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40 Books I Plan to Read in 2019

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I plan to read these 40 books from my bookshelf in 2019!! What's on your list?

One of my goals for 2019 was to read 40 books I already own. I finally had a chance to go through our bookshelves today and pick the 40 books I want to read.

For those who are interested, here are the books I chose (please note: I have not read these books, so by sharing them here, I am not endorsing or recommending them):

  1. Secret Daughter
  2. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society
  3. The Choosing
  4. Paris Letters
  5. Becoming Mrs. Lewis
  6. How to Walk Away
  7. A Gentlemen in Moscow
  8. Before We Were Yours
  9. Beneath a Scarlet Sky
  10. The Austen Escape
  11. Come Matter Here
  12. It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way
  13. Bearing Hope
  14. A Severe Mercy
  15. In the Secret Service
  16. Brave Love
  17. The Wondering Years
  18. Etched in Sand
  19. Embrace the Suck
  20. As Many Reps as Possible
  21. Forgiving God
  22. Daring to Hope
  23. Thirst
  24. Off the Clock
  25. Slow
  26. Everybody Always
  27. Begin Again
  28. The Healing Compass
  29. Book Girl
  30. So Good They Can’t Ignore You
  31. Dare to Lead
  32. Life on the Vine
  33. Preach to Yourself
  34. The Ministry of Ordinary Places
  35. Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors
  36. Parenting
  37. The Path Between Us
  38. Fierce Marriage
  39. Whisper
  40. Only Love Today
  41. When People Are Big and God is Small (whoops! I guess I actually picked out 41! I guess the last one is a bonus!)

By the way, I’m tracking the books I read this year on GoodReads and I’ll be doing a monthly update on what I read and a little review of each book!

Have you read any of these books? Which one(s) should I read first?

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  • April says:

    These are mostly books publishers have sent you?

    I LOVED Book Girl. It’s a book for adults, not girls. I read it all the way through. I’ve read 3 of her recommendations so far. All were excellent.

    • A few were ones I’ve gotten from publishers, some were ones I got for free from (Book Girl was one of those!), and some were ones I bought myself or were given to me as gifts.

  • Melody says:

    I’ve read a handful of those books! I just finished Everybody, Always by Bob Goff this week and LOVED it. I’ve recently read Parenting by Tripp and Daring to Hope by Katie Davis, and liked those too. For the non-fiction, Before we Were Yours was excellent and so sad, but worth it, and I’ve read the Guernsey Literary and Potato Pie Society and I remember liking it, but it was some time ago, so I can’t really remember that one. I’m sad to admit that I just can’t get into Brene Brown’s books- I’ve tried two, including Dare to Lead- but I always feel like she just goes on and on and on and I lose interest. But everyone is different, that’s what makes the world go round!

  • Jennifer says:

    I loved “Before We were Yours” but it is SO sad, and some parts were painful to read…but the end ties it together well. I had to sit and process it for a while afterward.

  • Nikki says:

    I have several of the same ones in my to be read pile! Daring to Hope was so good! That one really stuck with me. I can’t wait to read your reviews on these. I always get such great book recommendations from you!

  • Robin Lynch says:

    I loved How to Walk Away! It was a great story that made you think too. I recently read Kather Center’s next book, Things You Save in a Fire, another great read!
    Looks like a great stack of books, cant wait to hear what you think about them!

  • Robyn says:

    The Audible version of A Gentleman in Moscow is excellently narrated. I’m picky as an audiobook listener, especially for fiction, but it was really well done and the quality of the narration improved the “reading” experience. I’m a visual reader, and when listening to books I often get impatient because I could read it faster myself and I want to know what comes next. This one was engaging, but I was able to enjoy it in a more relaxed way. The writing is lovely in and of itself, and the narrator really lets that come through, as well as the dry sense of humor. If you like the audio format at all, I definitely recommend it for this one.

  • Nancy Wilbur says:

    I read The Guernsey Litersy and Potato Peel Society and loved it! I love historical fiction and this book is based on World War II England life. I hope you find as much enjoyment with this book as I did.

  • Carol says:

    I’m currently reading Preach to Yourself as I’ve been working on reducing my negative self-talk. Great book! I have a few of the other books on my TBR – Becoming Mrs. Lewis, Everybody Always, and Come Matter Here. I’ll be interested to read your reviews!

  • Candice Robertson says:

    Secret Daughter Is a Favorite of Mine! I bought it on a whim a few years ago and could NOT put it down. It’s a book i read at least once a year!

  • Courtney says:

    I’ve read Austen Escape and it was very good! I love all of Katherine Reay’s books (my favorite is still Dear Mr. Knightley)!

