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A Peek Into My Life This Past Week (+ win a stack of books from me!)

Welcome to my weekly Sunday post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.

What I’m Loving

I got to have peanut butter toast for the first time in half a year this week, so of course I had to take a photo!!! I may have been just a wee bit excited that my nutritionist put this on my eating plan this week!

I’m loving getting to add new foods back into my diet and getting to eat a much more varied diet — while still feeling great!

I’m also loving Instastories. I started trying it out two weeks ago and am just loving it!

If you have ever wanted to see a peek behind-the-scenes into our every day, I’d love for you to follow me over on Instagram. And then look at the top of the page when you have your app opened for my icon. Click on that to see the “stories” I post throughout the day. I’ve been sharing snippets from every day life, cleaning and organizing projects I’m tackling, outfits of the day, and much more! I’d love for you to join me there!

I also adored this beautiful video. If you need a pick me up today, be sure to watch it.

What I’m Celebrating

23 years ago this week, Jesse had his second brain tumor surgery. Because the tumor had grown back again.

He shouldn’t be alive today.

He survived being born as a 27-week-old preemie, his parents’ divorce, his mom’s death, and two brain surgeries.

This week, we celebrated the incredible goodness of God in allowing him to be brain-tumor-free for 23 years!! I never want to take his life for granted. I never want to forget to say “thank you” and “I love you” and to show my love and gratitude in little ways and big ways in the everyday-ness of life.

Earlier this week, I came home from Bible study and lunch with a friend to find him cleaning the kitchen and loading the dishwasher. Something he often does, just because he knows that a clean kitchen makes me so happy!

Simple things, but profound things. Not only because they show so much love to me, but because the doctors never would have expected him to get to experience these simple moments of life.

I don’t ever want to take it for granted. Every day is a gift.

What I’m Laughing About

Silas came down with a low grade fever on Thursday. I wanted to make him something special to eat. He requested mac & cheese, but then quickly asked, “Do you know how to make mac & cheese?”

The question made me laugh because he’s been our resident mac & cheese maker for the past few years so he doesn’t remember that I used to make it all. the. time!!

I assured him that I could, indeed, handle making mac & cheese. However, he wasn’t completely convinced so he said that, just in case I wasn’t sure, he would go over the details with me.

He then proceeded to take me to the kitchen, get out all of the items I’d need to make it, and go over every single detail of the recipe three times… I guess in case I didn’t get it the first or second time! 😉

When he noticed we were almost out of milk, I said, “Oh don’t worry, honey, I can just use half & half!” He gave me a horrified look and said, “Oh no! You can’t do that! It calls for 2% milk!”

Oh child of mine, if you only knew how your mother cooks and how she substitutes things, rarely measures ingredients, and changes things around in almost every recipe!! She firmly believes that recipes were created as guidelines to be creative from not strict rules to be followed to a tee. 😉

(Or maybe he does know this about me and thus the reason he gave me incredibly detailed instructions for making mac & cheese three times!)

I’ve also laughed over many of the comments posted last week here. If you need a laugh today, be sure to go read some of them!

What I’m Reading

I feel like I have not been doing a good job getting through the books I’ve been hoping to get through recently. But I have been reading a little bit every day. This week, my goal is to make reading for longer than a few minutes at a time my goal.

Because I’m itching to dive into a fiction book with a great storyline — but I’m the kind of person who only likes to read fiction if I have time to read at least 30 minutes to a few hours at a time! 🙂

I did finish three shorter books on the treadmill this week: The One Minute Cure, The Virtual Assistant Solution, and Travel With Kids (which made me super antsy to plan more trips this year with our kids and I started working on our South Africa trip dates as a result!).

This week, I’m reading: Thou Givest, They Gather (an old Christian reprint), No More Faking Fine (a spiritually encouraging book), and Chasing Slow (a book on life improvement). And I’m wanting to read one fiction book — I just haven’t decided on which one I want to read yet. (Leave a comment and give me your best fiction recommendations!)

I’m hoping to finish No More Faking FineChasing Slow, and one fiction book this week. I’ll let you know how that goes next week! {See my Reading Goals for 2017. Also, see the 24 books I’ve read so far in 2017 here.}

I also loved reading these articles this week:

What I’m Watching

I loved this video of my brother and his friend playing the trumpet and the piano at the same time!

We watched two very interesting shows this week JFK: The Lost Bullet (we watched it on Sling, but the full show is available on YouTube here) and Killing Reagan.

I also started watching Victoria after hearing RAVE reviews of it from a number of people. But sadly, I only got about 15 minutes into it (I was watching it on the treadmill and my time was up!), but I’m hoping to watch at least a few episodes this week. We’ll see. Have you watched it? (You can watch full episodes on Simply June.)

What I’m Listening To

This week, I did get quite a bit of listening in and especially loved the following:

And I was honored to be interviewed on the HeyLove podcast with my friend Karthi Masters. In this podcast, I share more of my personal faith journey, how I broke free of the lies of legalism I was entrenched in in my early marriage, the two women who have influenced my life the most, how I deal with negative comments, and more. You can listen to the podcast here.

Note: This podcast was recorded a number of months ago, so some of the things I mention on it — like drinking coffee! — are now outdated. Because you all know I up and gave up coffee like the crazy woman that I am! 🙂

What I’m Learning

I used to have visions of hot breakfasts like cinnamon rolls and scrambled eggs or pancakes and bacon while we all sat around a beautifully set table and read the Bible together every morning.

I’d feel frustrated when my big plans and dreams got thwarted yet again by a baby who didn’t sleep at night, a toddler who was really needy, or children who were “interrupting” my plans.

You guys. Do you realize how crazytown that thinking is?? These kids are not interruptions; they are my LIFE, my calling… and investing in them and being available to them is WAY more important than a hot breakfast or a beautifully set table!

So I’ve changed my perspective a lot the past few years and stopped beating myself up over how I thought it was “supposed” to look and instead embraced what it really looks like… Usually cereal or toast. Maybe eggs or oatmeal some days. Mismatched plates and bowls. Lots of talking. Kids who need oversight and encouragement. On most days, at least 5-10 minutes to stop and read a few verses and point their hearts to the Gospel.

But mostly, just allowing the hour around breakfast time to be devoted to loving them, pouring into them, being available to them, and letting go of perfect!

What’s On My Heart

I want to share something personal with those of you parents who have ever felt like, “My child is the only one who doesn’t know how to __________.”

Silas knows all of his addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts and can remember just about every stat related to every sports team he follows. But he has struggled in many other areas.

He just learned how to read and tie his shoes this year. (He’s 7.) And he’s still working hard at learning to ride his bike without training wheels.

As the years have gone by and he’s stayed “behind” what is considered the “normal age” for learning these skills and been way behind where his sisters were, I’ve battled a range of emotions as a mom.

Some days, I’ve wondered if it’s my fault and have heaped on the mom guilt and stressed about needing to figure out some solution ASAP to help him pick up these skills.

Other days, I’ve tried to explain to yet another well-meaning person who has said something about him not knowing a certain skill, “Yes, but he can do this and that and this and that!” Like, I need to prove that my child really is smart and that I’m not a terrible parent.

But most days, I’m just good with it. I know that he will learn in his time and I don’t need to push him too hard just for the sake of what other people think. Because every child is different.

And it’s also given me a much more compassionate spirit for other moms who are struggling with similar situations.

Moms of children who are “behind”, know this: you are not alone. Your child has amazing gifts and skills. And maybe not everyone can see them like you do, but they are there.

Hold on, don’t stress — and don’t beat yourself up if your child is the only one in your friend group who isn’t potty-trained, or sleeping through the night, or reading, or excelling at school.

Keep loving your child well and being the best mom you know how to be. No one will ever love your child like you do. It’s going to be okay. {I took this photo earlier this week while Jesse was patiently demonstrating to Silas — yet again — how to ride a bike.}

In Case You Missed It

My Posts From This Past Week:

My YouTube Videos From This Past Week:

Want to win this stack of books?

I thought it would be fun for me to do a giveaway here every once in awhile on Sundays — giving away some of our our products, items I’ve been sent two of, books I’ve already read and want to pass on, or other items I have that we no longer need and would like to pass onto a great home!

Today’s stack includes an old copy of Trim Healthy Mama, an issue of The Magnolia Journal, a used copy of Bread & Wine, one of Jesse’s Gratitude journals, a blank journal, a read aloud we loved together as a family, a coloring sticker book, plus two books I was sent by authors that I wanted to pass on!

To win this stack this week, leave a comment telling me about your favorite fiction book or give me a recommendation for a fiction book you think I’d love to read!

I’ll choose one winner from all of the comments and will email that winner personally + post the winner next week on my Peek Into My Life This Week Post.

Congratulations to Jaimie (jaimie.ramsey@) who was the winner of last week’s stack of books giveaway. Jaimie, you should have received an email from me asking for your mailing address!

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  • Beth Anne says:

    Love getting a glimpse inside your week! And that is incredible about celebrating Jesse’s 23rd year of being brain tumor free. WOW!

    Your encouragement to other Mamas was spot-on too. I often find myself feeling the pressure to help Holden excel in certain areas because his disability makes other parts of his life and childhood feel so difficult. I’m learning to praise his strengths, be patient with the struggles, and never base my worth as a mom on what milestone he’s meeting.

    P.S. I finally figured out how to actually create an Instastory this week when Victoria was here in person and showed me how! I can wrap my brain around statistics and Power Editor but sometimes tapping buttons on my phone is a big challenge!

  • Ana says:

    Thanks for posting a link to my friend Lora Lynn Fanning’s interview (Fanning, not Flanning).

    My favorite historical fiction is by Jane Kirkpatrick and Elizabeth Musser.

  • Sarah says:

    The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah is an amazing novel that I recently read!

  • Morgan Essley says:

    I too was worried about my son and learning to ride his bike, because he was “falling behind.” I had my excuses for why he wasn’t doing it and they were valid but mostly I felt the need to justify why he couldn’t.

    Well, we had an usually warm February and he wanted his training wheels off, the first time he has ever asked for it. Within minutes he was zooming down the road.

    Life speeds by when you least expect it and the big things so quickly become a non-factor. I am happy he can get out and enjoy riding his bike and I can feel the joy radiating out of him after he has mastered it, I am just a little bummed the cold weather has returned making it hard to ride bikes now!

  • Holly says:

    I am reading Unbroken and Stealing Secrets, which is short stories about women spies in the Civil War.

  • Lorrie says:

    Thank you for sharing. Your bit about Silas really touched my heart. I homeschooled our two.

    Our son struggled with reading and all language arts. He didn’t read well until he was 11. Well now he’s 24. Served our country for 3 1/2 years in the Army and did very well there. He’s now back in college and thriving there. He’s older, wiser, more mature and really enjoying college. He is one wonderful man Praise God!

    Our daughter had difficulty with her speech. She talked a mile a minute but not many could understand her until she was about five. She is now a straight a student in her senior year of college and is an amazing young woman. God is so good.

    It is hard when we, or others, compare our children but we must all remember that each of them is a unique and beautiful gift from God. They all have beautiful talents and gifts. God does not make mistakes!

  • Anna says:

    I once read an article on how to teach your child to ride a bicycle in one day. It stated to find an easy gentle grassy slope in a park or somewhere safe, and with a bicycle helmet on, allow your child to coast down on their bicycle without pedaling. After trying this a few times, it worked! It seemed our kids found their balance, and if they fell they fell on the soft grass!

  • denise says:

    Love these posts. Katie Ganshert has a new book coming out in April called Life After. I got to read an advanced copy and it was beyond amazing so you have to add it to your fiction tbr list!

  • Amber says:

    What a beautiful family!

    This might help, put the training wheels back on. Bend them up so he’s having to learn to balance but still knows their there if he starts to fall the training wheels will catch him. The more confident he’s get the more you bend them up till all of a sudden he’s not using them..

    That’s how we did it with 8 kids..

  • Katherine says:

    Victoria is such a fun show! If you’re looking for good fiction, the book Victoria by Daisy Goodwin is an easy read. She’s actually the one who wrote the screenplays for the tv show, and the book covers the first couple episodes.

    I read it before the show started, so I was curious how it would match up, but they actually go together pretty well! Not like some book-to-screen processes that totally butcher the book in the process. But I’m sure that has to do with it being the same writer.

  • Lindsey says:

    I love all the books I have read by Jody Hedlund. She writes historical fiction. Two of my favorites are “Preacher’s Bride” and “Unending Devotion.”

  • Lisa says:

    My son also struggled with learning to ride without training wheels (he just turned ten and he’s only been riding without them for about 6 months). Incidentally, he found out some of his friends from school lived near by and they helped him learn! His desire to go out riding with friends was a huge motivation for him to keep working at it when nothing else worked.

  • Karyn Ashley-Smith says:

    Thanks for sharing your crazytown thoughts about kids being interruptions. I still take the tour through crazytown sometimes. Trying to lose that train ride. Loved hearing about your week! Super envious you have time to read ?

  • Nicole says:

    Great post! Just wondering if the title is right because I didn’t see where to enter for the free books? 😉

    • I had that part of the post added in but it somehow disappeared when I hit publish! So sorry about that. I just added the details back again and it should be showing up now! 🙂

  • Dana says:

    A fabulous fiction book I’d recommend is The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz. Historical fiction about a girl who runs away from home and works for a Jewish family in the early 1900s. I really think it’ll be up your alley!

    Also, do you have to be in the phone app to see Instastories? I couldn’t figure out how to get to them on my desktop.

  • Jennifer says:

    oh my gosh, how awesome that Jesse is 23 years brain tumor free!! My son Owen was diagnosed 3 months after his 3rd birthday, and passed away 3 months before his 5th birthday. We are grateful for every second we had with him, but 4 years is such a short time to be held here on earth.

    Also, I have a nearly 7 year old and 5 1/2 year old who don’t know how to tie their shoes. No worries! No one’s lifelong success is dependent on shoe tying!

    I know it’s not a new book, but I just read Big Little Lies and loved it! There is a miniseries based on the book that just started last week!

    Love your updates! Thanks so much for sharing them!

  • Nikki says:

    I also heard Kayla Aimee’s interview a couple weeks back. It came at just the right time too! I was having some trouble that morning with my oldest daughter’s behavior. I mean, she was being horribly disrespectful and rude, and I had to figure out how to deal with it. On my way to work that morning I felt myself asking God how I could see even this as a blessing, then I heard her interview. Yes, I am struggling with attitude problems in my kids (who hasn’t at least at one time or another), but at least I have the opportunity to do so. I am lucky because I get to help her learn to be more respectful, God gave me that opportunity. I found a blessing in a different way than I was looking for, but if you ask, God will always show you.

  • Sarah D. says:

    Where is the stack of books? Guessing this is from an older post title?

  • Robin says:

    I am currently reading Long days of small Things -Motherhood as a Spiritual Discipline by Catherine McNeil, just started it but loving how real and unapologetic about the non perfect parenting that happens.

  • Kathryn Egly says:

    Two great fiction books are “where’d you go Bernadette” and ‘redeeming love’ by Francine Rivers.

    I often feel like my kids are the only ones you can’t do something. One thing that comes to mind is when my son finished kindergarten last year I thought he was the only one in his class who couldn’t read yet and wondered if he had a learning disability. I got him some Bob books and we kept practicing and now, 9 months later, he is a great reader!

  • Stacey says:

    Crystal, I’ve been following your blog for several years and had no idea about your husband.
    6 months ago my now 3 year old had two brain surgeries to remove a cancerous brain tumor. It shocked us to our core. He underwent radiation treatments and his doing great now. He’ll be having an MRI soon to see if the tumor is growing back. We are of course praying that it isn’t.
    If you don’t mind sharing, (and I’ll totally understand if you don’t want to) does your husband do anything now to keep a check on it? MRI’s or anything? I’ve been so interested in the stories of people who’ve gone through this to see how they’re doing long term. THank you for sharing this with your readers. I’m rejoicing with you that your husband is tumor free!

    • For years, he had regular MRIs… eventually, the doctors said he had gone long enough without anything growing back, that he was told he could just pay close attention to headaches and other signs of it coming back and, if so, get another MRI. So far, he’s been very much in the clear! He’s very, very in tune with his health and goes to the doctor more than most people do just because we’d rather be safe than sorry!

      I can’t imagine going through that with a 3-year-old. My heart hurts for all that you’ve experienced as a mom. I’m so grateful that he’s doing well… but I know that the MRIs are so nerve-wracking! I just stopped and prayed for you.

  • Erin Yoder says:

    My favorite fiction book is “To Kill A Mockingbird” but I’m currently reading “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah and I can’t put it down. I can’t give a full recommendation yet because I haven’t finished it, but very good so far!

