Spring Reads: Slightly Inspired and Moderately Good

Spring Reads: Slightly Inspired and Moderately Good

Well, if that title for this Spring Reads post didn’t just grab you by the eyeballs and pull you in, I don’t know what will!

Let’s just suffice it to say that the absolute reading bender that I went on in March totally sobered up come April.  Inspiration evaded me.  Nothing grabbed my interest (despite this killer list of titles y’all came up with!).  And, frankly, I was so busy and exhausted, I didn’t feel much like reading.

But yet, here I am and here you are.  So, let’s talk some books, shall we?  I would love to hear if you’ve read any of these titles and what you thought of them!

And let’s just hope for more time, inspiration, and quality in June!

Marilla of Green Gables by Sarah McCoy

As an absolute fan and devotee of the Anne of Green Gables series, I was both intrigued by and scared of this book.  I wanted it to be wonderful.  I wanted to love it and feel that kindred spirit quality that the Anne books gave me.  But, to be honest, I kind of also wanted it to be awful.  After all, how dare she write in L.M. Montgomery’s shoes about our dear Marilla?  How brave does someone need to be to write fan fiction at this level?

Well, sure enough, it was somewhere in between.  I didn’t love it, but it wasn’t awful.  It didn’t offend me as an Anne reader, but it didn’t seem particularly L.M. Montgomey-ian, either.  (Just go with it, this is totally a thing.)

If you aren’t someone who knows the Anne of Green Gables books inside and out, but who likes historic fiction, then you’ll probably enjoy this book.

Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan

Does a book that took place in the 1950s count as historical fiction?  I mean, it is historical to me, but I know plenty of people who might disagree.

Regardless, this book is a fictionalized biography of author Joy Davidman and her relationship with C.S. Lewis.  Taking place in both New York State and several places around England, it tells the tale of Davidman’s life leading up to her marriage to the beloved British author and her death shortly thereafter.  It’s well written and engaging, even though it does seem to drag along at times.

In addition detailing the couple’s friendship and love story, it also describes their faith journeys and conversion stories.  I thought the author did a wonderful job in sharing how a person can love their faith, be challenged by it, and still question it deeply and frequently.

The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom

Let’s just say it.  This book is the best of this bunch.

Corrie Ten Boom was, by all accounts, a plain, boring, perfectly normal spinster when WWII broke out.  But when the persecution of Jews began in her home of Haarlem, this ordinary woman showed exactly how extraordinary she and her family truly were.  This unassuming woman was a powerhouse in the Dutch Resistance and hid many Jewish people behind a false wall in her own bedroom.

The time came, however, when her actions and those of her family were discovered.  She, her sister, and their father were jailed.  Ultimately, she and her sister were sent to a concentration camp.  Reading the details of their treatment and how they not only maintained but grew in their faith in God and love of Jesus during this horrendous time truly touched my heart.

Written in a very simple and straightforward manner, I’d highly recommend it to anyone interested in WWII or persistence in faith.

The Weight of Ink by Rachel Kadish

Over 11K people on Goodreads have given this book an average of 4.2 stars out of 5.  I am not one of those people.

In the spirit of full disclosure, though, I didn’t finish the book.  Yes, I gave up on it.  I can barely believe I am admitting this publicly, but I got about a quarter of the way through and just couldn’t do it anymore.  It was the most boring, slow-moving book I had picked up in a long time.  Which is such a shame because the premise was so promising!

The story moves back and forth in time between modern day historians who find 350 year old writings of a Jewish rabbi in London and that same rabbi and his scribe in the 17th century.  I always find the Jewish faith and history incredibly interesting, so I was excited to read this work of literary fiction.  However, when the characters failed to grab my interest and the story just wouldn’t progress, I had to put it aside.  Of course, the fact that it is almost 600 pages long contributed to my decision.  If I’m going to read a book that long, I had better really really like it.

What’s up next?

I have three books currently sitting on my bedside.  One is historical fiction by a favorite author.  Another is a currently popular book that I’ve heard great things about.  And the last is a new book by Catholic author and fellow Blessed is She writer, Shannon K. Evans.  Will I make it through all three in June?  Fingers crossed!

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