  • Kathryn Egly says:

    You’ll Love Everybody Always if you loved LOVE DOES! Seriously 5 out of 5!

    I reviewed that one and the 39 other books I read here:

  • Amy says:

    We were given A Severe Mercy at a marriage retreat several years ago. The couple that ran the retreat said that they read the book out loud together, each taking turns reading, which could be pretty meaningful. The summary of it on Amazon is pretty accurate. It is a favorite of mine, but sad. One neat thing that I didn’t realize when I first began it was that the author and C.S. Lewis became friends, and included in the book are a lot of letters they wrote to each other. It was neat to get to know Lewis from that point of view. I’ve heard good things about Becoming Mrs. Lewis, and I’d like to read that one some time. Something to consider, some of the letters towards the end of A Severe Mercy were written around the time Lewis got married to the end of his life.

    By the way, I really enjoy listening to your podcast! Your one from this past Tuesday – thank you for sharing, it really spoke to my heart.

  • Sarah P says:

    I started Only Love Today just after Christmas. I am using it as a daily small read and enjoying trying to use the take aways each day to get the most out of the book.

  • Marty Svoboda says:

    Read “Before We Were Yours” first. Personally I wouldn’t waste my time on “The Guernsey Literary Society….”

  • Charlene says:

    I enjoyed Gentleman in Moscow, but did it audio. I started it, but didn’t really pay attention and had to start it over. Once I really listened, I enjoyed it. I also liked Beneath the Scarlet sky and Guernsey. Both take place during WWII. Before we were Yours was a tough one, but good. I want to read Becoming Mrs Lewis and Austen Escape.

  • Risha says:

    Wow, I did not know that Ted Dekker’s daughter, Rachelle, had published a novel! I’ve been a fan of Ted’s for at least 15 years, so I will definitely have to check her book out.

  • Sarah D. says:

    The Austen Escape was a big disappointment for me. I had to make myself finish reading it, and that doesn’t happen very often.

  • Ani says:

    I’m reading Everybody Always after just finishing Love Does and loved/loving them both. I really want to read Brave Love as well this year. Quite a few on your list have caught my eye….

  • Carla says:

    #43 is such a good book. I got it for my bday which is right after Christmas, so I didn’t have much time to read it until recently, The author has an online book study going on now for a few weeks.

  • Amanda says:

    I am working on Book Girl right now and really enjoying it!

  • Laura says:

    A Severe Mercy is a profound book that has stayed with me for over 10 years now. A group of friends and I all read it when we were in our 30s and soon had A Severe Mercy cult. Haha. Not really, but there were people who avoided us at parties because we couldn’t talk about anything else. Hope you find it as deeply moving and that it resonates with you the way it did with all of us.

  • Jodi says:

    I really want to read the Lysa TerKeust book, it sounds so good. I just heard her on the Jamie Ivey podcast this morning.

  • Daring to Hope is ssoooo good! I recommend starting there!

  • Delores H. says:

    A Severe Mercy is incredible! I look forward to your thoughts on it! Both my husband and I read it, and we both cried.

  • Sarah says:

    If you have read anything on the topic of codependency or people pleasing, or you benefited from Keller’s “Counterfeit God’s,” then “When People are Big and God is Small” will be an excellent “counseling session.” I adored it because it felt like someone speaking to specific situations and weaknesses/temptations in my life, all from a Gospel-centered POV. If anyone wants to love God and people more, read it!

  • Jeanette Pham says:

    I have always struggled with Goodreads, I’m not sure why!! I keep a list of books that I have read each year by making an Amazon list with comments about my thoughts on those books. It’s simple enough for me to master! :). However, I was hoping you would also be posting a blog post on your monthly book reviews on your site for us non-Goodreads folks.

    • Yes! Just to clarify: The monthly book review post I mentioned is something I’ll be posting here on the blog. I’m only using GoodReads to track what I read. So you won’t be missing out on anything! It’s just for people who want to see what I’m currently reading and/or who want to see a list of all the books I’ve read.

  • Susan says:

    How to Walk Away is SOOO good as is Before we were Yours!

  • Kim says:

    I am reading Beneath A Scarket Sky now and it’s a captivating book! I love this WW1 genre and the characters are wonderful!

  • It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way is one of my favorite books ever. I kept renewing it from my library until I couldn’t anymore and had to return it. I took so many notes on it and couldn’t stop talking about it. Lysa is amazing.

  • Katie says:

    Excited to see you’re reading Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors by Jami Amerine! A great, grace-filled, funny, and touching read.

  • Denise says:

    The Lisa Wingate is very good. I love all of her books!