  • Need A Nap2 says:

    fiction – Finding Hope by Kathryn Cushman, Submerged by Dani Pettrey, Shadow of Your Smile by Susan May Warren (5th in a series but only really small spoilers if you haven’t read the others).

  • So crazy about the brain tumor! My father-in-law had one about 10 years ago and lost his eyesight in his right eye. However, if he hadn’t had that brain tumor and moved his family down from the mountains to Denver, I would have never met my husband! God is so good at using these things in ways to benefit us. ?

    Favorite fiction book of all time is actually a children’s series – the Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson.

  • Heather says:

    You’ve probably heard this a million times, but A Man Called Ove is wonderful! Actually all his book have been great. I ended up crying a few times during Ove because he is just real and I think we all need a little Ove in our life, which is crazy too because he has some real issues! Also, HIGHLY recommend The Orphan, The Widow and Me by JT Olson, but it is not fiction. It is a book that no Christian should miss and I think would resonate with you and the work you do in Africa. It is AMAZING, a quick read and very impactful!

  • Julie S says:

    My favorite fiction book at this point in my life is “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.” I’ve read it and listened to it multiple times, and I still fall in love with the characters and laugh aloud at the same parts. 🙂

    • Courtney Otto says:

      Hi Crystal! I’ve been following your blog for years and never commented but I couldn’t pass this one up. I have 2 girls and a boy similarly spaced apart in age like your 3. And my 3 have such similar personalities to your kids too! My girls were always a head of the game with all the milestones. Along came my son. He’s bright and like Silas is great at math but he’s a late bloomer in quite a bit else. He rode his bike and tied his shoes at age 8. But that was his timing and I’m glad in the end I let him work at his own pace. It was good for me to see him pick those things up in his timing as it helps me to rest knowing he’s own his own schedule and that is ok.
      Also I live historical fiction and Kate Morton is one of my favorite authors- The Forgotten garden. Also my favorite book all time is -Someone knows my name by Lawrence Hill. Lastly, I too love the Guernsey literary book! It’s amazing on audiobook- all the characters become your friend by the end! You’ll love it!

  • MB says:

    I loved the movie Hidden Figures, so I am reading the book!

  • April V says:

    The Road is a thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat!! 🙂

  • Abby says:

    I just finished Pride and Prejudice for the third time – I just love how I can catch more of the details and the wit each time I read it! I also read The Scarlet Pimpernel last month and thought it was a fun read!

  • Kimberly Fish says:

    I recently read Victoria by Daisy Goodwin and enjoyed it.

  • Mae says:

    The Status of All Things by Liz Fenton. It was a quick and fun read especially in our social media world.
    A lot of the books I have read are recommended by you which all have turned out to be good books. I love seeing what your reading.

  • Maureen says:

    What a fun stack of books! I’ve been thinking a lot lately about Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate, about a boy whose imaginary cat friend reappears when his family starts having serious money problems. Though written for kids, I thought it was lovely and thought provoking.

  • Micha says:

    Three of my favorite fiction books are Discovering Hope by Chautona Havig and the first two Doug and Carlie books by Lisa Smartt.

  • Nicki Bishop says:

    Hi Crystal,
    I have to confess, the Sunday posts are always my favorite. Books I’m loving? I just finished The Magnolia Story on audiobook, I’m currently reading Unblemished (a fun, Christian fairytale inspired YA) by Sara Ella. On my TBR e-stack is Hope in Cripple Creek by Sara Turnquist, Precious in His Sight by Karen Pashley (both TN authors). I also want to read the new Kristy Cambron and Beth Moore’s novel (just curious). ?

  • Nancy says:

    I really enjoyed the audio version of A Man Called Ove. Recommend.

    You offer great parenting insight. Our daughter was completely normal but didn’t walk until 18 months. Fortunately, we were surrounded by very relaxed sorts who all knew she would walk in her own time. That was so nice. You probably aren’t looking for advice about bikes, but in case you are interested, you may wish to consider having Silas try a balance bike and/or a scooter for a while.

  • Jessi says:

    I am loving the Sunday night recaps! It may sound crazy, but it can sometimes seem like “catching up with an old friend.” I guess that goes to show how much enjoy the posts on IG(and emails), as I do not have FB. I love how your post are so true to real life rather than “trying to keep up with Jones.” Thank you for that.
    Anyways, a fiction book I really loved was “Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald” Although fiction, the author did do a lot of research on her. It was a little difficult to get into, but once I did, I couldn’t put it down.
    Thanks again!

  • Elizabeth says:

    Right now I’m reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series by Stieg Larsson and I’m hooked. It’s a fast-paced crime thriller series translated from Swedish. (As a heads up, it’s probably not the cup of tea for all Christians because there is violence, swearing, and sexual content.)

  • Shannon H says:

    I am a HUGE Janette Oke fan!!! This past week, I finally read “When Calls the Heart.” I HIGHLY recommend it, for a good, historical, clean, Christian read!

  • Stephanie says:

    I also enjoyed A Man Called Ove as well as The Nightingale. And have you read A Light Between Oceans? That was a favorite from last year. I’m loving these Sunday night posts as well! As a long time follower, I really, really like how you’ve refocused your blog!

  • lynn m. says:

    I think my reading is vastly different than yours 🙂 Not fiction, but I love all the books by Andy Cohen about his job and such with Bravo.

  • Debbie says:

    I’m not much on fiction books, but I have always loved Wuthering Heights.

  • Carol says:

    Anna at has written that her son took a long time to learn how to read yet now he is a college graduate in graduate school. You are in good company.

  • Arianna says:

    One of my favorite fiction books is ” Hotel on the corner of bitter and sweet”, a beautiful story of enduring friendship and love between two children at the time of the Japanese internment camps in this country. I highly recommend it!

  • Siobhan says:

    I’ve seen it a few times in the comments, but I second (or third?) A Man Called Ove. I listened to the audiobook last week. I finished it in the parking lot of the grocery store, because I couldn’t go in until I finished it!

  • Rhonda says:

    I love to read and some of my favorite books have been young adult books I read with my children. Two that stand out are “Naya Nuki” by Kim Thomasma and “A Single Shard” by Linda Sue Park. Both are about perseverance thru difficult situations and were encouraging to my daughter who often felt “behind” due to her learning disabilities.

  • Rhonda B, says:

    I love to read and some of my favorite books have been young adult books I read with my children. Two that stand out are “Naya Nuki” by Kim Thomasma and “A Single Shard” by Linda Sue Park. Both are about perseverance thru difficult situations and were encouraging to my daughter who often felt “behind” due to her learning disabilities.

  • Melissa says:

    The first one that popped into my head was Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austin.

  • Emily nielsen says:

    I am reading the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society now! It’s interesting…hoping I like it!

  • Sheri says:

    Loved “The Kitchen Boy” , “Outlander” and “Life of Pi”. I enjoy reading your weekly posts reminding us all we are doing the best we can and everyone learns at their own pace.

  • Missy says:

    I love so many books, but one of my very favorites is actually 2 books: Her Mother’s Hope and it’s sequal: Her Daughter’s dream. By Francine Rivers.

  • Wendy says:

    “Wonder” is not necessarily light hearted, but a good read for tweens and adults.

  • Morgan Voorhis says:

    I really love Julie Klassen and Lauren Willig as authors. I happen to be a sucker for historical fiction. I would recommend something by Klassen (maybe do a quick search at your local library to see what ebooks they have)–you really can’t go wrong with anything she’s written!

  • Annette says:

    Have you read The Shack? It’s an amazing book that has just been made into a movie. I highly recommend it and think you would enjoy it.

  • Katie k says:

    My favorite recent fiction novel was the Girl on the Train! Thanks for the chance to win!

  • Stephanie S says:

    I’m not sure I can name an all time favorite, but I love the Stephanie Plum novels by Janet Evanovich as audio books. I just finished the 21st and they’re a great, funny, distraction to stressful days.

  • Annette says:

    Have you read The Shack? It’s an amazing story. I think you would enjoy it. It has recently been made into a movie.

  • Sophie Piper says:

    Right now my book club is reading Christy. It was my turn to pick and it’s an all time favorite of mine. I also really like Catherine Marshall’s other book, Julie, if you haven’t read that one!

    Love your stack of books! Gives me ideas on what to add to my reading list.

  • Desirae says:

    Saving Sailor by Renee Rivas is a great fiction book. Also When Mountains Move by Julie Cantrell

  • Rebecca says:

    I am currently reading The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

  • Mandy says:

    I love the Goose Girl series. I also really enjoyed Austenland and A Book of a thousand days.

  • Karla says:

    Historical fiction…The Nightingale. Not sure if you read it, but it’s one of my favorites.

  • TN says:

    Really loved and appreciated this post ???

  • Sylvia says:

    I loved All the Light We Cannot See.

  • Susie says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I too have a child that is behind & your words of wisdom really were a gift to me tonight. Thank you for your transparency! Blessings to you & you family.

  • Elizabeth H. says:

    I used to love reading The Christy Miller series as a teenager and I just discovered they have books of when she is an adult….

  • Amanda says:

    I love ‘The One and Only’ by Emily Giffin. I’ve read it three times!

  • Kori Lewis says:

    I love Jodi Piccoult books, and the last one I read was The Storyteller. It did not disappoint.

  • Molly says:

    I have not read many books lately – cookbooks are my favorite though!

  • Emily Harlan says:

    White Oleander was one of my favorites a few years ago. I don’t read much anymore. I am trying to figure out how to read more. I posted to podcasts more than anything. My favorite podcast are The Chalene Show! And Build your Tribe.

  • Shu-Hsin Bredthauer says:

    Hi crystal! I have really enjoyed all the “peek into my life” posts. I took on reading a crazy long book over Christmas – Anna karenina. I am just slowly chugging it through, and I think it’ll probably take me a year or more to slowly go through the book. I’ve decided to call 2017 “my year with Anna Karenina.” I don’t know if I would recommend this book to you though for your quest for fiction.

    However, if I have to pick my favorite fiction at the moment, it would have to be Anne of green gables. It seems like a silly and childish choice, but I just enjoyed reading all the wild imaginations of Anne and her stories… you probably have read it already, but that’s my favorite. 🙂

  • Susan says:

    I loved the Christy miller series

  • Meghan says:

    Not a recommendation for you since you recommended it 🙂 but I really enjoyed Dear Mr. Nightly.

  • Katherine De Graaf says:

    One of my long-time favorites is “The Atonement Child” by Francine Rivers. In more recent years, I really enjoyed “Dear Mr. Knightly,” which I read after your suggestion.

  • Eva says:

    Good evening/morning, I love mystery, suspense, and romantic suspense, Christian fiction, I don’t have a”favorite”fiction book, but I can recommend some, a dog’s purpose, non fiction, miracles from heaven, anything by Terri Blackstone, or Irene hannon

  • Katy Moss says:

    Currently reading The Red Keep (Allen French) and A Chance to Die: the Life and Legacy of Amy Carmichael (Elisabeth Elliott).

    And thank you for the encouragement that I don’t have the only 3.5 year old who isn’t potty trained. 🙂

  • Jennifer says:

    There are several in that stack I really want to read! THM and Bread and Wine particularly, plus I always love new journals!
    As for recommendations, I’m actually trying to read more nonfiction this year, because I too am the type who needs a few hours at a time for fiction. Or maybe I should say, I WILL take a few hours at a time, too bad for washing dishes or going to bed! But I regret it later. So, I’ve only read a few fiction books so far this year, and none stood out.

  • Elizabeth says:

    Just wanted to say our 3rd child was never able to master the bike! But…BUT she can skate, roller blade, VERY well…go figure…I could ride a bike but NEVER ever come close to being able to skate…so for some reason, some parts of balance must be in the brain, while others are not…maybe get him some roller blades soon (she used to use some of her ski poles for balance at first…worked very well)…if he has not already mastered that. Our 3rd child was plagued with sinus and respiratory issues, ear infections, etc to and excess…it does seem to have an effect. Maybe someone could get a bicycle made for 2 also…my dad made one of those and we used to have a lot of fun with that…but it is the guy up front who controls how well one stays balanced…heh! I had a brother who mastered EVERY single thing he ever touched, including a unicycle…yep, could go forwards and backwards etc…the rest of us? Nope. We are all different…

  • Bethany M says:

    I bet you’d enjoy Bite of the Mango.

  • Anissa says:

    I have been enjoying books by Kate Morton recently. Just finished The Secret Keeper, but have liked the other three I have read by her also.

  • Katherine says:

    Hands down the best fiction I’ve read in years is The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.

  • Miah says:

    Kathy Herman has some great Christian mystery books. And they’re not always predictable! Those are my favorite fiction books right now.

  • Jennifer A W says:

    This is a fiction book based off a real life story. “The Devil in Pew Number Seven”. (This is probably as fiction as I get anymore. I used to read a lot of fiction in elementary through college, but now I just can’t get into it.)

  • Cayla Laughman says:

    It’s been forever since I’ve read fiction, but I’m a huge fan of almost anything Ted Dekker writes. Very suspenseful books! Not a fiction book, but an AMAZING read is Stephanie Fast’s ‘She Is Mine’. So good!

  • Beth says:

    I recently finished All the Light We Cannot See—great WW2 historical fiction.

  • Melinda says:

    Have to say the Janette oke series Love Comes Softly. 30 years ago I got the box set for Christmas and I read 2 of the books in 2 days! I love them!! She is a terrific author and I love the subject matter!

  • Val in MN says:

    I work with elementary school aged children and there are 4th graders that do not know how to tie their shoes and have no inkling to learn!

    In a wonderful and supportive family as yours, Silas will get there without a doubt!

  • Jessica says:

    I was just looking through my Pinterest board of books I’ve read so far this year…and they’re not fiction, but rather memoirs, that I’ll recommend:
    ~Born a Crime by Trevor Noah – if you want a perspective on life under and after apartheid (contains some swear words)
    ~Until We All Come Home – the story of a woman’s journey to adopt a little boy from Ukraine

  • Amy says:

    The Nightingale! I just finished it a few days ago and am still thinking about it a lot. The novel follows two French sisters through WWII and shows the ups and downs of their emotions, relationships and struggles. Very realistic and a real page-turner.

  • Amy Jaskowiak says:

    This busy Mama hasn’t been able to read a fiction book in a while, but I LOVED “The Book of God”! It takes the great stories from the Bible, and rewrites them in the style of a Novel!

  • Wendy Clark says:

    There is no way I could recommend just one fiction book-I love to read so much. My favs are A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Rebecca, and I also love to read clean-cut cozy mysteries. I still love to read the Little House books also! I just love to read!!!

  • Cj Strong says:

    I would love that stack of books! But what I really want to say is that I have a 17-year-old who never learned to ride a bike. Ha-ha! It’s a big joke now. We know, though, that he’s be able too ; we just don’t own a bike. I’m sure Silas will learn how!

  • jeannie says:

    I know he’s a child author but Lois Lowry books have so much depth I really had enjoyed reading them as an adult.

  • Stephanie says:

    I enjoy anything by Dee Henderson ?

  • Jessica says:

    The best fiction will always be the Harry Potter series. I just got my mom to start reading them and I just love talking about each book after she is done!

  • Tracy says:

    About once a year I reread the Mitford Series by Jan Karon. Each chapter is like it’s own little story and it’s a comfort to read about a quaint small town full of quirky personalities!

  • Pamela Cole says:

    Loved this look into your life. I used to love to read but circumstances in my life have changed many things…including reading. But I am trying to get back into reading. A series I enjoyed a few years ago was “The Yada Yada Prayer Group.” It was different fiction read for me because most of my fiction reading was more towards older times or Amish stories. I throughly enjoyed the change.

  • Tammy Miller says:

    Any book by Terri Blackstock is a good one to read. I highly recomend them.

  • Melissa says:

    Fiction books are hard for me to suggest because like you I do not read them much. I prefer biographies and cookbooks. I can suggest a cookbook I am loving the Wellness Mama Cookbook

  • Susan Y says:

    I love the variety of fiction I see in all the comments…I think reading in general is awesome. I really have enjoyed all of Lisa Samson’s newer books (2007-current)…having read pretty much every Christian author growing up, I enjoy her real perspective on some tough issues in life.

  • Jennifer says:

    I love Savannah from Savannah series by Denise hildreth Jones. Sweet and southern what more could you ask for.

  • Karen Young says:

    I really enjoy the Mrs. Pollifax series by Dorothy Gilman. The first is The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax. It’s a delightful series about an older, retired lady who becomes a spy for the CIA. It has the mystery element while remaining lighthearted and funny.

    We have a trailer bike that attaches to the back of my husband’s bike. It seemed to really help my older kids learn to balance and ride. My five year old isn’t quite there yet. Perhaps something like that would help Silas?

  • Tatiana says:

    You have likely already read it – but I absolutely adore Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

  • MaryBeth says:

    I LOVE all of Jodi Picoult’s books!

