has so much to give and makes you want to go outside and enjoy the beauty of God's creation. Truly a classic.

Between Shades of Grey by Ruth Sepetys - This was a YA novel set during WW2 in Lithuania, where a young girl, her mother and brother are separated from their father and taken by the Soviets to a work camp in Siberia. 

It was extremely moving and well written. 

This book brought the characters to life and makes you feel for them with compassion and understanding. It is now in the process of being made into a movie, which will be called 'Ashes in the Snow.'

David Copperfield by Charles Dickens - This book really stayed with me after I turned the last page. Though, for me, David Copperfield wasn't the most interesting character in the novel, Dickens wrote many others that were. These three were my favorites, Mrs. Peggotty, her brother Mr. Peggotty and Agnes Wickfield.

Especially Mr. Peggotty, who under his rough exterior we find a loving and caring man who reflects the character of Christ as he shows grace towards others. There's just nothing better than a gracious character in a book.

Taking God At His Word by Kevin DeYoung -  I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The importance of Scripture is being belittled more and more these days and it was refreshing to read a book from someone who honors God's Word, it's beauty, authority and inerrancy.

You can read my thoughts... HERE

In Order to Live by Yeonmi Park - This memoir was extremely moving. Told by a young girl who escaped North Korea with her mother and sister, she shares what they experienced.

You can see her speak... HERE

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - This was a re-read for me and I enjoyed it even more the second time around.

You can read my thoughts... HERE

God's Love by R. C. Sproul - I was so saddened to hear of R.C. Sproul's passing. His books have been an encouragement to me and have helped me grow in my faith. This one really showed me how extraordinary God's love really is.

You can read my thoughts... HERE

The Stranger in the Woods by Michael Finkel - This book was so interesting. Michael Finkel interviews Christopher Knight, who is known as the 'Hermit of North Pond', a man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years.

I've heard some call him an extreme introvert, but as a introvert myself I have to disagree. Introverts enjoy spending time alone, but they also love spending time with family and friends. As someone who wanted no interaction with any other person, Christopher Knight is beyond being introverted, he is a hermit. Two completely different things.

I found this story fascinating and even though I couldn't relate to him, I felt for him and how misunderstood he must be.

Hidden Christmas by Timothy Keller - I was surprised at how much I loved this book. I just read it here in December and was reminded of why the Christmas story never gets old. It's because it's really not a story at all. The birth of Christ was an historical event that changed my life and the lives of many others. An event that will effect eternity.

Born in a manger, the Light in this darkened world.

Death on a cross, risen from the dead. His love is gracious and sacrificial.

He is the greatest gift ever given.

Hope you all had a wonderful and enjoyable Christmas and have a happy and blessed new year in 2018!


  1. 66 books? OM word! This is a great post!

  2. I'm inpressed you've read so many books! The only one of these I've read is To Kill A Mockingbird but several of these sound great so thanks for giving me some new ideas!

    1. I hope you enjoy whatever you read this year! Thanks for stopping by Lesley. : )

  3. This is a great list. I love Anne of Green Gables and you can feel the oppression of the industrial age in Dicken's novels. Have a Happy New YEar.

    1. Happy New Year to you too! Thanks for stopping by.

  4. Thanks, Cathy. I found a couple of books on your list that I added to my TBR list.

  5. I saw your link from the Semicolon blog. Holiness and Anne of Green Gables are amongst my favourite books and probably deserve a rereading in 2018. Between Shades of Gray has just gone on my wish list. Thank you for the recommendation.

    1. I'm looking forward to getting to the rest of the Anne series. I've read the first three. Enjoy your reading year ahead! Glad you stopped by Sarah. : )

  6. Congrats on finishing 66 books! Just like the Bible. :) I didn't read To Kill a Mockingbird until I was an adult, but have since read it twice as well. I still haven't read David Copperfield. Maybe one day.... Happy New Year!

    1. Haha, I just noticed that when I read your comment!

      Happy New Year to you too Lisa! : )

  7. Wow what a goal and what a success. I've had goals of one a week. It just doesn't happen, but I do get all my Bible studies done. With 3 new 9 month old grand babies I'm busy.

    1. Wow you must be busy! God bless as you help with your grandbabies!

  8. What a lovely list! I've added Keller's book to my TBR list for next year.

    1. Keller's book is wonderful, hope you enjoy it next Christmas season. : )

  9. What an interesting list of great reads! I love the Anne of Green Gables books too - they have been favorites since I was a little girl.

    1. Glad you found some interesting looking books here. Thanks for stopping by Kym!

  10. Love your have three of my personal favorites on it!


Feel free to leave your own thoughts in the comments. I try to respond to all of them by the end of the week. : )

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