  • Kim Spradlin says:

    Love love love Goodreads! It has helped me master my “want to read” list, keep track of whether I have read something, and gives me recommendations of titles I would like to read based on my ratings. The only thing I don’t love about it is that it lets people rate books that haven’t even been released yet (and you know that most of them did not actually get a preview copy) so it skews the ratings. And I agree with you about Guernsey – I have read it three times now and it’s always the first book I recommend to any woman who asks. I even had a hard time getting into it the first time because of the format (written in all letters for those who haven’t read it) but it totally won me over. And the movie was good but could in no way go into the same character depth as the book does!

  • Angela says:

    My life is so full, adoption of our youngest four! AND I’m an older mom! I don’t have time to read a lot of books and so they have to really grab me, make me laugh make me cry. I highly recommend Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors by Jami Alverine and her first book, Stolen Jesus.

  • Kristy Rainwater says:

    I totally loved Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors! Such a renewing message! ❤️

  • Bobbi says:

    I loved Sacred Ground Sticky Floors! Jami Amerine’s book is raw and real. It is encouraging and affirming. I highly recommend it!

  • Hannah says:

    Becoming Mrs. Lewis and Daring to Hope we’re both highly enjoyable/thought-provoking reads! I am 3/4 of the way through Parenting and have found it to be excellent….though challenging and convicting. It is one I have slowly read over several months, trying to soak it in and also found myself jotting notes in my journal as I went. Looking forward your reviews!

  • Monica says:

    It’s Not Supposed to be this Way is an excellent read. I read it in December with two girlfriends and we met three times in person to discuss it. Now I am re reading it again with Proverbs 31 Minisries and their on line study. Everyone can relate in some way as we all experience times when we feel this way. I also highly recommend Before We Were Yours- a challenging read as it is so sad but very thought provoking.

  • Rachael says:

    Read Sacred Ground Sticky Floors!!! Awesome book! Once you start you can’t put it down. It’s like Jami is right there in her southern drawl sharing coffee and stories of her kids and Jesus!

  • Donna says:

    Sacred Grounds, Sticky Floors….trust me….this one should be first…..

  • Sherry says:

    I LOVED Beneath a Scarlet Sky!!! Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!!!

  • Suzann Smith says:

    You can’t go wrong with Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors. Terrific book. Laughter and encouragement and love and Jesus. All the good stuff.

  • Joy says:

    Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors gets my vote! Love Jami Ameren.

  • Kaethe says:

    I love everything by Laura Vandekam and definitely recommend “Off the Clock”. She would make a great guest for your podcast!

  • Laurie Barton says:

    I love this idea, and I’m going to steal it. I have piles of unread books. But, what will you do when you hear about new wonderful books this year?!?!

  • Sarah Wright says:

    I also second the Laura Vanderkam’s “Off the Clock” as a good one to read first. Loved it! Also, if you enjoyed “Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society,” you should check out “The Last Christmas in Paris.” It is another romance told through letters. This one is set during WWI, and I learned a lot about the war that I hadn’t before!

  • Patricia Lipscomb says:

    I loved Sacred Ground Sticky Floors! I have no hesitation in recommending it! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

  • Jennifer says:

    Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors!!!! You won’t be sorry!! Such a great book!!

  • Chelsea says:

    “A Gentleman in Moscow” is one of my favorite books. Beautifully written.

  • AMY says:

    If you haven’t decided what order to read them in, I do highly recommend Lisa Wingate’s book but you should read Becoming Mrs. Lewis first. I had no knowledge of CS Lewis’ wife and I found this story so utterly fascinating. I devoured the book in 2 days and want to read some of Mrs. Lewis’ work and go back and read more of CS Lewis’ work from when he had met her/married her and see how she influenced him. BTW – I got my husband the Excellence book you recommended and he read it and now I’m reading it. I’m finding it very interesting. Great concept of actually reading books you have at home. I plan to do that one day -Happy Reading

  • I’ve read a few of these and highly recommend two. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Oeel Pie Society was a beautiful story. Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors is honest and funny. It’s a great read.

  • Kiran says:

    Beneath a Scarlet Sky and Before We Were Yours were so good!! They both dealt with tough subject matter but the stories were so engaging and well written. Beneath a Scarlet Sky will keep you on the edge of your seat.

  • Leslie says:

    You have got to read Sacred Ground Sticky Floors by Jami Amerine. My absolute favourite book this year!! Funny, so inspirational, well written with a little sense of humour along the way shining a light the trials of daily life. It for sure is a must read. This book is life changing!!

  • Jayne says:

    The Ministry of Ordinary Places is an amazing book! If you haven’t read her earlier book Falling Free, I recommend that one, too.

  • You will love Jami Amerine’s book, “Sacred Ground Sticky Floors”- it’s such a nourishing and encouraging read!