  • Kimmie says:

    Fav book is “Dear Mr Knightly” thanks to you for the recommmendation! I’m reading “A Little Salty to cut the Sweet” by Sophie Hudson. It’s super good!

  • Heather says:

    Our youngest kiddo was the same with the bike. REI makes a video that was incredible! I highly recommend it. It took us months holding onto the back of her bike (and paying for it at the chiropractor) with no luck, but after using the techniques in this video, she was riding without training wheels within the hour.

  • Katie says:

    This is a YA book, but it’s profoundly good: The Thing About Jellyfish.

  • Lynsie says:

    Hi there! I’m somewhat new to your blog. I haven’t read any fiction lately but my favorite Christian living author is Angie Smith. I stumbled upon her book “I Will Carry You” after losing my 1-month old baby boy. God used her family’s story to help heal some of the pain from my loss.

  • Aimee says:

    Thank you so much for your post about children who are “behind”. I’m a homeschool mom of three children. My middle child is a 9 year old boy who has struggled with various things over the years. It has been hard at times but each of his victories is an encouragement for both of us to keep pressing on.

  • Reva says:

    I enjoy the Janette Oke books–Love Comes Softly

  • Gina says:

    I loved Joel Rosenberg’s “The Auschwitz Escape”!

    And thanks for what you shared about Silas, I have a 5th grader who is slowly becoming a better reader & it was a good reminder to focus on what she CAN do rather than what she can’t! She’s wonderfully creative & musical and I’m excited to think about where she’ll go! 🙂

  • Wendi Bollinger says:

    I mostly enjoy nonfiction but here’s one maybe you have not read that is somewhat fiction – Liz Curtis Higgs’s books called Thorn in my heart, Fair is the Rose, and Once came a prince. They are loosely based on Old Testament stories.
    Your site has really challenge me on your thoughts of spending quality time with my children and not having self negative thoughts. Thanks for the encouragement to be a better Christian, mom, and wife!!!

  • Mary says:

    My daughter was the same way about riding a bike and tying her shoes.
    Now she is 18 and I’m enjoying time with her as much as I can.

  • Kerry says:

    I just finished my first Wendell Berry book–Andy Catlett Early Travels. Great fiction and a quick read. I’d love to win this list of books!

  • Jennifer says:

    I recently discovered the Charles Lenox mysteries by Charles Finch. I love period British mysteries!

  • Abby H. says:

    The high mountains of Portugal. While reading this book it felt as if I was in another country. It’s enlightened me and inspired me.

  • Judith Martinez says:

    My favorite fiction book is a tie between the Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers and The Chronicles of Narnia. I know I cheated by choosing series but I can’t help it!

  • Kim says:

    I would vote for you reading a fun classic like Mary Poppins!? it was so relaxing and enjoyable and my kids loved it, then you can watch the movie and compare!

    Or for just you, read Jane Eyre- romance and intrigue! A Favorite!

  • Liz says:

    I’m all about fiction that also does a bit more, lately. Be it tugging the heart strings or making you think, I’m a huge reader too.

    The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Rebecca Skloot: FASCINATING!

    Barkskins – Annie Proulx: Just started this myself and am getting sucked in.

  • Clare C. says:

    My favorite book ever remains Gone With the Wind. I’m a long-time reader, Crystal, but rarely post. Loved your heart comments about Silas… I’m a mom of 4 wonderful kids but there are some things that I really was not able to teach well or early to my kids, despite my best efforts, and bike riding is one of those things! I always tell people that if you want parenting advice about potty training, teaching how to tie shoes or to ride a bike (or now drive!), to please ask someone else… Not my strong points! Anyway, your transparency is, as always, a blessing!

  • Chris Barratt says:

    My recommendation for some top fiction books would be the ones written by my daughter Amanda Barratt, an ECPA best-selling author. Her most recent books are two novellas in the Seven Brides for Seven Texans Collection (her novella is called The Truest Heart) and The California Gold Rush Romance Collection (her story in that is called The Price of Love). Her story as an author is quite remarkable. From signing with a literary agency at age 16 to her first book contract with Barbour Publishing at age 18. Since then she has had four novellas with Barbour, two have been ECPA bestsellers and three more are soon to be published and her first full length novel comes out in Jan 2018. She first started writing while being homeschooled and truly feels like this is what God has called her to do. So I’d recommend all her books (but then, I’m partial, since she’s my daughter LOL! :-)) Thanks for another giveaway Crystal! Have been enjoying these Sunday posts!!!

  • Laura says:

    Some of my recent favs are “The Nightingale” and “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.” I learned a lot while reading both of them and fell in love with the characters!

  • Christine says:

    Silas is just fine. My oldest was 7 when he learned to ride a bike and 6 when he learned to tie his shoes. Our neighbor, who was 13 last year, learned how to ride a bike. All the boys in the neighborhood helped him. None of them cared. It was a funny sight seeing him learn as he was on a bike meant for an 8 year old. We were all laughing and cheering when he did it. The “lesson” took about an hour.

    I was 9 when I learned to ride a bike and my youngest was 3 when he learned. We all will learn what we need to learn when we are ready.

    Three cheers to Jesse for putting away dishes ?

  • Ashley says:

    Right now, my favorite is The Mysterious Benedict Society series. These are actually youth fiction, but they are fabulous!

  • Kim S says:

    I am currently reading The One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood. So far, it is not disappointing!

  • JB says:

    Francine Rivers ” The Scarlet Thread ” is very good. I have an asperger’s son .He has much difficulty with lots of things ,but he is a true gift.

  • Karin says:

    One of my favorite Christian fiction series is the Diamond of the Rockies by Kristen Heitzmann.

  • Kelsey says:

    A Wrinkle in Time. I read it every year.

  • Liz says:

    I just started reading Ivy Sparks it is a former Oprah book club book.
    I am a first grade teacher and it is reading week! I would love some more books!

  • Stephanie says:

    My favorite fiction (series) is the Yada Yada Prayer Club by Neta Jackson. It helps that is set in my area so it’s fun to read and know where a location is or an event happened.

  • Amy says:

    I love fiction, I can’t think of just ONE!! But a recent favorite was “Mark of the King” by Jocelyn Green.

  • Courtney says:

    I just read “Land of Silence” by Tessa Afshar. It tells the story of the woman Jesus healed from 12 years of bleeding (obviously a work of fiction, since the biblical details on her are sparse). It covers about a 16 or 17 year span. I cried so many times in this book! It defies genres, but is THE BEST book I have read in ages, and I read a LOT. There is a bit of romance, a bit of mystery, and tons of heart wrenching events, with ultimate healing and resolution after her meeting Christ. I know it’s fiction, but the details in fiction like this help make the New Testament more real; putting real life into details like uncleanness that are hard for us to imagine.

  • Kristi says:

    You really can’t go wrong with anything by Dee Henderson! I read them over and over!

  • Christine F. says:

    I loved the “Book Thief” – riveting, sad, but also very inspiring.

  • Kate says:

    The Magic of Ordinary Days by Ann Howard Creel!

  • Connie says:

    Regarding Silas, hang in there. We have twins who are 17 now and seniors in high school. One of them is on high honor roll, Eagle Scout, Honor Society, etc etc. He didn’t ‘get’ reading until well into the second half of second grade despite reading intervention and other assistance. I felt like a total failure as a mom since we had the ‘he is reading well below grade level’ conversation over. and. over. Obviously it didn’t end up slowing him down!

    Hang in there!

  • Ashley says:

    My dearest friend introduced me to a wonderful series called, “Prince of Privilege” by Jessica Dotta. For all those that LOVE reading books set in the Jane Austen era. It is so beautifullly written with a redemption and love as major themes. Didn’t think of myself as a reader, but have somehow read the three book series already in the past month! Hard to put down!

  • Laura says:

    My kids also struggled learning how to ride a bike. My husband had an idea to take the pedals off their bikes to teach them how to balance. Within a few weeks we put them back on and they were instantly riding without any help.

    • Kristine says:

      Same here… Ours spent a few weeks to a month or so on a balance bike and it was so much easier to switch to a regular two wheeler at that point!

  • right now i’m reading lilac girls…can’t put it down!

  • Rachel says:

    My favorite “go to sleep” books are the Mitford seris by Jan Karon.

  • Sarah says:

    Dear Mr Knightley and Me Before You have been my favorite fiction reads recently. I just plowed through Anna Kendrick’s auto biography which is super funny. Hmm for a fiction recommendation though, A Man called Ove? I haven’t read it yet, but I hear such wonderful things, I’m hoping to find it at the bigg book sale we go to in April.

  • Donna says:

    All the Light We Cannot See – great story set in France in World War II.

  • Jessica says:

    One of my favorites right now is actually a teen series, the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare.

  • sarah says:

    I haven’t read much fiction lately. The last one I read was Dear Mr Knightly, thanks to your recommendation, and I love it.

  • Linzi says:

    I am currently reading “The Shack” by William P. Young and I would definitely recommend it.

  • Kimberly in NC says:

    I really enjoyed Francine Rivers’ trilogy Mark of the Lion. The story of the young Jewish girl as she learns to follow and trust her Lord while being a slave in Rome after her family was killed in Jerusalem was so well written that I couldn’t put it down. It also tells the story of a Germanian warrior who was captured and enslaved as a gladiator in Rome as well as the story of a wealthy Roman heir who can’t understand the young Jewish slave girl’s peace and love towards her vain and selfish owner who happens to be the Roman’s own sister. It has some brutal and graphic scenes in the books, but overall, the story is so compelling.
    I also read Leota’s Garden by Rivers and it was not as gruesome, but told a good story of forgiveness within a broken family.
    Not fiction, but a great book as well is Fearless by Eric Blehm. It tells of Adam Brown, a Navy Seal who went through a lot of bad choices growing up, but he overcame through Christ. This was such a good book, that I will be buying one for each of my 3 sons when they graduate; it was that touching.
    Sorry, I seem to go on and on, but…I love to read.

  • Tina Clum says:

    Can’t go wrong with Anne of Green Gables

  • Debbie B. says:

    I’m loving your weekly posts! I haven’t read a lot of fiction lately … but I have enjoyed Terri Blackstock in the past, and a novel by Alton Gansky called Angel. Thanks for sharing your heart about your son – parenting sure is a challenging journey but it is filled with so many blessings!

  • Marina says:

    All the Light We Cannot See is an amazing book!

  • Pam says:

    I just finished The Greenglass House – a little bit of a mystery but not a very scary one.

  • Mel says:

    I would love to win your books. Thanks for the opportunity.

    However I give you nothing for fiction recommendations. I am a non fiction reader. I realized after my school age years that was the reason I hated English class. I did not enjoy reading fiction and the reports they made us write. Every thing was a theme about sex and social economics and ugh the same stuff over and over. Give me the facts!

    Needless to say I am not a read between the lines person.

  • Lorrie says:

    Have you read AD 30 and AD 33 by Ted Dekker? I really liked them…

  • Melissa Moore says:

    Knowing that you are reading old Christian books this year, one of the first of my favorite fiction books that popped into my head is Not My Will by Francena Arnold. If you haven’t read it yet and decide to read it, just make sure you have some tissues handy, since it will make you laugh and cry–and maybe at the same time!

  • Sarah says:

    I got an advanced copy last year of Messenger By Moonlight by Stephenie Grace Whitson. Historical fiction of the early settlers and Pony Express. Loved it and learned something in the process. 🙂

  • Beth Looper says:

    I love George MacDonald’s princess stories: The Princess and the Goblin, The Princess and Curdie , The Light Princess, and the Lost Princess. These may sound incredibly “girly,” but they are adventurous, honorable, and theologically rich.

    MacDonald once said “I write, not for the children, for the child-like, whether they be of five, or fifty, or seventy-five.” I just love that!

  • Heather says:

    I am like you, I struggle to choose fiction books as I typically reach for non-fiction books. So I am not sure if I have a favorite right now, as that seems to fluctuate. Just recently I read Dear Mr. Knightly (which I think was actually on your recommendation so you’ve probably read it 🙂 ) and I read Pretense by Lori Wick, which I haven’t read since I was a teenager.

  • Nicole Blanchard says:

    I am currently reading Swiss Family Robinson. I love it! I’m going to read it aloud to my 5 year daughter soon.

  • Gigi says:

    Others have already listed all of my suggestions except for _All the Light We Cannot See_, which you’ve probably already read.

  • Rachel Brown says:

    The Nicholas Sparks books are always a fun read!

  • chantel says:

    I’m rereading, for like the 100th time, the Love Comes Softly series by Oke. Love those books!

  • Danielle says:

    The Giver and Redeeming Love. I’m not much of a fiction reader but these two books were incredible and very difficult to put down.

  • Tracy Scharf says:

    I love the Karen Kingsbury books. Such great messages embedded in her stories.

  • Staci Brown says:

    I think you would enjoy The Kitchen House if you haven’t read it. Historical fiction, quick moving.

  • Kim M says:

    I recently read The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton and oh my heart! It has been a long time since a book has made me fall in love with it. It was heartbreaking and courageous and lovely and tragic all wrapped up into a beautiful story.

    I love to read and have put it on the back burner for years and part of my journey this year is to read more and give myself that time.

  • Joyce says:

    My favorite books to read are inspiration romance. My favorite author is Robin Lee Hatcher. A Promise Kept was a good read. Also I like to read biography books.

  • Tamboliya says:

    Hind’s Feet On High Places by Hannah Hurnard.

  • Melinda says:

    Would enjoy reading those books and when done sharing them with friends.
    Thank you sharing.

  • Lynne Tretow says:

    Read Dear Mr Knightley!

  • Meagan says:

    I just re-read Persuasion by Jane Austen. It may be my favorite of her novels.

  • Missy says:

    What plan are you for eating

  • Danielle August says:

    I read A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.
    Such a touching, funny, emotional and thought provoking book.
    Definitely worth your time.

  • Stacie says:

    Right now I am reading Ive go your number by Sophie Kinsella! It is very good!

  • Vicky Snyder says:

    I think you would love anything from my favorite author, Richard Paul Evans, but especially The Walk Series. Every book of his is inspiring.

  • Stephanie says:

    “Ready of Not” by Chautona Havig.

    I have a love hate relationship with this book – I love the cleanness of the interpersonal relationships that begin to unfold (and continues through the next two books), as well as the closeness of family. Yet, I hate how much I compare my flawed self to the seemingly perfect fictional character (i.e. she does not seem to get aggravated very easily).

    I got back and reread it every few months, so I must love it enough to make myself overlook my flaws.

  • Summer says:

    I just read “The Shack” by William Young. It’s fiction, but it truly touched my heart.

  • April says:

    I do love to read any book penned by Nicholas Sparks, although I like his early works better.

  • Megan says:

    The Poisonwood bible by Barbara Kingsolver is really good.

  • Melissa Cazin says:

    I just wanted to say thank you for the encouragement to just be the best mom you can be for your child and love them right where they are. Two of my three children are “behind” in at least one area. It is difficult to not compare myself with others, but this was encouraging. Thank you.

  • Heather Bellman says:

    Have you read “The Circle” by Dave Eggers? Quick read and it reminded me a bit of an eerily modern day/slightly futurist version of “1984”.

  • sarah says:

    Sophie’s Heart by Lori Wick! An oldie but goodie.

  • Pamela says:

    Flight of Dreams was a fun book for me.

  • Kaylee says:

    If you have never read the Anne of Green Gables series, I would recommend those! I am reading the rest of the series for the first time and they are so enjoyable. I also highly recommend the movie, if you have never seen it.

  • Brooke says:

    My favorite fiction book is A Dog’s Purpose by Bruce Cameron. I read it years ago shortly after losing my beloved golden retriever. I cried through most of it, which was pretty healing as I reflected on why I loved my pup so much.

    Some of my favorite nonfiction books are written by Jon Katz. He has a variety of memoirs written about his beloved dogs. He really captures how animals influence our lives in his writing.

  • Lauren says:

    The Nightingale is wonderful.

  • Amanda says:

    I just finished Jodi Picoult’s newest book Small Great Things. She’s an excellent author and her books give much to think about. Very good book.

  • Katherine Richard says:

    My favorite fiction book in the last couple of years is ‘The Nightingale’ by K. Hannah.

  • Jenny says:

    My favorite fiction books are anything by Karen Kingsbury! Currently I have been reading through a lot of Beverly Lewis books and I like those as well.

  • Heather says:

    Les miserables will always be my favorite fiction book

  • Sarah says:

    I’m reading Darkness is my Only Companion about mental illness and Christian faith, written by Kathryn Green-McCreight, and finding it fascinating and encouraging.

