Thursday, April 7, 2016

March Reads

Blood on Snow          
Blood on Snow by Jo Nesbo
I love listening to Jo Nesbo's books.  The reader of his books have been men and so when I started listening to this one I was caught off guard that it was a female voice.  Sometimes the narrator's voice can make or break it for me.  I at first found her voice to be just "too much".  I can only describe it as combo of Bronx, Jersey, Boston, smoker's voice.  However, I soon got over it and the story unfolded.  It was good.  Not a Harry Hole book, so not one of my favorite's by Jo, but still full of mystery, graphic writing/scenes, and real honest personal relationships. 


        The Redeemer (Harry Hole, #6)          

Two Nesbo audiobooks in one month is a good month in my reading/listening mind.  This one I enjoyed, but struggled a little with because of the fact that I've read/listened to subsequent books in the Harry Hole series (note to self really best to start at the beginning and go forward).  The story was still well written and for some reason listening to this book made me feel that the writing was even more graphic with this Harry Hole story.  Great mystery, great story line, and interesting characters- surprised me at the end- another win for Jo Nesbo. 
        The Ship of Brides          
I LOVE Jojo Moyes' books.  She is such a successful story teller.  This story was based on the real life stories of some of the brides from Australia that took a British Naval ship following the end of WWII towards their British officer husbands in England.  It is an amazing story about how all of us are so different, we all have our own stories, yet we all can be connected via love, life, family, etc.  The characters in this book were so well thought out and truly believable.  Great story! 
        The Rosie Effect (Don Tillman, #2)          

I was somewhat disappointed with this one.  I really enjoyed the first one, but this one just didn't have the same hold on me to read.  I finished it and thought it was a fun story, but the first one really was so much more entertaining.  In the 2nd "Rosie" book Don Tillman is soon to be a father and so it is his experience, along with his wife's, his friends, and family on how things go when you are waiting for a child to enter your world. 
         1        Speaking Christian: Why Christian Words Have Lost Their Meaning and Power - And How They Can Be Restored          

This was a our book read for Lent at my Lutheran Church.  I found it an interesting read and it helped me better understand certain Christian terms/words and how people can really flub up something like talking about religion and being Christian.  It also reminded me of how little some of us talk about our own religious experiences and if we don't talk about those experiences how will others hear about the great things (experiences, support, feelings) that can come out of religion and being Christian if all we normally hear about is the negatives of religion and Christianity.  Here are a few quotes that really hit me hard or made me stop to question when reading this book. 
pg 26 "But literalism is not only a public relations problem that needs to be addressed for the sake of outsiders.  It also very much affects insiders; for Christians, it narrows, reduces, flattens, and ultimately distorts the meanings of the Bible and Christianity."  (totally agree with this, literalism was why I was turned off to reading the Bible for so long).
pg 45 "salvation as deliverance and rescue".
pg 68 "When someone says to me, 'I don't believe in God', I always respond' Tell me about the God you don't believe in' ". 
pg 79 "Fear-based religion, fear-based individual behavior, and fear-based politics most often go together".
pg 100 "What if Christianity and salvation are really about transformation- the transformation of ourselves and the world?"
pg 155 "Grace means that God's live is a given".
pg 173 "many of us know people of other religions and also know that all religions, including Christianity, are particular historical responses to the experience of God, the sacred, in the cultures in which hey originated.  How then, can any one of them truthfully proclaim itself to be 'the only way' ?"
This book produced some great discussion, questions, and helped people talk about their religious experiences. 
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
I had bought this book awhile ago, started it, and then set it down and got caught up in other reads.  So finally I finished it this month and I found it filed with some really great words.  Here are a few...
pg 2 "Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgment and advice, we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen."
pg 33 " To feel is to be vulnerable.  To believe vulnerability is weakness is to believe that feeling is weakness". 
pg 34 "Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy and creativity."
pg 35 "If we want to reclaim the essential emotional part of our lives and reignite our passion and purpose, we have to learn how to own and engage with our vulnerability and how to feel the emotions that come with it."
pg 45 "If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."
pg 40 "Only when we're brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light". 
pg 137 "If we stay busy enough, the truth of our lives won't catch up with us."
pg 197 " Today's organization are so metric-focused in their evaluation of performance that giving, receiving, and soliciting valuable feedback ironically has become rare."
pg 198 "We just need to learn how to give feedback in a way that inspires growth and engagement."
pg 214 "Are you the adult you want your child to grow up to be?"
pg 219 " if we want our children to love and accept who they are, our job is to love and accept who we are."
Brave Enough
Brave Enough by Cheryl Strayed
Lastly I picked it up this quick read by Cheryl Strayed, author of "Wild"- which I loved and if you haven't read that one- read it!
This book was a compilation of quotes she has written throughout the years.  You know me and my love of quotes.  I picked it up and also picked up my pen as I added to my "quotes" book.  Here are just a few...
"I believe in the power of words to help us reset our intentions, clarify our thoughts, and create a counter narrative tot he voice of doubt many of us have murmuring in our heads."- Intro
pg 3 "Be brave enough to break your own heart."
pg 21 "Transformation doesn't ask that you stop being you.  It demands that you find a way back to the authenticity and strength that's already inside of you.  You only have to bloom."
pg 43 "Real love moves freely in both directions."
pg 61 "When we fail to set healthy limits we become bitter, angry, tiny-hearted people."
pg125 "You don't have a right to the cards you believe you should have been dealt.  You have an obligation to play the hell out of the ones you're holding."
pg 133 "Trusting yourself means living out what you already know to be true."
Wow- I'm exhausted just writing all of the above.  Guess I'm ready to curl up by the fire (yes a fire in April) and read another book. Happy reading friends!

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