  • Nicole says:

    From following you the last few years, I think you will enjoy Parenting. It gets a little redundant at the end, but the first few chapters really shook me. It addresses what our mission REALLY is as parents and also the concept of grace filled parenting.

  • Bethany Bergen says:

    I LOVED “Everybody Always” audiobook- Bob Goff’s voice made me smile every day that I listened:)! Enjoy!

  • Rebecca says:

    Definitely start with Jami Amerine’s book Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors!!

  • I’ve read a lot of these and I recommend Off the Clock to start with–it will help you feel like you have the leisure to read the rest.

    I reviewed it last year and it’s fundamental to so much else for anyone who has a busy life.

  • Heather Wood says:

    I love Daring to Hope.
    I didn’t know Katharine Reay had a new book out! I’ll have to check my library!

  • I hope you love Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society! It’s one of my favorites!
    I have Everybody Always and Dare to Lead on my list for this year, too! Thanks for sharing your book choices 🙂

  • Jacqueline says:

    The Guernsey Literary Society was so good. I love books written in the format letter writing, its a lost art. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. You will probably be able to read it in one day under a blanket on a cold day, or on a beach on a hot day. Netflix made a movie based on the book that stayed true to the book! Your girls might enjoy it too. Enjoy it!

  • Kelly says:

    I love Shannan Martin’s books! I think I am probably the only person on the planet to say this, but I tried and tried to get into A Gentleman in Moscow but I just couldn’t. I finally gave up.

  • BetsyD says:

    I love your list and the variety is great!! The Guernsy Literary is wonderful! I agree with other commenters that the format is different and wonderful! Ed Welch’s book on When People are Big, God is Small is excellent. You will be greatly challenged and benefited from this book. I use it all the time in speaking with young women in my small group. So helpful. The same is true with Tripp’s Parenting book. Happy reading!

  • Christy says:

    From your list, I have read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way and The Ministry of Ordinary Places. I too loved the letter style of writing in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society and I really enjoyed the story! I think there is now a movie on Netflix but I haven’t seen it yet.

    I really enjoyed The Ministry of Ordinary Places. I just love how Shannan Martin and her family are sharing Jesus in unconventional ways and it expanded my thinking on hospitality.

    I have just recently finished reading It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way and am doing the online Bible study that goes along with this book at Proverbs 31 ministries. It is so helpful (and gives hope) for people whose lives don’t look the way they thought they would look (and I think that affects us all in one way or another throughout our lifetime). I am doing the 2019 Reading Challenge on Goodreads this year too! I have set a goal of 25 and have read 5. I’m hoping to read more than 25 books, but I thought that was a good, doable goal for me to start with.

    I’m excited to follow what you’re reading. I always enjoy your reviews on what you’ve read.

  • Del says:

    You need to move Parenting by Tripp up on your list (if the #’s equal reading order). It’s a great book filled with so much truth and grace. I wish he would have written it a long time ago!

    • The numbers don’t equal reading order… my apologies if that was confusing! I just numbered them, but I’ll be reading them in whatever order I’m inspired to read them! 🙂

      I’ve heard that was a great book and am looking forward to reading it!

  • Christy says:

    Thanks! I’m in the empty nest season of life so my evenings are usually free for reading.

  • Stephanie says:

    Parenting by Paul Tripp is amazing. Such good perspective. Can’t wait to check out the other books you picked!

  • Sheryl says:

    I’m excited how many of those are available in Scribd! Thank you.

  • Brooke says:

    A Gentleman in Moscow was awesome. I hope you enjoy it 🙂

  • Christina Allen says:

    #35!!! So good.

  • Pamela Marks says:

    How to walk away was a good book it read well and quickly.

  • Severe Mercy is amazing–it has held up well. Becoming Mrs Lewis was good. Tgurst is on my list and I’ve now added a few otgers–thanks!

  • Ashley says:

    Sacred Ground Sticky Floors!! Absolutely Amazing. It is a must read!

  • Sue Beth Jolly says:

    I loved Sacred Ground Sticky Floors! very inspiring with some hilarious stories that will make you laugh out loud!

  • Katrina says:

    I really enjoy hearing what books you are reading! I’m also super impressed by how much reading you seem to fit into your daily life. 🙂 I love to read, but have a thing for Amish fiction stories! 🙂 But, for many years I’ve known it’s important to read all sorts of books and not only get lost in the Dutch farmlands! I spend a ton of time outside with my pup walking or running and have always listened to music…but I’ve really started to love listening to audio books now and have started using the Libby app, and listening to a lot of the books you are recommending. THANKS! I’m listening to How To Walk Away and it’s interesting for sure – but I’m with you..I agree she’s missing that faith aspect. But it’s sure interesting! THANKS for the suggestion!

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