  • Melody says:

    Hey, Thanks for sharing about how we should not worry about when our kids are able to do _________. I do have a quick tip for helping a child learn to ride a bike and it’s so simple. My older two children were very old when they finally learned; ages 8 and 10! Then a dear friend whose children were riding at very young ages told me to get the bike “too small” for the child. My youngest three all started with bikes that were just a little too small for them; their feet could touch the ground easily. That did it! They all learned by age four! When they can easily touch the ground, they can balance so much easier and have the confidence to really let go and give it a try. Perhaps this will help if you just find a cheap small bike at a thrift store or something until he learns. Then he can move up to a bike his size.

  • Heather C says:

    My daughter didn’t learn how to ride a bike until 11ish….and it really wasn’t that big of a deal! Now she’s 14.5 and rides her used bike (what a bargain I got for that on Craig’s list ?) all over town!

  • Shelley B says:

    A Man Called Ove is such a great read. I’ve been recommending it to everyone.

  • Anna Rose says:

    One Amazing Thing. Read it for Book Club. It is an amazing and short story. Group of people get trapped in a basement office because an earthquake shuts them in. And to keep up spirits they each tell one amazing story about their life. It taught me that each and every person has a story to tell, if only we are willing to listen.

    It’s my favorite book! I hope you get a chance to read it.

  • Janet says:

    You may want to read “City of Refuge” by Ashley King

  • Lisa says:

    I read the Divergent series with my daughter awhile back and we enjoyed it (she is older) but truly I typically choose Christian books – those are what I enjoy most. But it was nice to do something with my daughter 🙂

  • MANDI says:

    I am reading “Maude” right now and truly enjoy it. I love how history plays out around their life.
    I also love that you asked everyone to write their faves. Thank you! I now have a huge list to request on OverDrive through my public library!

  • Jess says:

    The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis is an amazing book. I just can’t get enough of it! It’s changed my perspective on life:)

  • Tanya says:

    I’ve recently read Clare Vanderpool’s “Moon over Manifest” (a Newberry Winner) and “Navigating Early” after hearing them recommended on the Read Aloud Revival podcast. Both were excellent, but “Navigating Early” was my favorite of the two. It is a novel with complex layers which delve into loss and recovering from loss; however, it is not depressing, but rather hope filled and beautiful.

  • Stacia says:

    I try to read children’s literature books so I can keep on top of what my kids are reading. There are fantastic books out there for kids that are quick reads and fun. My husband loves the Lloyd Alexander books that were written areound C.S. Lewis’ time. The Book of Three, The Black Caludron, etc. I like Shannon Hale’s books like Princess Academy, Goose Girl. Those are fun and quick.

  • Vanessa says:

    I realy like Christmas Caramel Murder by Joanne Fluke.

  • Jean C. says:

    I enjoyed the latest John Grisham novel, “The Whistler.”

  • Rebecca Scott says:

    The Undoing of Saint Silvanus by Beth Moore is my only fiction recommendation. I am just starting to read again and it’s in my stack to start : )

  • SK Bell says:

    Yet another awesome stack! Have you read anything by Colleen Coble? I’m new to Christian fiction (happily taking recommendations! Suspense/thrillers are always my favorite!) and new to this author, but I’m currently reading Because You’re Mine and really enjoying it so far!
    My favorite fiction is To Kill a Mockingbird, which I’m sure you’ve already read =]

  • Deanna says:

    I’ve enjoyed some of Kate Morton’s books. I haven’t read much fiction in the last couple years though!

  • Jennie says:

    I am not much of a fiction reader myself personally, but I read lots of fiction with my children and I so love Little House on the Prairie, but I am sure that isn’t what you are looking for. But people have tried to recommend Amish Fiction to me.

  • Lisa says:

    Your comment on your son struggling to ride a bike really resonated with me. My oldest was eleven before she finally was able to ride independently, and it was something I struggled to teach and felt bad because she was embarrassed by not having this skill.

    The trick that finally worked, after just a few minutes?

    Finding a big grassy hill and having her just coast down. She quickly figured out how to balance without having to worry about balancing and pedaling and steering.

    She was riding on a flat surface after just a few trips, and I’ve since used this technique with two of her younger siblings with similar results.

    So if you have a grassy hill anywhere nearby, I highly recommend it!

    As far as fiction books to recommend, I enjoy The Californians series by Lori Wick.

  • Julia says:

    I love The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner, and the following books in the series, but the first is the best!

  • Jolene Miller says:

    Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers. So good and such a challenge spiritually for me!!

  • Adrienne says:

    One of my favorite fiction books is Jane Eyre. I mostly read non fiction books nowadays, but I reread Jane every few years and always get something new from it.

  • Sheila A says:

    I have been in book clubs over the years, and generally they help me commit to a book. I always enjoy the discussion and friendship, too. Some of my favorites: Drowning Ruth, The Secret Life of Bees, Firefly Lane, The Women of the House, Jacobs Ladder…

  • Naomi says:

    My favorites are The Hiding Place, Safely Home, Little Women, The Testament, and George MacDonald’s books. Thank you so much for all the great book recommendations you have given!

  • Destiny says:

    I was very intrigued, for a long time, with any novel about Amish life. Beverly Lewis was my favorite. They were always good, fast reads. After about a dozen I had to give them up, the storylines are pretty much all the same. But they were my guilty pleasure for a period of time.

  • Zac says:

    Have you ever read Even Now by Karen Kingsbury? If you like a book that will make you cry I highly recommend it.

  • Jennifer says:

    Any thing by Karen Kingsbury. But her Baxter series is my absolute favorite!

  • Hannah Beth Reid says:

    I hope you’ve read “Jane Eyre”, because I didn’t until a couple of years ago and it wonderful! Also, “Rebecca” is another gripping classic tale.
    For something completely different, my sci-fi loving husband recommended “Have Space Suit – Will Travel” to me recently and I enjoyed it very much!

  • Brenda G says:

    Hi Crystal. I loved this post especially when you talked about crazytown thinking because I say this to myself when I start comparing or talking down to myself. I love reading and my favorite fiction book I read last year was The sea of tranquility by Katja Millay. Check out the description and rating on Goodreads. Its supposed to be for young adults but I am 40, mom of 2 and loved it. Thanks for your blog, you tube channel and all that you do!

  • Heidi says:

    To relax, I enjoy reading Amish fiction by Beverly Lewis. Haven’t had time to read her books for a while, but I hope to get back to it once I’m though my other books:)

  • Kimberly says:

    If you like time travel books, The Hourglass Door trilogy by Lisa Mangum is really good.

  • Melodie says:

    I still LOVE the Chronicles of Narnia. I am reading it with my youngest (Number 4, 4th time to read it aloud, and my older kids still want to sit and listen with him!) Timeless!

  • Marina Datthyn says:

    The Shell Seekers is probably my favorite fiction book. It’s not Christian fiction lol but my grandma recommended it to me in college and I’ve loved it ever since! Currently rereading it for the something-th time because I’m due with baby #4 in a few weeks and who knows when I’ll ever get to read again! The stack looks great 🙂

  • Robin schreiber says:

    I recommend “We were liars”. It is very engaging, sad, and it has a surprise ending. My favorite nonfiction would be “The immortal Henrietta Lacks.”. It is a surprising and shocking Medical History novel.

  • Kara says:

    I just read and loved Circling the Sun, by Paula McClain. It is the story of Beryl Markham, who grew up in Kenya, and became the first aviator to fly from England to North America. Amazing story, and wonderfully written!

  • Krystal says:

    Pretty much anything written by Tolkien is great. One of my top favorite series is the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson. Some of the middle books aren’t as good as the first three and the last one or so. But overall, they are a great read if you are looking for an action packed thriller. If you are looking for a fun & easy read you can do with the kids (& yet maybe enjoy yourself), I would recommend the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series & other series by Rick Riordan. He’ll definitely have you feeling a roller coaster of emotions throughout each book. There are so many other great series, but I guess I will stop with those. 🙂

  • Bobbi says:

    I love reading, and love your suggestions! My favorite two fiction books are “Not My Will” by F. Arnold and “Safely Home” by R. Alcorn. I imagine you’ve read them both, but it might be time to read them again!!

  • Dawn says:

    The Chronicles of Narnia series. I know they seem more like kids’ books, but I like them. And have you tried the Mitford series by Jan Karon?

  • Carrie says:

    The Anne of Green Gables series is still one of my favorites. I especially like Anne’s House of Dreams.

  • Danielle says:

    I’ve read a lot of young adult and children’s fiction the past year. One book that’s really stuck with me is “Esperanza Rising.” I loved reading it as an adult because I understood the mother’s character in a way I never could have as a child. I also thought it was really interesting the way the author referred to the passage of time according to what was being harvested. We spent some time at Naval Station Lemoore, so I was extra interested in the historical aspect of a region where we once lived.

  • Jackie M. says:

    I’ve been re-reading The Tangled Web by LM Montgomery. It always makes me laugh, and there are parts that almost make me cry too.

  • Diane Hartmire says:

    Anything by Beverly Lewis…..she writes the best Amish fiction. And since I grew up near Amish country, I just love her books and often yearn for the simpler life.

  • Sarah says:

    One of my favorites is The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. It’s a delightful story about a group of people on an island in England during the German occupation. It’s told in letters. This one warms my heart.

  • Gail D says:

    I am currently reading “The Shack” by William P. Young. While it is fiction, it touched my soul. It is bringing me closer to God. I know no other way to explain it. Not much makes me cry, but this book does almost every other page! 🙂

  • Caroline says:

    Gap Creek by Robert Morgan or Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson!!! Such great stories with such a punch of History!

  • Allison says:

    I’m enjoying the books I’m reading aloud to my kids this year: All of a Kind Family, Five Little Peppers and How They Grow, The Golden Goblet. I think my absolute favorite has been Bambi. Such beautiful writing ☺

  • Sarah says:

    I enjoy Beverly Lewis’ books!

  • Carolynn says:

    I like the older Nicholas Sparks books. I don’t read much fiction anymore.

  • Diane says:

    I love the Little House on the Prairie books and am having fun rediscovering them with my daughter. I also enjoy most of Jane Austen’s works. The depth of her characters is fantastic, and she always makes me think about my own personal development and growth in virtue.

    • Lorella Ritzel says:

      I’ve loved reading several Diana Wallis Taylor books. I’m just starting Martha. Journey to the Well and Mary Magdalene were both good reads.

  • Lisa Manning says:

    I just read the Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman. It is about making choices that have the potential to effect others. EXTREMELY thought provoking. I pondered it for days after I was finished. What would I have done in the same circumstances. Here is the Amazon description:

    “After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.

    Tom, who keeps meticulous records and whose moral principles have withstood a horrific war, wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel insists the baby is a “gift from God,” “

  • Marshan says:

    I loved Cinder which was a sci-fi fiction book. But I also love Aggie’s Inheritance which is a Christian Fiction book! There’s so many great books that it’ s hard to narrow it down.

  • Adriana says:

    My favorite fiction books are a tie between Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery and The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien.

  • Tracy says:

    A friend recommended the Karen Kingsbury Baxter family series to me a couple of years ago. It was the first time in probably five or six years that I allowed myself to take the time to read just for fun. I read through those books quickly because I just couldn’t put them down! Be forewarned that not far into the series, you will begin to feel like you really know this family and are somewhat a part of them. I was so sad when the series came to an end, and I haven’t read since. 🙁

  • lyss says:

    The Little House books are a great read aloud with your kids! But you’ve probably already done that…
    I guess I haven’t read a fiction book for myself in a long time!
    (Very excited to finally get a library card the other day!)

  • Christie says:

    I was going to recommend Beverly Lewis also. I love all her books. One of my favorites is the “Daughters of Abram” series. I believe there are 5 in the series. I enjoyed them so much!! Good fiction that keeps you turning pages trying to figure things out. You could probably zip through them all in a couple of days.

  • Natasha says:

    It’s a tie between “The Shack” and “The Life and Adventures of Santa Clause” for me. I know…such a range haha!

  • If you haven’t read “The Undoing of Saint Silvanus” by Beth Moore, I highly recommend it — excellent!

  • Kellik says:

    I loved the Million Dollar mysteries by Mindy Starns Clark. Good fun mysteries:) Although right now I’m reading a book on marriage and the broken way by Ann voskamp

  • Cheryl Anderson says:

    Anything by Francine Rivers

  • Sue says:

    I love a book called “Follow the River”. A biography of a woman who was abducted by an American Indian tribe back in the 1800s. She and another captive who became her friend escaped by earning the trust of their captors. The author backtracked their entire route and spoke to current family members to piece together a somewhat fictional story based on true events.

    I also like a book called “Gap Creek”, an Oprah book club selection.

    Can’t get enough of the James Patterson books!

  • Ladonna says:

    Thank you for a fabulous giveaway!!!
    I love Karen Kingsbury’s books!! All of them are excellent!!! I don’t know that I can pick just one favorite, but of her books that I’ve recently read, Brush of Wings, stands out as an wonderful book!!!

  • Marianne says:

    Oh my….do preschool fiction books count?? I’m homeschooling 3 young children and fiction books for me have been put on the back burner! I’ve been reading Sally Clarkson’s The Life Giving Home and loving it! One of my favorite all time fiction books is To Kill A Mocking Bird…would love to read that again!

  • Heather P says:

    I picked up the Janette Oke series Canadian West Series- When Calls the Heart I had read many of her books when I was younger. Quick reads, little historical, Christ centered characters. The series “continues” with the main characters niece in the Return to the Canadian West series. (I LOVE the tv show, loosely based on the Return series! When Calls the Heart on Hallmark)

  • Meredith Pross says:

    I’m only read fiction over vacations and holidays as well! Over Christmas, I read The Circle by Dave Eggers and it was excellent- super interesting and thought provoking! It’s coming out as a movie soon-if it’s not already out- and I’m excited to see if it’s anything like the book.

  • Carlie says:

    Hi there — I just wanted to tell you that my kids eat cereal for dinner sometimes. Once I even let two of them eat it off the floor (when they were little) because they spilled the whole box. They are 17, 15, and 11 now. They like cereal and eat it after school or whenever! So be it!

    I can’t think of the last fiction book I read! I wish I had more time to read in general. I wanted to read “The Girl on the Train” after I saw the movie (but the book is still “saved for later” in my Amazon account). I am currently reading “Always by my Side” by Edward Grinnan, which is about how dogs have touched his life, but it’s not fiction. If you love dogs, I am sure you’d love this book. Edward is the editor-in-chief of Guideposts.

  • Gaby says:

    I really enjoyed Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers.

  • Jenel says:

    The Last Sin eater

  • pam says:

    Gathering Shadows by Nancy Mehl is a book I found on Bookbub that I recently enjoyed. It is a Christian mystery/romance. It has been quite a while since I read a mystery so it was a nice change of pace.

  • Melissa Fleming says:

    Honestly I love Madeleine L’engle. Her stories fascinate me, are thought provoking with fantasy, and completely foreign to what my brain could think up. Her writing transports me and that’s what I need in a book when life is crazy-like everyday! A Wrinkle in Time is my ultimate favorite.

  • Karen E. says:

    A fiction book I read recently to my daughter that I loved and she loved (and your children would love if they haven’t already read it) – Understood Betsy.

  • Heather h says:

    Loved the Cinder series

  • Rosemary says:

    What a great stack of books you are giving! As for a fiction recommendation, I would say that anything Debbie Macomber writes is good—her characters always suck me right into the story and feel like old friends. I also love all the mysteries that Margaret Truman wrote set in Washington D.C. And one more just for good measure? I just started a book called The Good Pig: the extraordinary life of Christopher Hogwood, by Sy Montgomery and I’m really enjoying it—it’s funny, and quirky, and is a great break from my everyday life (I have not finished it, though, so I can’t vouch for the ending.) Happy reading!

  • Lori L. says:

    I’m almost finished with The Silent Sister and I’m enjoying it very much.

  • april carrasco says:

    ive been wanting to read some of these!! You are very generous!

  • april says:

    Oh my, how to pick a favorite?!?! I just finished “The Shipping News” which I enjoyed. It’s a little bit dark in some ways, but overall a good story. I really enjoyed “The Fountainhead” and “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand. I would also love to read “Gone with the Wind” again because its been many years since I read it. I moved from the Midwest to Georgia for about 13 years before returning back home and would love to read it now that I have a new appreciation for the South!

  • Amy says:

    The Selection series by Kiera Cass. Fun, addicting and entertaining.

  • Julie says:

    My favorite fiction book is actually science fiction. The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury. As a kid, I had no desire to read science fiction, but I read this and it wasn’t at all what I thought it would be!!

  • Lisa R says:

    I love anything by Karen Kingsbury.

  • Kellie says:

    The fiction book that I am currently reading is called The Wedding Dress. I am always looking for a good book recommendation, but never want to spend very much.

  • Cate Hoepner says:

    Anything by Francine rivers!!

