Today I’m sharing a list of the best books I read this past spring.
My goal for the last three years has been ro read 30 books, so I thought it was time to level up to 40 for this year.
I’m trending just slightly ahead of schedule which is nice, and I’ve basically been trying to read one book a week in order to stay on top of my progress. For more of my tips on how to read more books, check out this post.
I have to say that I have read so many amazing books this year. I think I said the same thing about my winter list, but I really did have a hard time narrowing this down!
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“We believe the one who has power. He is the one who gets to write the story. So when you study history, you must ask yourself, Whose story am I missing? Whose voice was suppressed so that this voice could come forth? Once you have figured that out, you must find that story too. From there you get a clearer, yet still imperfect, picture.”
This book was phenomenal. Homegoing begins with two sisters in Ghana in the 18th century, Effia and Esi. Effia marries a white colonist and stays in Ghana, and Esi is captured and put on a slave ship heading to America. The story follows each of their lines of descendents, each chapter providing a snapshot into one of their descendent’s lives and corresponding time period. I almost had to quit the book because I found the first few chapters so upsetting, but my friend who recommended it to me encouraged me to stick with it. This is such a beautiful, important work of art, and I recommend it to everyone, seriously.
“He had the rather uncomfortable feeling that he only really existed in the eye of the beholder, that when he stopped being noticed, he actually stopped being. Did that make him horribly shallow? And if so, did it matter?”
The Authenticity Project is a clever, heartwarming story about a group of people in London whose lives become intertwined by an abandoned notebook at a coffee shop. I really enjoyed this book and found each of the characters so loveable. I learned after I read this that the author’s inspiration for the book came from her journey to getting sober, and that just made me love it all the more.
“Sometimes I think that’s why we’re so drawn to each other. Because he’s used to being the steadfast big brother and I’m used to being the annoying little sister. It’s a dynamic we understand: I lovingly tease him; he makes the entire world feel safer for me.”
This is the summer read we’ve all been waiting for. This story is about two best friends, Alex and Poppy, who met in college and take a trip together every summer throughout all of their twenties. The book details the journey of their relationship and bounces back and forth between their past vacations and the present day on their trip to Palm Springs. I loved this book so much that I didn’t want it to end. The writing is witty and quick, and it’s just the most perfect beachy book.
“You remember other dark nights of the soul and how by dawn they always broke. You discover that everything helps you learn who you are, and that this is why we are here.”
Every time I read something by Anne Lammott, I think, “okay, now THIS is her best work.” So, it didn’t really surprise me when I thought the same about Dusk Night Dawn. In this collection of essays, she talks a lot about darkness and struggle and finding the light. It’s hilarious and powerful, and I loved it.
“Many people mess up every new day with what happened yesterday. They insist on bringing into today the failures of yesterday, and in so doing pollute a potentially wonderful day. When bitterness, resentment, and revenge are allowed to live in the human heart, words of affirmation will be impossible to speak. The best thing we can do with past failures is to let them be history.”
I’m really glad I read this. If you haven’t yet read The Five Love Languages, I recommend starting there. This book is all about applying the same concepts to your relationships with your kids. This wasn’t necessarily groundbreaking, but I found so many practical tips in it. And although my girls aren’t really old enough to have a specific love language (the author recommends employing all five with small children), I will definitely be returning to this in a few years.
“Worthiness doesn’t have prerequisites.”
Motherhood has brought out a particularly neurotic side of me. I find myself conflating my worth with my productivity, and I am easily set off by chaos in the house and my surroundings. (don’t worry–therapy is on my to-do list for 2021). I found this book enormously helpful and encouraging in my current phase of life. Brené outlines the principles of what she calls wholehearted living and talks a lot about shame and perfectionism. I found a lot of her talking points to be great jumping-off points for my own self-reflection.