  • Melissa says:

    Two of my favorit fiction books are The Help and The Secret Keeper.

  • Halina says:

    Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

  • Simonne Jordan says:

    Any of Karen Kinsburys books

  • Molly E. says:

    Woo hoo! I love your stack! Right now I’m reading and loving A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter. I’m into classics so my favorites (in case you’ve missed them along the way) are Little Women, Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice. Thanks for your generosity!

  • Kaitlyn says:

    “Safely Home” by Randy Alcorn is incredible and one of those eyeopeners/life changers. I highly recommend! 🙂

  • Diana C says:

    I have recently read and enjoyed Dear Mr. Knightley, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and The Nesting Place, and I’m currently reading Uninvited.

  • Bonita says:

    Honestly, i need to relax and read fiction books just havent had the time hu bie works full time and goes this school and i am homes hooling my 8 yr old and 3 yr old..the 3 yr old is a boy and a huge handful..God is helping me daily…

  • Stephanie says:

    I really don’t read much fiction & im not sure any of my suggestions will be helpful, but I Iove books and giveaways so my reading suggestion would be —

    The God Box by Mary Lou Quinlan 🙂

    I just finished reading #GirlBoss, You are a Bad@$$, & now I’m starting Better than Before. I’m really trying to find my purpose and motivation to do something bigger with this life. Anything you found truly motivational or encouraging?

  • Kathryn says:

    My favorite fiction books are “Not My Will”, by Francina Arnold, and “Twice Freed”, by Patricia St. John. Both are riveting no matter whether you’ve never read them, or it’s your hundredth time through!

  • Jen Ward says:

    I enjoy Francine Rivers’ books. Just finished Bridge to Haven.

  • Dessy Mullane says:

    I just read ‘According to the Pattern’ by Grace Livingston Hill this week. It wasn’t ANYTHING like the other books I’ve read of hers (I read it based on a recommendation from a sewing blog I follow) and I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it!

  • Chris says:

    I recommend One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood. What a lovely story that I couldn’t put down. 104 year old woman befriends a young boy scout.

  • Beth says:

    I like to read Karen Kingsbury when I am on the mood to read fiction. I recently read Even Now and it was very good.

  • Kayla says:

    I love Liane Moriarty ‘ s books.

  • Stephanie says:

    I recommended the book Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker on Instagram to you. I love historical fiction especially about the Civil War! It is also based on true events. It is fascinating to read about important figures and to see the different side of them. I am a big nonfiction reader but like to add some fiction in as well!

  • Jeni says:

    I loved the Divergent series and Hunger Games but all time favorite has to be Harry Potter series. I have a bit of a thing for YA fiction. I did adore Dear Mr. Knightly after you recommended it last year so I’d love to read some more that you recommend! ?

  • Jodi says:

    Must be my age…I don’t read much fiction but I have enjoyed Karen Kingsbury before.

  • Jennifer says:

    I love anything written by my friend and yours, Kathi Lipp ?

  • Deb Combs says:

    I enjoyed the Shipping New and Henrietta Lacks.

  • Courtney Palmer says:

    Anything by Sarah Addison Allen. I think my favorites were The Sugar Queen and Lost Lake. I would highly recommend them! Thank YOU for your recommendations. I just love seeing what your reading!

  • Laura J says:

    I really enjoy the Janette Oaks series Love Came Softly, as an easy fiction read.

  • Emily says:

    I really enjoyed the River of Time series by Lisa T. Bergren. It’s categorized under YA, but I still really enjoyed it! 🙂

  • Zaneta Nelson says:

    “I’ll Watch the Moon” by Ann Tatlock is a great fiction story.

  • Lori w says:

    I loved letters from Skye by Jessica Brockmole. Elin Hilderbrand, Susan Mallery, and Debbie Macomber.
    Oh and four weddings and a fiasco was fun.
    I am a librarian so my reading list grows everyday.
    I keep a long list of Christian authors and cozy mysteries.

  • carissa says:

    I’ve enjoyed reading books by Jojo Moyes. I just read”Paris by One” and really enjoyed it.

  • Dana Barry says:

    I really enjoyed reading All of a Kind Family 🙂 to my kiddos 🙂

  • Katy says:

    The Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin is my favorite fiction book – but anything by him is a win. This book is being made into a movie that’ll be released in the fall, so be sure to read it before then. Seriously, his books are amazing!

  • Anne says:

    I don’t know how your literary tastes run, but Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston is my favorite novel of all time. I’ve probably read it 8 times. It’s a classic, the writing is simply beautiful, and it’s also a page-turner. Once you read a chapter you’ll get used to reading the dialect. It’s definitely not a “Christian fiction” work like many other suggestions here, so don’t go into it expecting that. But it’s worth it!

  • Courtney says:

    The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom. ❤❤❤❤❤❤

  • Samantha McElroy says:

    I have read almost all of Nicholas Sparks books. It is hard for me to choose which one is my favorite. I am reading one of his books right now See Me and it is really good. I don’t read as much fiction books as I use to so it has been nice to start reading one again.

  • Connie says:

    I too, am a fan of Karen Kingsbury. Such heartwarming stories. I also, loved The Shack. It gave me a deeper understanding of trinity how the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit work together as One. Going to see the movie this weekend!!! I loved your book “Saying Goodbye to Survival Mode”. Thank you for publishing it!

  • Cheryl Long says:

    I just finished The German Girl by Armando Lucas Correa. Great book.

  • Carrie says:

    Redeeming Love!!! By Francine Rivers

  • Angie says:

    I had to chuckle. Josie just had her break through with the bike riding last year (age 8) and still would prefer to wear lace-less shoes and knows far less staple children songs…among other things. 😉 I sometimes wonder if being the baby, I’ve forgotten to teach her these things because I’ve already been there with the older ones. However, she has her career planned out, thinks ahead far more than her siblings and could cook us dinner any given night. They all have their different gifts, huh? I can definitely relate though. Silas is a remarkable kid.

  • Amy says:

    Have you read Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan? It might be based on a true story, but it reads like a novel. So good!

  • Christie says:

    My fiction reading would be in the Sandra Boynton realm right now.

  • Cynthia says:

    The Hidden Hand!

  • Leslie says:

    I don’t really read fiction. But I have enjoyed The Girl on the Train. And Dear Mr. Knightly.

  • Lindsy L says:

    While I will always be a huge fan of C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia series and any Amish fiction books by Beverly Lewis, The Giver, by Louis Lowry, remains my number 1 favorite fictional story. It’s such a thought-provoking book!

  • Jennifer Madigan says:

    I love any historical fiction. Sisi is one of my favorites.

  • Meghan says:

    It has actually been too long since I have read a fiction book but I would have to say that my favorite fiction book is The Choice by Nicholas Sparks. And pretty much anything written by Nicholas Sparks.

  • Paula says:

    Pilgrim’s Progress

  • Courtney Palmer says:

    Anything by Sarah Addison Allen. The Sugar Queen and Lost Lake are my favorites. Thank you for all your wonderful book recommendations, I loved Dear Mr. Knightley!

  • Kerin says:

    My current rediscovered favorite is The Little Princess. I loved this book as a child, and I love it more listening to my 7 year old read it to me as part of her reading curriculum! I definitely resisted God’s call to homeschool her, but this is one of the many times I can sit and truly enjoy the blessings of the time together.

  • Molly says:

    I love “The Shack”! Read it before the movie comes out in March. It’s a great, fast read that challenges our perceptions of God and where He is during tradgedy in our lives.

  • Michele says:

    Any of Jamie Langston Turner’s books are highly recommended!

  • Rebekah says:

    Any and all Lawana Blackwell books!!

  • Andrea says:

    My favorite fiction book is Pride and Prejudice, but I recently read The Chilbury Ladies Choir and really enjoyed it!

  • Kathleen Ewald says:

    I love the Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

  • Bonny says:

    One of my favorites is The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews. The story line is exciting as the main character travels to various places in history. At each stop he meets a famous historical figure and they impart some wisdom on him. I like to write down each thing that the main character learned as he traveled through history. I really enjoyed this book and learned a lot from it as well. It’s a great fiction read, but any of Andy Andrews’ books are great because you always learn something when you read one of his books. One or two of my teenagers have read some of Andy’s books and enjoyed them as well. Check The Traveler’s Gift out. You won’t be disappointed.

  • April says:

    My all time favorite book is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. I have read it at least 4 times. I am hoping to make more time in my day for reading as well!

  • Sherry Van Buren says:

    Esperanza Rising

  • Shannon S says:

    I enjoyed The girl on the train. I just started The Greatest Gatsby because my daughter is reading it for school so I figured I would read it also. It is pretty good! I need that Zip it book!! Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Rayelene Hernandez says:

    Hmmm….it’s really hard to say…I’ve read soooo many books…so I’ll give you a few of my favorites…as a young girl I read EVERY Anne of Green Gables book…I think I wanted to BE Anne…lol…great books that definitely sparked my imagination. My favorite fiction book recently was probably “What Alice Forgot” I loved the storyline and it made me wonder what I’ve “forgotten”

  • Brenda Deibel says:

    Well my newest author I’ve fallen in love with is Ruta Sepetys. I read several of hers, starting with Between Shades of Grey. Her voice on historical fiction opened my eyes to events I never even knew took place. I would highly recommend.

  • Ashli says:

    I am loving the Harry Potter series! I cannot believe it’s taken me 30 years to pick up the first book! I was just never interested in magic type books. It’s so addictive though. They suck you in and you don’t want to put them down. I would say that further along in the series there’s definitely somewhat of a darker undertone so maybe not your pick for the kiddos but if you’re looking for a purely fun fantasy fiction story I really think you’d love them!

  • Jen mc says:

    I’ve been reading through the Bodie Thorne Zion books again and thoroughly enjoying them

  • Jessica S. says:

    I haven’t read much fiction lately, but am currently reading my kids The Little House book series. It is fun to reminisce as we read. I remember reading and watching Little House as a kid and loved it! Maybe you could try them or something you loved as a kid???

  • Celinda says:

    I haven’t read anything in ages! I just never seem to make time for it anymore. I’m thinking about reading The Shack, though. My favorite book of all time is either Gone With the Wind or The Thorn Birds.

  • Ashley says:

    Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver is one of my very favorite fiction boos. (I don’t read much fiction…) If you haven’t read her other book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, you totally should!!

  • Bridget Montgomery says:

    I’m curious what you mean by ” lies of legalism I was entrenched in in the early years of my marriage.” I have no idea what this means. Thanks!

  • Sheri says:

    My favorite fiction book of all time is “Ishmael”, by E.D.E.N. Southworth, published by Lamplighters. I never thought I would read this book because it was so huge and was written in the late 1800’s. Our church librarian recommended it, and I am so glad she did. I wasn’t far into the book before I was hooked. I will warn you that everything doesn’t get “wrapped up” until you finish reading the sequel. 🙂

  • Julianne Keaster says:

    Hi Crystal. 🙂 One of my favorite fiction books is Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech. It’s a Young Adult book, so it’s a super fast and easy read, but I just love the story so much. It’s about a twelve year old girl who has moved from a farm in Kentucky to a suburb in Ohio and how she deals with it. I loved the main message of the story, which is, no matter how a person seems to you from the outside, you will never truly understand who they are, what they’ve been through or what it’s like to be that person, until you have “walked two moons in their moccasins.” I know it’s a bit of a juvenile recommendation, but it’s just a wonderful book. Thanks so much for reading! 🙂

  • Erica says:

    The Nest! It’s such a great read. I started in January reading one book a month and I’ve been reading more than that. With two toddlers it’s hard to find time for me; The Nest was the first book I read this year and it’s just wonderful! 🙂 hope you enjoy it!

  • Candy Smith says:

    Ted Dekker is an awesome author with many Christian Inspirational and Christian Suspense books! My favorite is the Circle Series/Paradise Trilogy(these two are separated but connected is a way,kinda like a spin-off I guess). They have plenty of adventure,some romance and biblical truths that come to life in an amazing way!

  • Jamie N says:

    Francine Rivers, Redeeming Love….couldn’t put it down!!

  • Whitley says:

    I love all the Chronicles of Narnia and The BFG by Ronald Dahl. 🙂

  • Courtney says:

    Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers

  • Jolene says:

    Wonder. It’s actually a kid’s book, but it make me tear up every time I read it to my class. Such a powerful message of kindness.

  • Jennifer says:

    I like books by Terri Blackstock

  • Kayla H says:

    I have really enjoyed anything I’ve read from Tamera Alexander. She writes Christian fiction that is [mostly] set in the south, and they are interesting enough to catch my attention and keep it. And I also love the classic Christian Fiction authors like Gilbert Morris, Janette Oke, Lori Wick, Karen Kingsbury, and Dee Henderson.

  • Elaine says:

    I’m reading the space trilogy by C. S. Lewis. Has slow parts but overall pretty interesting. Start with the first, “Out of the Slient Planet”. I had read all the Narnia books as a child and it’s been neat to look back through them as my daughter is now reading them. But the space trilogy isn’t for kids.

  • Joan says:

    I think you should read WONDER!

  • Kathryn says:

    I’m not usually a big fiction reader! I did really enjoy the Red River of the North books by Lauraine Snelling!
    (Sarah Witcher story was one of our favorites too!)

  • April says:

    Anne of Green Gables is one of my favorites?

  • Jen says:

    I just finished “The Sell” by Fredrik Eklund.

  • Tina McAfee says:

    A fish in a tree – I love a good fiction book with a good moral to the story that is super relate-able and has good teaching moments in it.

  • Jamie says:

    Moving Target by Lynette Eason

  • Haley says:

    I love any book by Ted Dekker! My favorite being Obsessed. 🙂

  • Brandi Kolb says:

    I can’t remember the last fiction book I read to be honest…the last non fiction book I read was The Magnolia Story, which was amazing and I loved it!! If I’m gonna read fiction I generally gravitate towards Amish Christian romance.

  • Lauren Dalton says:

    I could not put down All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Trisha says:

    I really enjoyed Big Little Lies.

  • Brandi Enns says:

    I really liked reading the hunger games books. 🙂 they were really the only books I have really read. And i loved how they just sucked me in and i kept wanting to read more!

  • Alexis says:

    The Voice in the Wind series are my most favorite books of all time.

  • Amie Branson says:

    I recommend Me and Kate. I did not enjoy the book on a personal frame. But the book was so well written and the story was so intense it has made an impact on my life.

  • Kristine Schneider says:

    Crystal, I feed my kids cereal too sometimes. This week alot!

    Fiction books I recommend: Carry On Mr. Bowditch, The Hidden Hand, The Chosen, The Shack, any books by Janette Oke. I’ll come up with some more. My highschool kids have read some great books recommended by Dr. George Grant from Franklin Classical School in TN. We don’t live there, but we watch Dr. Grant via video, and boy have I re-learned history from him!

  • Nicole Lowery says:

    I worked at a book store for seven years and love to read. I love epic books like War and Peace and The Stand by Stephen King but I will read anything. I just love getting lost on someone else’s thoughts. So nice that you are giving away some of your books to brighten someone elses day!

  • Kristine Schneider says:

    I also recommend Ishmael and The Hidden Hand, both by E.D.E.N. Southworth. And yes, read the sequel to Ishmael. Les Miserables, The Chosen, Little Men (sort of the sequel to Little Women), and Pride and Prejudice. These are all books that my high school kids have read through taking humanities with Dr. George Grant from Franklin Classical School in Franklin, TN. We don’t live there, but my kids watch him via video for history. I’ve re-learned history in a way I’ve never learned before!

  • Sheri says:

    I loved Safely Home by Randy Alcorn. It gave me totally new perspectives in certain areas that I had never thought about.

  • Christina G says:

    If you like kid lit, I just finished the Mysterious Benedict Society and LOVED it! Can’t wait to read the next one in the series.

  • Catherine says:

    Highly recommend Jodi Taylor book the nothing girl. All her books are brilliant but something about this book touched my heart . As I was reading it I thought it was a little strange and jumpy but that’s her style (as I’ve now read everything she’s written!!!) .. Reading it the 2nd time I loved it more. Also for a proper tear jerker read Me before you, I know they made a good enough film about it but the ending scene is written so beautifully it was impossible to capture on screen. I’ve re read that scene so many times it was fantastic writing . The book after that – not so good !

  • Christina Ellison says:

    I am reading with my kids right now On the Edge of the dark sea of darkness. We are loving it I highly recommend it.

  • LennyAnn Bishop says:

    Priceless by Luke and Joel Smallbone.

  • Jackie says:

    One of my favorite fiction series is “Tales of the Kingdom” by David and Karen Mains.

  • Kimberly says:

    My all- time favorite book of mine is ” Redeeming Love” by Mrs. Francine Rivers… I have never read a book that tugged at my heartstrings…. It’s a must read!

  • Rebekah says:

    I love the series The Selection by Kiera Cass. I also think Everything Everything by Nicole Yoon is great! It’s being made into a movie that releases in May.

  • Mandy says:

    Redeeming Love is my all-time favorite!

  • Beth says:

    I love old authors and a favorite of mine is Rebecca Caudill. I absolutely love her book The Far Off Land and her children’s books are excellent for reading aloud. I usually find her books through

  • Elisabeth. says:

    I love the Christiansen family series by Susan May Warren.

    Thanks for this post!

  • Amy V. says:

    To Kill a Mockingbird. I can read it over and over and over….

  • Ruth in NZ says:

    I loved Traci Dupree’s “Lake Emily series” ‘A can of Peas’, ‘Dandelions in a Jelly Jar’ and ‘Aprons on a Clothesline’ are lovely books which follow lives of faith which are relatable and challenging.

  • Kimberly says:

    Oh my word…I just found a new author whom I love. The author is Frederick Backman (Swedish author). His sense of humor and characters are just a bit off. His characters are funny, strange, interesting and complex.

  • Beth says:

    I just read the new Alexander McCall Smith book. Loved it! They are great stories.

  • Joy F says:

    Safely home by Randy alcorn, redeeming love by Francine rivers

  • Megan Wagner says:

    Wow, this really spoke to me. I didn’t even realize I needed to hear this. Thanks for your inspiration, Crystal!

  • Eliza says:

    Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult has been my favourite book so far for 2017. I am currently re reading the Anne of Green Gables series.

  • Jamie Colby says:

    The O Malley series by Dee Henderson is a great series about a family finding Jesus Christ as their Savior…wonderful series.

  • Laura says:

    I Love any book by Ted Dekker – my favorite is the Circle trilogy, but the are all so very good.

  • Tershia says:

    I really enjoy Christian fiction books, some of my favorite authors are Francine Rivers and Karen Kingsbury. Consider “The Voice in the Wind” by Rivers if you like historical fiction pieces. Or if you like a modern story try “Angels Walking”by Kingsbury. Both books are the first book in a great series.

  • Rebecca says:

    I love anything Karen Kingsbury. Lately, I have gotten into James Patterson too; just a warning, the language can get a bit colorful. ?

  • Kathy says:

    I own mostly non-fiction books, but would like to read more good, wholesome fiction. Need to loosen up a bit!

  • Darcy says:

    I haven’t read a fiction book in a long time, but I the last one I read, I enjoyed-Pride & Prejudice!

  • Jeanette says:

    Gone with the Wind
    A Fine Balance
    The Mitford Series

    Some of my all time favorites!

  • Catherine says:

    My daughter and I just read Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone together. I was surprised to have enjoyed it as much as I did—now to carve out some time to read the next book in the series!

  • Joanne Pfeiffer says:

    Johnny Tremain – love both children’s literature and historical fiction. This book us hits the target for both.

  • Allesan Armstrong says:

    I discovered Christian author Chautania Havig with a free download and I really like her work! You can download her work frim very reasonably. I think you would enjoy her writing too.

  • jackie says:

    I just don’t read fiction. i haven’t found one that captivates me. The last one I read was The Shack a few years ago and I wasn’t crazy about it. But I would love to win this set of books and promise to read the fiction! I need to try one!

  • Lisa says:

    Some really thought provoking books I’ve read recently include The Husband’s Secret, What Alice Forgot and Defending Jacob. Defending Jacob has a lot to think about as a parent-my book group could not stop talking about it! Happy Reading!

  • Eileen Myhr says:

    I have been rereading some coming of age books that I first read as a teenager. I like revisiting books that I have treasured and these are also great books to share with pre-teen/teenage daughters..A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith and Up a Road Slowly by Irene Hunt.

  • Casie says:

    You should read two by two by Nicolas Sparks! Such a wonderful story that for once I couldn’t predict what was going to happen in the end! Beware it’s a tearjerker!

  • Angie says:

    I loved “Redeeming Love”. It is taken from the story of the prophet Hosea ❤

  • Faith says:

    I love Pilgrim’s Progress!

  • Mara says:

    I only read kid’s books LOL. I really enjoyed reading the Ramona series with my daughters.

  • Jill N says:

    I also like to mix fiction with non- fiction in my reading list! I’m currently listening to Daring Greatly (non-fiction) on audiobook. And once it is finished, I can’t wait to dive into Lilac Girls my next fiction read!!

  • Dawn Sauder says:

    I usually love reading anything by Karen Kingsbury. You could start at the beginning of the “R” series and learn to know, and fall in love with, the Baxter family. Happy reading!

  • Amy says:

    Yada Yada Prayer Group by Neta Jackson, the whole series!!

  • Lauren Shenk says:

    The Last Sin Eater – it sounds odd but it’s such a good book! But the movie is terrible.

  • Kayla says:

    My favorite fiction book is hands down The Name of the Wind!

  • Amanda says:

    My absolute favorite fiction is Dear Mr. Knightley. Love that book, and everything else by that author.

  • Karen says:

    I love the Baxter family in Karen Kingsbury’s books.

  • Katie says:

    It is so difficult to choose a favorite, but one that immediately came to mind was Suncatchers by Jamie Langston Turner. She is such a gifted writer. I love all of her books!

  • Bekah Bowland says:

    My favorite fiction book is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. I am reading The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline right now and it’s good, but some parts are tough.

  • Julie says:

    Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler was a fun read! It’s a modern retelling of The Taming of the Shrew.

  • Marcia Ward says:

    The Francine Rivers trilogy, The Mark of the Lion, is powerful!! She is such a good writer! But, don’t get into it unless you are prepare to cry like a baby!

  • Kara says:

    I really like Veronica Hamilton’s books, I’ve been listening to audiobooks through overdrive and have enjoyed hers.

  • I love reading fantasy, so my favourite has been The Lord of the Rings for a long time 🙂

  • Kirsten says:

    I LOVE the short novel Ehrengard by Isak Dinesen. It’s usually bound with several short stories with the title Anecdotes of Destiny, which includes another of my favorites, Babette’s Feast.

  • Stacey B. says:

    Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers! This is a fictional retelling based on Hosea and Gomer. Awesome love story showing Christ’s love for us. It’s the only book I’ve ever stayed up all night to finish reading. ❤️

  • Rebekah Deedrick says:

    Chautona Havig’s stuff is fantastic. Every genre, but I would start with Discovering Hope.
    Or Cathe Swanson’s Baggage Claim

  • Stephanie says:

    I read the Undoing of Saint Silvanus by Beth Moore and loved it! A real page turner!

  • Amber says:

    I enjoyed reading Ashfall

  • Melissa says:

    I have been reading the Dominion trilogy – I typically don’t like series but downloaded the first book by accident (it was free and sounded interesting). I loved it so much I preordered the second and third – and i rarely pay for books!

  • Beverly Clark says:

    It’s been a couple years since I’ve read it, but one book I loved was The Measure of Katie Calloway, by Serena Miller.

  • Elizabeth Southall says:

    Count of Monte Cristo

  • Allison says:

    Anything by Francine Rivers.

  • Cherry says:

    I just finished reading Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. So good! Nothing written today compares– in my mind, at least!

  • Nicole says:

    Harry Potter is great! And easy to read too!

  • Erin R. says:

    Definitely a secular nonfiction, but a beautiful and beautifully written story is “A Man Called Ove”. It is one of my favorites.

  • Gloria Gouse says:

    Gap Creek by Robert Morgan read it so many times its always my go to book! The writing is so vivid I often end up making biscuits as described in the book.

  • Valerie says:

    Anything by Michael Connelly! He wrote Lincoln Lawyer but there is a whole series out there and a few spin off series.

  • Karen says:

    As a former middle school English teacher, I usually find myself reading children’s literature. If you like the Harry Potter series, try the Septemus Heap series. I can’t think of the author off the top of my nead.

  • Jessica says:

    Redeeming Love by I’m sure you’ve already read it. Great book.

  • Casey says:

    My favorite CS Lewis quote says “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” So with that in mind I would have to recommend The Adventures of Tum-tum and Nutmeg. I read a couple of the chapter books aloud to my boys and I don’t know if Mom or the kids enjoyed them more 🙂 There is just something about these tiny little personified heroes that could possibly live in your walls that captures the imagination.

  • Kathy Tombley says:

    Anything of Joel Rosenberg’s are great! He has several series the first one was the Last Jihad. Love, love, love them!

  • Joan Miller says:

    Well as for a fiction book and you might like to read I have many. I am reading a series that I am purchasing from Guidepost and it is amazing and an easy read. The series is called: Tearoom Mysteries. As for reading just one book and not a series, I would recommend anything by Debbie Macomber. She happens to be one of my favorite authors as well or one written by Amy Lillard (she also has her own blog about Amish country areas that she has visited.). Sorry to say that this is for first time I have read one of your blogs and I really enjoyed what you have to say about daily life and especially the breakfast idea. I remember when my children were young and my son could do lots of things, but since he was the oldest he couldn’t understand why his sister (12 1/2 months younger) could do some things that he couldn’t. Well, I told him that they both learn things at different times and are good at different things. He realized that when he was older and he wasn’t good in sports, but knew the inside and outside of working on a car. Can’t wait to read next Sunday’s blog.

  • Chelsea says:

    I’m more of a non-fictional book reader, but my husband reads the Sherlock Holmes series to me every once and awhile before bed. It’s a fun, unique read! 🙂 Thanks so much for the opportunity of this giveaway. ..what a blessing these would be! 🙂

  • Alisha says:

    I don’t typically read a lot of fiction. I am currently reading The Red Tent for book club, but I am not sure if I love it. One of my all time favorites is Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston.

  • Liz M says:

    Currently Oh Baby the Places You’ll Go…because my 4 month old loves it!

  • Liddy says:

    I highly recommend historical fiction by Brock and Bodie Thoene! Especially the Zion Chronicles series and the Zion Covenant series! SO good!

  • christi says:

    The Testing…. really good! Action, mystery, a great read.

  • Angie Simmonds says:

    The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah Fantastic read about strong women#

  • Gretta says:

    I’m a little behind with my books lately but I enjoyed the popular Hunger Games! ?

  • Kristen says:

    Our family really likes the Harry Potter series. You can read them together and watch the movies after each book.

  • Jamie says:

    I’m still a sucker for good ol Harry Potter! I could read that series over and over and I’m almost 30 now ?

  • kaylee says:

    Les miserables by Victor Hugo

  • Rachel Warner says:

    I loved Redeeming Love or pretty much anything by Ted Dekker. ?

  • Meredith says:

    Karen Kingsbury – The Baxter Family Series 🙂

  • Amanda says:

    Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers…the story of the prophet Hosea and his wife Gomer! Amazing book!

  • Mandy says:

    I’ve honestly loved the Percy Jackson series! I know they are YA books and I’m definitely not a YA anymore haha but I was really really surprised with how funny they are, how much I loved the characters, how engaged and interested they kept me with the plot and action. It’s a 5 book series that left me craving for more. I’m on my second time rereading all 5 books and I love it just as much the second time around. Worth checking out!

  • Julie Harris says:

    When I was little, I read a Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court and that has remained my favorite book… I’m not going to say how many years later 😉 Despite my daughter thinking I used to read to dinosaurs.

  • Cheri Schueller says:

    It’s hard to choose just one fiction book to recommend! I could live in fiction books! For a great story, I would recommend the Blood King Series by Jill Williamson or the Light of Eidon Series by Karen Hancock. Both are excellent!

  • Amber Rivera says:

    I’m a sucker for a good, sappy love story! Anything by Nicholas Sparks is always a good choice.

  • Bethany says:

    Dear Mr. Knightley was my recent fav read!!

  • Linda Anderson says:

    Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. It’s actually non-fiction. But, what do they say? Truth is stranger than fiction. I’ve read it multiple times, AND love IT. yOU WILL TOO!

  • Jennie says:

    The O’Malley Series by Dee Henderson – best. fiction. ever.

  • Jennifer says:

    One of my favorite books is Crime and Punishment!!

  • amber says:

    My favorite fiction book I have read so far this year is Moloka’i. It follows the life of a little girl in Hawaii who becomes a leper. She is banished to a island to live with other lepers. Not only did I learn more about leprosy I also learned more about Hawaii’s history.

  • Melissa says:

    I have A Man Called Ove sitting on my table. Haven’t started it yet. Heard good things about it. I’m hoping it’s good.

  • Andrea says:

    I don’t really read fiction but did read the Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers years ago and really enjoyed them. I would love to win these books though!

  • Tara H says:

    Language of Flowers is one of my favorites even thought it ruined yellow roses for me.

  • Charlotte says:

    Anything by Jodi Picoult but My Sister’s Keeper is one of her best.

  • Karen says:

    The Last Sin Eater by Francine River was one of the best books I’ve ever read…couldn’t put it down!!!

  • Betina says:

    For Silas, to help him ride a bike: Take training wheels and pedals off. You now have a balance bike. Have him practice gliding on the bike. If you have a small incline, even better. In the beginning he may put his feet down every few feet, but that’s ok. Encourage him to go longer distances. When he has mastered this put the pedals back on. This helped both my kids learn to ride a bike.

  • Megan says:

    The Nightingale by Kirsten Hannah

  • Carrie says:

    I loved The Prayer Box by Lisa Wingate!

  • Kristy Chadwick says:

    I read a LOT, including fiction, and the book I loved the most this past year is “A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman. I liked it so much that I bought copies for my friend, cousin, mom, and mother-in-law for Christmas! The title character, Ove, is a quirky and strange curmudgeon. He’s just delightful, and the writing is beautiful.

    Check out what BOOKLIST has to say: “If there was an award for ‘Most Charming Book of the Year,’ this first novel by a Swedish blogger-turned-overnight-sensation would win hands down.”

    Also, I’ve noticed this book in SAM’S club recently for less than $10. Apparently someone is making it into a movie, so it’s been re-released.

    Here are a few reviews I found online that might encourage you:

    Even if I don’t win your books, I really hope you’ll read this book and tell me what you think!!! And that goes for your readers as well!

  • Any Francine Rivers book is wonderful. I have read most of hers, most recently Her Mother’s Hope. Also, I loved The Light Between Oceans. It is not a Christian themed book. It is very thought provoking though.

  • Ebie says:

    Asids from Lewis and Tolkein, Ted Dekker’s books are my go-to series. Start with the Circle Trilogy.

  • Monica says:

    Just read The Magnolia Story by Chip and Joanna Gaines. Loved it!

  • Jing says:

    I have been reading with my six year old daughter Chronicles of Narnia series. Reading with her have taught me to read more, especially books in English even English is not my native language. I love your blog. It taught me so much about life.

  • Kathryn says:

    Absolutely loved The Book Thief and tell everyone they need to read it too!! Thanks for the chance to win!

  • Amanda says:

    So it might not be very cool for an almost 30-year-old mum to admit this, but I’ve really been enjoying YA science fiction recently. It’s light, easy to read, and definitely a distraction from some of the heavier books I’m currently reading.

    I’d recommend either the Artemis Fowl books or a Michael Connelly trilogy called “The Chronicles of the Invaders.” They’re both fast paced and engaging but quick reads 🙂

  • Lillian says:

    I loved This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp. It’s about a high school shooting so it was a difficult read, but it was gripping and I hated having to put it down. So good!

  • Sara says:

    Harry Potter series is my all time favorite

  • Suzanne says:

    I’m rereading To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s one of my favorites and is still relevant today.

  • Julie says:

    Sadly I haven’t read in a while, BUT the last fiction book I read was amazing, Pearl in the Sand by Tessa Afshar. It’s a wonderfully written story of Rahab!

  • Desiree F. says:

    My favorite fiction book series is the Sandman Slim series (science fiction). <3

  • Colleen says:

    I really enjoyed “Jane Bites Back” and the other books in the Jane Fairfax series. They’re certainly different- Jane Austen as a vampire living in the 21st century- but in the best way. This series is quirky, humorous, interesting, and light-hearted enough to make for a quick, enjoyable read.

  • Kandace says:

    Favorite fiction book is a tough call! My favorite is probably Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen. If you’re looking for a more modern fiction, I would look at The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown or Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously by Julie Powell.

  • Rachel says:

    My favorite fiction books that I read in 2016 were All the Light We Cannot See and the Nightingale. Both are historical fiction based on WWII. Both were amazing!

  • Carlie says:

    My all time favorite fiction book is the Cheney Duval series by Gilbert and Lynn Morris. The best!

  • Luella says:

    I love the Agatha Raisin series by M.C. Beaton. They are a good mystery book without all the yuck. Lots of funny snark.

  • Sarah says:

    What Alice Forgot was fun! And The Rosie Project was too!

  • Kathryn says:

    As I look for good read-alouds for my family and pre-read books for my oldest, I have been enjoying everything by N.D. Wilson has put out. For more realism: Leepike Ridge, for magical adventure: The Dragon’s Tooth. He is a Christian father of five, and I appreciate his skill as a writer as well as the good / evil struggle (even within one character) he portrays.

  • Heidi says:

    The Giver series has always been my favorite. I hope you are enjoying it as well!

  • Melissa says:

    I don’t have a recommendation for a fiction book-I read a lot of the free ones from e-reader girl. I love most of them and the variety! Would love to win these books!! WE love reading in our family!!

  • Cynthia Snyder says:

    I’d highly recommend Jody Hedlund’s Hearts of Faith Collection (The Preacher’s Bride, The Doctor’s Lady and Rebellious Heart). All easy reads – historical fiction based on real life women.

  • Heather says:

    Old favorite: Life of Pi by Yann Martell. Great adventure book with layers of symbolism.

    New favorite: Blown Together by Janet Ferguson. Fun Christian romance set in Mobile, AL.

  • Wendy Briere says:

    Harry Potter series or Anne Rice’s vampire series.

  • Lee An McCarthy says:

    It’s hard to pick one favorite, but I really enjoyed Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen.

  • Missy says:

    The princess bride is great as a book and a movie.

  • Jessica U says:

    I have a few favorites when it comes to Fiction. I have always loved To Kill A Mockingbird. It has been consistently in my top 3 since I was a kid. I have also loved anything by Jane Austen, however Pride and Prejudice is one I have read over and over again and I love it more each time. I have been trying to read more lately and just got a really good one from the library last week called The Boy Is Back by Meg Cabot. Definitely not what I would have initially picked for myself but I ended up really loving it!
    Another series I have heard great things about is the Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters!

  • Elisheba says:

    When my daughter was struggling with riding her bike, my husband took the pedals off so she could ride it like a balance bike. It still had the metal part,but the pedals weren’t sticking out so she was able to push with her feet. She was able to develop her balance and was riding her bike within two weeks (like her little brother that was started on a balance bike). Both of our other kids will definitely be on balance bikes first. It seriously makes the transition to pedals so much easier, and honestly more peaceful for the kids. It really might help your Silas. And thanks for sharing about him, it’s a great reminder to just love them through everything!

  • Railey says:

    I’m looking forward to the release of Elizabeth Musser book The Long Highway Home. She is a brilliant and captivating writer! Also, 50% of her proceeds support International Teams’ Refugee Ministries

  • Julie says:

    I didn’t know about Jesse’s medical history. He is lucky to be alive! I delivered twins at twenty-five and a half weeks in 1978. They only lived a few hours. At the time the age of viability was 27 weeks and I believe only a five or ten percent survival rate for them. Jesse must have been strong from the start to beat all the odds against him. So happy he is alive and well today!

  • Kate says:

    I’m always on the hunt for good book recommendations! with a newborn, 4 & 6 year old I’m on a fiction kick at the moment (no brain space for processing nonfiction!). My mother recommended a mystery series by Tammy Hoag and it’s just what i needed. entertaining, captivating…and easy to read in small snippets which is about all i have time for right now. i look forward to trying some of the recommendations here when i have more time to read again!

  • Christina says:

    “Redeeming Love” by Francine Rivers

  • Jess says:

    My favorite books of all time are The Chronicles of Narnia. I loved them all, but my favorite was the Magician’s Nephew. It’s the story of the creation of Narnia and how all of the travels between the worlds began. I loved reading the books as a child, but reading them as an adult is a completely different experience. It’s possible to pick up on subtle spiritual references, life lessons, and profound human observations. These books have had such a powerful impact on helping me understand the nature of God. I highly recommend reading them aloud to your children! It’s something adults and children both can enjoy!

  • Amber Plock says:

    I have loved Janette One since I was a teenager. She writes Christian historical fiction, especially in the pioneer era. “Love Comes Softly” is a good one to start with if you haven’t read any of hers yet.

  • Janne Etz says:

    One of my all-time favorites is A Lantern in Her Hand by Bess Streeter Aldrich. I first read it when I was a teenager, and have reread it a number of times over the years since. It’s about a young pioneer girl who went West as a bride, who had big dreams of what she was going to do in life, but life had other plans. A quote from the book: “It’s funny…I was always too busy filling up the youngsters and getting patches on the overalls to notice that I was part of an epic.” It’s all about a mom doing the best she can, Crystal–something I think is right up your alley!

  • Naomi says:

    You and I think very similarly. I think that you would enjoy the mystery by Louise Penny called still life. Penny writes in the style of Agatha Christie. All the clues are there for you to determine who the murderer is but I have yet to discover the culprit by the end of the books. They are set in Quebec and I have found it fascinating to learn more about that culture.

  • Joscelyn says:

    I recently read ‘Winter Danger’ by Willam O. Steele outloud to the kids. I cried in the end, but I cry easily, the kids laugh at me 🙂 They loved it, yours would too!

  • Cassie says:

    I’m currently reading Shrapnel by Jessica Shook. It just released today and I can’t put it down! It is so beautifully written!

  • Amy says:

    I love anything by Brandon Sanderson, and right now I’m reading the Splendour Falls by Susanna Kearsley. I had a goal of 50 books in 2016, and I read 69! I was going to set my goal at more books, but I have a 2 and 4 year old, and another on the way? I’ve read 9 books so far this year

  • Misti says:

    Small Great Things! Seriously a book I will go back and read time and time again. So beautifully written.

  • Leslie says:

    What Alice forgot

  • Jeni says:


    My favorite all-time fiction book is Safely Home by Randy Alcorn. I think I’ve seen a picture of it on your blog already, but I’ve read it several times and it never gets boring or redundant. It’s a beautiful book and encourages us to look where we are to show the love of Christ in any circumstance, even if it means doing the dirtiest of work.

    On another note, my eldest daughter struggled to learn to read due to an unknown disability at the time, later, at 21yo, determined to be Asperger’s Syndrome. Anyway, she and I were often too focused on what others would say about it taking her so long to read, or ride a bike, or figure out math. And it was backed up by frowns and finger-pointing from others that I must be doing something wrong.

    It took me awhile, but I finally figured out and have often told her that no one is going to ask you as if their friendship depends on, or getting a job depends on, etc., *when* she was able to read, or drive, or learn math, or ride a bike, or just about anything.

    Truly, no one cares *when* we mastered those things. I doubt anyone has even thought to ask *when* we learned those things. It only matters that we’ve learned those things when and if the occasion rises to use them.

    She still struggles with math, still doesn’t drive, but she is the first one to help in any way if needed, or not!! LOL Like your son, she is fantastic with statistics and her focus is on cars. Blows me away what she knows about cars 🙂

  • Christine says:

    Favorite of all time? Hard decision. Most recent was The Book Thief.

  • Julie Rowell says:

    Big Little Lies by Lianne Moriarty
    Her books make me laugh out loud. Big Little Lies is perfect for mothers trying to navigate through the dynamics of their child’s life: school bullying, pressure to keep up with other moms, abuse, divorce, stepparents. All the while trying to solve a death at the school Trivia Night fundraiser.

  • Deborah says:

    I just finished The Nightingale and it was a wonderful book.

  • Misti says:

    Shrapnel by Jessica Shook! Such an awesome story!!!

  • Cheryl says:

    I read Halos by Kristen Heitzmann and loved it. I love mysteries so I bought several of her books and now I am reading Freefall. You should check her out.

  • Cassie says:

    My absolute favorite fiction book is The Prince and the Pauper, by Mark Twain. I loved the (surprising) life lessons I learned from it!

  • Donna says:

    I just finished The Choosing by Rachelle Dekker (Ted Dekker’s daughter). It’s a pretty good Christian suspense novel and the first in a trilogy. It was a pretty intense, but quick read.

    I’m REALLY enjoying the Flavia de Luce mysteries by Alan Bradley! They are so well written. Flavia is the most intriguing 11 year old! It is not a Christian series – if it makes a difference.

  • Amy says:

    Redeeming Love, Francine Rivers

  • Sally mcquaid says:

    I am in love with the Library Lovers book series by Jenn McKinlay. They’re fun and I love the literary humor in them as well.

  • Krysta says:

    I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how important it is for me to love my kids and focus my attention on their needs instead of worrying about what I look like or what they look like to everyone else…so thank you, so much of this post resonated with me.

    As far as fiction goes, I love historical fiction and one of my favorites is The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society…it was so light and fun. Right now I’m reading the Harry Potter series with my 8-year-old son to encourage him to read more and that has also been a lot of fun.

  • Jael says:

    Anything by Francine Rivers, Janette Oke or Tracie Peterson! Thanks for the opportunity.

  • LeAnna says:

    Would love to win some books!

  • Sharla Miller says:

    I love anything by Kristen Heitzmann.

  • Tessa says:

    Not sure if your giveaway is open to Canadians but my favorite fictuon series is The Mark of the Lion by Francine Rivers. I also really enjoyed The Swiss Courier and Chasing Mona Lisa by Tricia Goyer.

    As for Silas, my almost 9 year old still doesn’t know how to ride a bike, skate (big deal in hockey country, though he did reasonably good his first time on skates a couple weeks ago) or tie shoes (his shoes have never had laces so he has never had to learn). My 6 year old doesn’t do any of those things either. My 3 year old, on the other hand, is nearly riding a 2 wheeler. Different priorities and different skill sets. Being stressed about that would be like me being stressed over the fact that my husband can find a stud in the wall by knocking but I can’t. Or the fact that he can drive the vehicle out of a snow bank while I can’t. None of these are necessary skills for life and therefore not worth stressing about. We’re all alive and functioning just fine 🙂

    And praising God for Jesse’s life. What a miracle! My Jesse is only 3 right now but I have seen many friends lose children and have learned to appreciate the little things and just be in awe at the blessing and privilage of being able to tuck my boys in every night and later crawl into bed with my husband. I thank God for every day He gives me with them.

  • leandra Habel says:

    I love reading anything by Charles Martin. The characters seem to have a hard time living with and accepting a troubled past. Usually through the book they develop an acceptance and are able to carry on with the future. All seems to be wrapped in God’s grace. I really enjoy them.

  • Dorcas zimmerman says:

    The help is my all time favorite fiction.

  • Meghan says:

    Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers!

  • Sara Schoonover says:

    While I haven’t had much time to read for myself lately, I’m homeschooling 4 kids and usually just reading with them. I’ve always enjoyed anything by Richard Paul Evans. My favorite fiction author by far! I am trying to make it more of a priority to read and do the things I enjoy 🙂

  • Robin Y says:

    I’m more of a non-fiction girl, but I do love the classics. Sense and Sensibility or Jane Eyre. I can’t decide which is my favorite!

  • Tammy says:

    When Calls the Heart book series by Janette Okes.

  • Glennda says:

    Ugh, I haven’t read in such a long time! I think the last book I read (and loved!) was dear Mr Knightley, but I think you may have recommended that one!

  • Robyn says:

    A Series of Unfortunate Events are some of my favorite fiction. It’s a little dark and sarcastic, but also hilarious and mysterious. And I would imagine would be great for teaching kids about situational ethics.

  • I don’t know if you ever enjoy reading juvenile/young adult fiction, but I honestly do sometimes…just for a change of pace and something different. One book that really stood out to me in this category was “The War That Saved My Life.” It’s a Newberry winner and tells a compelling WWII story from a totally different perspective. It has some heavy stuff in it, heavier than many children’s books, but so relevant to real life for some children. Anyway, there’s my recommendation for you. Or else if you enjoy Christian fiction, I really enjoyed this series by Lisa Wingate – A Carolina Chronicles (I’ve only read the main books, none of the novellas). Here’s the Amazon link to the series –

  • Natalie Schroeder says:

    I don’t think I can pick a favorite fiction book. Right now I’m trying to finish Anne Frank & reading a couple books about baby/toddler play with purpose. We just had a baby & our other children are 10 & 7 so I need to brush up on activity ideas!

  • Sarah says:

    My favorite fiction book I’ve read lately is The Choosing by Rachelle Dekker.

  • Haley says:

    I love to read so I have many “favorite” fiction books! I’d have to say Karen Kingsbury is my favorite author and I really like her books about the Baxter family.

  • Aimee Patrick says:

    I have been looking for a new one too ! This one by Francine Rivers looks good ! A Lineage of Grace …

  • Kelly Lynn Hacker says:

    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. One of the things I love most about this book is how humble the heroine is. The writing of Charlotte Bronte’s sisters is quite different and their main characters can be more fickle. (I’ve never been able to finish Wuthering Heights for that reason.)

  • Berlin says:

    Shrapnel by Jessica Shook!
    I am absolutely loving every bit of it!! I am usually a reader of strictly information books, but after reading her first book (jade can’t be blue) I was dying for her next book to come out.
    Shrapnel. Hands down a must read!

  • Michelle says:

    I love Robert Whitlow…”The Choice”. I also loved Neta Jackson’s yada yada prayer group series.

  • Lisa Huffman says:

    Being a slow reader I’m very behind but I truly enjoyed The Girl on the Train. currently reading Boys on the Boat.

  • Carol Tedford says:

    I love Murder, She Wrote books…like the TV series..I love the TV series too.

    Donald Bain is the author.

  • Nikki says:

    Just got done with Paper towns by John Green, it was pretty good 🙂

  • Christine says:

    If you have yet to read The Shack by William Young, its an amazing and very quick read. Also, one of my favorites is The Princess by Lori Wick.

    As for Silas being “behind” with some things…I was slow to read as a child. Actually sometime in third grade things finally clicked. Fast forward to today, I am now a chemist. And I love reading and writing.

    So remember, it doesn’t matter when he learns these things, it matters what he chooses to do with what he learns.

  • Carmen says:

    I recently found a group that is reading one Christian fiction book a month. I still haven’t read February’s book (yes, I know it’s the last day). In January “Against the Tide” by Elizabeth Camden. I want to go find more of her books

  • Melanie A. says:

    I love Amish fiction, especially the trilogy that starts with “The Shunning” by Beverly Lewis.

  • Christina says:

    THAT STACK! SWOON! 😉 I’m recovering from post-baby fog and am ready to jump back into reading! I know you already follow Modern Mrs. Darcy (because I learned about her blog here 6 years ago!) but her recent list of “Unputdownable” has fueled my current TBR list. ( Pre-baby, I’d most recently loved all books by Liane Moriarty (though that makes me feel very unoriginal..I wish I had a lesser-known gem to share!). Be blessed today! 🙂

  • Emilie says:

    On of my favorite fiction books is “Plain Truth” by Jodi Picoult. I also loved “My Sister’s Keeper” by her.

  • Carol says:

    Anything at all by Karen Kingsbury!! 😀

  • Michelle Riek says:

    My all-time favorite fiction book is “Redeeming Love” by Francine Rivers. Several years ago, I wouldn’t have considered myself a reader. Then, a friend of mine recommended “Redeeming Love” and I literally read it in 3 days. I couldn’t put it down. I remember friends talking about how they would stay up until 2am reading books and I could never understand what they were talking about – well, once I read “Redeeming Love,” I finally got it.

    It’s a powerful story of God’s redeeming work in a woman’s life. There are parts of the book that are hard to read, but it’s still amazing, nonetheless. Since I read that book, I’ve changed my heart and become a reader. I’ve found in the last couple of years that I really enjoy non-fiction – – hearing the lives of others and stories of the difference they’ve made or how God has made a difference in their lives. If you haven’t read this book, it’s a must!

  • Katherine says:

    I really enjoyed the Penny Pinchers Club by Sarah Strohmeyer.

  • Kristan says:

    Everything I never told you by Celeste Ng

  • Janelle Greene says:

    We homeschool and I recently read “The Twenty-One Balloons” by William Pene du Bois. It was really entertaining for the whole family!

  • Alison says:

    Little Women

  • Rebecca says:

    I love And the Shofar Blew by Francine Rivers.

  • Ann says:

    One of my favorite fiction book is still Little Women. I love the way the sisters interact, their love for one another, their play society and newspaper.

  • Katie says:

    I adore the Inspector Gamache series by Louise Penny.

  • Shauna says:

    Would love to win these books! I read mostly non-fiction, but my favorite fiction books are by Francine Rivers. The last two I read were: Bridge to Haven and Scarlet Thread. Thanks for all your content on your page!!

  • Rebekah says:

    When crickets cry. One of my absolute favorites!

  • Rachel A. says:

    When I was young I loved the books Matilda and Little Women, I read both of those books over and over again!

  • Sarah Knox says:

    Hi Crystal,

    I am so not a fiction reader, but it’s one of my goals to add more fiction to my reading list this year (1 in 4 is the exact goal). “Someday, Maybe” by Lauren Graham (yes, of Gilmore Girls). A sweet novel about a young woman trying to make it as an actress in NYC. It’s sweet and charming and on brand with Lauren Graham’s sense of humor.

  • CJ says:

    I don’t read fiction books much but I did recently read A Man Called Ove and I loved it. It had been chosen as a book club book here at my apartment complex then it popped up as a book club read at the local library and then I saw a commercial for it on tv so I made time to read it and was not disappointed. It reinforced for me how often we impact the lives of those around us and don’t even realize it and how much of a blessing it is to us to be of service to others.

  • Cathy says:

    I would suggest The Light Between Oceans. I really enjoyed the book and I am looking forward to the movie!

  • Kandace says:

    I was surprised at how much I enjoyed Allison Pataki’s The Accidental Empress. I was on the launch team for her book, Sisi (which follows the story started in The Accidental Empress), so I read it before getting to Sisi. Historical fiction isn’t normally my thing, but I thoroughly enjoyed The Accidental Empress (more than Sisi).

    Thanks for these fun giveaways! And encouraging posts. 🙂

  • Lillian says:

    I’ve recently started to get back into reading after years of not making time for it. I downloaded Goodreads at the beginning of the year and set a reading goal. And I love it! Unfortunately our local library doesn’t have many of the books recommended for me, but I am currently working on “The Trespasser” by Tana French. So far I like feels like a realistic timeline for solving a murder.

  • Donita Hammond says:

    One of my favorite books is “Kane and Abel” by Jeffrey Archer

  • Susanne says:

    I love the series by Liz Curtis Higgs which is based on the story of Jacob, Leah, and Rachel.

  • Kim says:

    I really enjoyed, The Ladybug Farm series.

  • Estelle says:

    I love reading the Harry Potter Series as well The Chronicles of Narnia. There’s just something about escaping to a totally impossible worlds of wonder.

  • Anne of Green Gables….I’m sure you’ve read it, but it’s such a classic!

  • Gina Bechtel-Hicks says:

    I loved reading The Shack and simply cannot wait to see the movie! ?

  • Rebekah says:

    Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers!

  • Kristen says:

    All Harry Potter books and my all time favorite is To Kill a Mockingbird.

  • Laurie Kim says:

    One of my fave fiction books is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

  • Sarah says:

    I haven’t read as much lately as I used to, but I enjoyed reading Sarah Young devotionals

  • Kim branch says:

    Karen Kingsbury books! I haven’t read one I haven’t loved.

  • Michelle says:

    I just read the Shack and loved it! After reading it I didn’t want my next book to be a disappointment. I ended up reading Miracles from Heaven next and it was good too.

  • Erin says:

    Muscle and a Shovel

  • Dolly says:

    The Lake House by Kate Morton

  • Casie says:

    Well my favs have always been the Harry Potter books, which would be fun to read with your kids 🙂 hmm maybe try My Sisters keeper if you haven’t read it already! It’s so good and makes you ask a lot of questions you would never think to ask.

    Also my son is always a little behind for his age too. He has two cousins that are both a couple of months younger than him and they’ve always done things way before him. I’ve learned that behind is kinda his normal, and he does excel at other things! He isn’t 100% potty trained, but he can tell you all the letters, colors, shapes and knows 1-10 on numbers. Very encouraging post, thanks!:)

  • Michelle says:

    I am David by Anne Holm. One of the best ‘read aloud’ books out there for kids/adults of all ages. We read it while on a motorhome trip last summer and even Driver Dad wanted us to sit close enough to the front of the rig to read aloud so he could follow the story too!

  • Nicole says:

    Hi Crystal!
    So glad you get real and vulnerable with us. Wow! The kids eat cereal-that’s real–and you have a nutritionist. Sometimes we need to stray from the best advice and live life. That’s great! And, it’s like you’re giving me permission to do the same.

  • Charlotte says:

    I don’t have a favorite, but I do love crime mysteries/thrillers.

  • K says:

    The Testament by John Grisham (older one of his…the spiritual side of it suprised me–haven’t read any of his in past decade, so don’t know what he’s up to now).

  • Beth Boswell says:

    I love anything by Adriana Trigiani. I especially love The Shoemaker’s Wife.

  • Chris Bruno says:

    That would be like choosing a favorite child, just can’t do it!

  • Elaine Torgersen says:

    Favorite book is hands down Farenheit 451. It was written in 1953 but some of the stuff in it are a reality now. Like ear buds and tvs the size of a wall. Plus it’s got a great story for anyone that loves to read. 🙂

  • Thalia Miller says:

    I read mostly nonfiction now but I recently started reading a few selections by writers online. I used to read fiction to my kids all the time, including Lemony Snicket, Little House, and Peter Pan. If I find a good fiction book to recommend, I’ll let you know. 🙂

  • Tasha says:

    I enjoy historical fiction and crime/mysteries, and I really liked The Midwife and the Assassin by Sam Thomas.

  • Amanda says:

    I’ve enjoyed Broken Identity by Ashley Williams

  • Patty Stamper says:

    I would love the stack of books. Love your blog and all you do!

  • KALI says:

    I have so many books that I’ve loved! These all look really good too!

  • My favorite books are the Father Tim books in the Mitford series by Jan Karon. Such excellent books and so fun to read. I feel like I learned so much about Jesus from Father Tim. If you have not read the books I encourage you to. I’ve read the whole series twice. Thank you for pointing your readers to God so many times in your posts.

  • Angela A. says:

    I enjoy Liane Moriarty’s books for fiction reads. ‘What Alice Forgot’ is a favorite!

  • Kristen A says:

    The last fiction book I read was The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. Another one I love is The Atonement Child by Francine Rivers.

  • Sara says:

    Love Wonder!

  • Steph says:

    Cheney Duvall series by Lynn Morris and Gilbert Morris. Haven’t read them in many years but remember really liking them. Now I try to read books that will help my marriage, raising kids, being a Godly women, etc

  • Tina says:

    First, Crystal, thank you for your posts, you are a blessing! Concerning the topic, I love to read but I seldom read fiction. Although, two fiction books that come to mind are In this Present Darkness (an interesting display of spiritual battle) and a great read with children is Teddy’s Button (which is a reprint book by Lamplighter).

  • Tomma says:

    My favorite fiction is Gone Girl!

  • Shanno says:

    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn!! Love that book!

  • EMILY H. says:

    I am currently reading American Anthem by BJ Hoff. It’s good so far and am looking forward to finishing it.

  • Tammy Mundy says:

    I have recently started reading again. I’m a busy mom of 2 teenagers and recently went back to work full-time. I have found that reading on my lunch break is wonderful! I’m finding me again! I just re-read The Shack and loved it and am waiting on the movie.

  • Kelly Miller says:

    I just listened to “If I stay,” by Gayle Forman. OMG! Grab the kleenex! It was phenomenal. Working on the sequel, “Where She Went.”

  • JoAnn says:

    I love to read but haven’t had the time to lately. I appreciate the opportunity to win!

  • Brenda says:

    Any book by Francine Rivers, but particularly Redeeming Love!

  • Shelly says:

    My favorite fiction books are Gone With the Wind, The Giver, and Wonder!

  • Alicia says:

    The Complete Daughters of the Promise Collection: Plain Perfect, Plain Pursuit, Plain Promise, Plain Paradise, Plain Proposal, Plain Peace (A Daughters of the Promise Novel)

  • Alyssa says:

    I listened to Dear Mr.Knightly recently and thought it was pretty good.

  • Mandy Jamison says:

    I like to read anything by Nora Roberts. She is a very talented writer and I usually end up enthralled in anything she has written.

  • Kimber says:

    I am loving Only Love Today by Rachel Macy Stafford!!! Any of her books are fabulous!!!

  • Vanessa Leonardo says:

    It’s so hard to choose just one… but I love Walk Two Moons

  • Jamie says:

    Ben-Hur. Such a good story and history too! But mostly, I love that although it’s fiction – there’s a vivid and real portrayal of JESUS throughout!

  • Amy says:

    I just finished reading Magnus Chase with my 11 year old. It’s a fun series by Rick Riordan about mythology. My daughter loves these books and I find them rather entertaining as well. If your kids like Norse Gods, this would be a fun one to share.

  • Janelle says:

    Gardenias for breakfast by Robin Jones Gunn

  • Jennifer says:

    The Shack was a very good read. Just make sure to keep your tissues handy.

  • Terrie says:

    We have been enjoying audio books by Wanda Brunestetter. Her Amish series give us a glimpse into the simpler lifestyle of the Amish. My husband and kids are enjoying them as well. We live in rural WV and spend a lot of time in the car!

  • Ro says:

    An oldie but goody that is a favorite of mine is East Of Eden by John Steinbeck. Another favorite that you could eventually read to your children to teach them some history in an interesting way is A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith.

  • Christina says:

    I have too many favorites. One I’ve read repeatedly and still love is All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque. I’m kind of a dork, and I love historical fiction. I think people should read this one in particular at this point in time to remind us all of the humanity and the tragedy of war. As a military wife, I think it’s important in a time when so few people take on the burden of protecting our country to remember that soldiers aren’t just statistics and 20 second news reels.

    • Jennifer says:

      I read this last year. Powerful. Good recommendation, albeit not a book for entertainment purposes only. Very thought provoking and moving.

  • Anita says:

    The Entire Tolkien Hobbit/LOTR collection. I re- read them constantly. These are actually the few books besides The Bible I actually read over and over again.

  • Christine says:

    I love historical fiction and my faves come from Lynn Austin ?

  • Jennifer says:

    I love the Giver and Throne of Glass.

  • Rebecca Reid says:

    There are so many I don’t know how to recommend one lol.

  • Shalena Douthit says:

    I am currently in love with the author Debbie Macomber!! Current book I’m reading and almost finished with is “Changing Habits”. These books your giving away would be a great addition to my reading obsession. Thanks!!!

  • Sara says:

    By the Great Hornspoon is a great fiction book. I am enjoying The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared, a memoir by Alice Ozma

  • Mandy H says:

    I just recently finished reading one of Melanie Dickerson’s fairy tale series. It was very fun and light. They are spin-offs of different traditional fairy tales. I also like Melissa Tagg, Susan May Warren, MaryLu Tyndall, Lisa Tawn Bergern, to name a few authors! Also, Lindsay Harrel is a new debut author and I really enjoyed her story.

    By the way, I love the Victoria TV Series! Just finished another episode and can’t wait for the next one!

  • Sarah H says:

    I have so many favorites, most of which are classics – Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Jane Eyre are my favorites. I also just read a good book I just picked up off the library shelf as I walked my daughter to the kids section. The Illusion of Separateness. It was a good, quick read.

  • Theresa says:

    I love all of Lynn Austins books

  • Julianna Thompson says:

    I’m loving reading Humility by CJ Mahaney and everything by Dee Henderson.

  • Jennifer says:

    I am a huge Dr. Wayne Dyer can fan and am reading Wishes Fulfilled right now. Love it!

  • Mercy Senger says:

    My favorite fiction books are anything by Jane Austen, Persuasion and Northanger Abbey being my top two!

  • Miranda Reed says:

    My husband knows I love to read,(though I don’t do it often because I read until I’m done with the book, no matter how late I have to stay up. ?) so he will buy me books once in a while. His most recent purchase was Taken by Dee Henderson. It’s kind of a mystery that’s loosely Christian.

  • Wendi says:

    Even though it’s for young adults and I am not lol, i LOVE the House of Night series. It’s about vampires and zombies.

  • This is a favorite from when I was a teenager, the book Detour for Emmy by Marilyn Reynolds.

  • Krystal says:

    Anything by Karen kingsbury. Also the book safely home by randy Alcon. Thanks

  • Just read the nightingale and kitchen house. Both excellent!

  • Amanda Landis says:

    Gone girl

  • Jen says:

    Hubby and I are living the Stormlight Series by Brandon Sanderson on Audible! I’d love to get back into some physical books!

  • Susan Moffitt says:

    Anything from Karen Kingsbury!

  • Kerri Edger says:

    Anything by Charles Martin!

  • Cathy says:

    Old, but not forgotten, is Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster. The modern day version of this story is Dear Mr. Knightley.

  • Sarah says:

    “Gilead” by Marilynne Robinson was highly-acclaimed when it came out years ago, and still doesn’t disappoint. Moves a bit slowly, but beautiful beautiful writing.

  • Kori Buttorff says:

    Though a young-adult series, my favorite fiction series for years now has been the Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld. They are great books that make you think about society and beauty and cultural norms. Though it takes place in the future, some things don’t seem too far off from being real. My husband thought they looked boring, but after I persuaded him to give them a try he really loved them too.

    • Jennifer says:

      I loved the last book in this series. The “Google Glass” one. It still draws me to it as it is so telling of our modern age.

  • Bikendra Van Buren says:

    Redeeming Love….an all time favorite of mine, and even if you have already read it, its well worth another read. I learn something new about myself, everytime I read it!! Stellar book

  • Kristi Alley says:

    It’s hard for me to think of a fiction book! I didn’t realize how many parenting and bible study related books I’ve been reading lately! Let’s see…one of my favorites is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers- also Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult.

  • Lisa Murphree says:

    An older book but one I enjoyed was The Blue Bottle Club. I also enjoyed the series of books by Beverly Lahaye & Terri Blackstock – Showers in Season.

  • Kristen says:

    I just finished Gilead and you might like it. It is fiction that it probably best read slow. Chewing on a few passages at a time. For more story driven fiction that you don’t want to put down, go classic and read LM Montgomery’s The Blue Castle. A story of independence and unexpected love growing over time.

  • Hillary A. says:

    The Chronicles of the Kings series by Lynn Austin is amazing! (Biblical historical fiction)

  • Jennifer says:

    I recently read Sensible Shoes by Sharon Garlough Brown and it inspired me to be more intentional in practicing the Spiritual Disciplines.

    My favourite set of stories I go back to time and again are the Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries by Dorothy Sayers. We own all of them, I think my favourite is Murder Must Advertise.

  • Sabrina says:

    Sullivan’s Island by Dorothea Benton Frank
    It is a good fiction book packed full of family, fun and mystery; set in Sullivan’s Island, SC. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  • Julie Schneider says:

    My Antonia by Willa Cather

  • Tehila says:

    An amazing fiction book is Philippa Gregory’s ‘Fools’ Gold’. Wow! Blessings to you, sweet Crystal! <3

  • Jodi says:

    My favorite fiction books are anything by Francine Rivers. Her books are always so thought provoking.

  • Sara says:

    Jojo Moyes “Me Before You” – have you read it? I’ll warn you – it’s a tear jerker (keep in mind, I’m 25 weeks preggo LOL), but it’s also an amazing love story and an empowering story about the gift of life and living it to its fullest.

  • Janet says:

    The Immortal Nicholas by Glenn Beck. No politics or santa clause. I really loved this book. It was well written and historically fact at no to me.

    The Shape of Mercy by Susan Meissner

  • Jennifer says:

    Last year I read The Tender Years by Janette Oak, after getting it free for Kindle. I ended up loving it, and read the whole series! (Prairie Legacy Series)

  • Lisa says:

    Pride and Prejudice

  • Cookie Austin says:

    Jester by Jane’s Patterson and Andrew Gross or Goss it is full of of adventure and suprises

  • Michelle says:

    I do a lot of reading, but realize how little fiction I read….. ummm, Charlotte’s Web. ?

  • Robyn says:

    My favorite fiction book is “What Alice Forgot”. Made me really stop and think about how I treat my husband and what my younger self would think about who I have become! Good stuff!

  • Rachel says:

    I’m currently reading Goodnight June by Sarah Jio.

  • Raquel says:

    It would be really hard for me to pick a favorite fiction book, since there are so many good ones.

    I already recommended Kindred by Octavia Butler over on a Facebook post of yours as a recent fiction story I enjoyed (very emotionally tense, but good).

    Another one I really enjoyed recently was Redshirts by John Scalzi. You might have to be Trekkie to really get into it, but I loved the way it played with the fourth wall.

    Other favorites include:

    Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (urban fantasy, a little dark in spots, pokes at the idea of ‘forgotten people’ who slip through the cracks in society)

    The Pathfinder series by Orson Scott Card (one of the best authors, and since this is a young adult series it gets *slightly* less weird than some of his other books)

    The Lunar Chronicles series and Starbound series (both YA sci-fi/fantasy, which is my favorite genre, but these were particularly well done, with excellent characterization)

    The Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde (Written on the premise that the worlds inside of books actually exist and can be traveled into–and have to be protected from villians who want to ruin them. You probably have to enjoy British humour to really get into this series though.)

    Jane Eyre, Northanger Abbey, Scarlet Pimpernel, Freckles, Laddie, Michael O’ Halloran and many other classics could also make this list…

  • Amber says:

    Girl on a train. By far my favorite!!

  • Katy Campbell says:

    Redeeming Love, Big little Lies, pride & Prejudice. 🙂