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The 5 Books I Read the Past Two Weeks + a Movie We Watched

Welcome to my weekly Book-ish post where I share what I’ve been reading and watching recently. If you missed it, you can see my Reading Goals for 2018 and 44 Books I Plan to Read This Year

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Well, I didn’t quite hit my goal of reading 3 books per week the last two weeks, but I read 5 books, so I’ll celebrate that! (Oh and I had planned to post a book post last week and that just didn’t happen… thanks for your patience!)

1. Sacred Rest

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it. It addresses rest from a very different perspective than other books I’ve read on this topic and I loved how it wasn’t just about getting more sleep or slowing down or taking a Sabbath.

This book is written by a doctor and I thought the author’s medical background shed a lot of wisdom on the topic of rest and how being well rested impacts our lives. However, what really stood out to me in this book was the author’s differentiation between the types of rest we need — physical rest, mental rest, emotional rest, spiritual rest, social rest, sensory rest, and creative rest. I had never heard rest and our need for the different kinds of rest broken into these categories and I found it very insightful.

In fact, it helped me to understand why I can feel drained sometimes — even if I’ve been getting plenty of sleep. I might not be rested in other areas such as getting creative rest or sensory rest or social rest.

And I loved the practical suggestions that the book gave for ways to recognize which kinds of rest you are lacking in and how to get more of each kind of rest in your life.

2. How I Became the Fittest Woman on Earth

Since you all know we’re big fans of CrossFit, I’m sure you’re not surprised I enjoyed this book! 🙂 If you love CrossFit, you’ll find this book fascinating as it gives the behind-the-scenes peek into the life and training of one of the most well-known women of CrossFit: Tia-Clair Toomey.

Her story is interesting, surprising, and inspiring. I love that her husband is her coach and I love that she talks so openly about her failures and struggles. In addition, she shares candidly about her workout routines, training regimens, nutrition, recovery, and more.

Note: This book has quite a bit of language in it.

3. The Journey Back

We read this book aloud together because it’s the sequel to The Upstairs Room — the true story of two Jewish girls who had to go in hiding in a house for two years during World War II.

We didn’t enjoy it as much as The Upstairs Room and I would love to know more about how the story played out in the years to come, but it was eye-opening to think of how hard it must have been to rebuild your life and community after the war. The books are firsthand accounts and the writing style is a little weird and sometimes hard to follow.

Note: Both of these books have crass language in them. I edited some of it out as I read.

4. Jesus, My Father, and the CIA

I got this book because I enjoyed the author’s other book, Chasing Francis. It was a little hard to follow and felt like some sections had filler content to reach the word count. But other parts made me laugh out loud or feel deeply with the author. Overall, it gives a very compelling account of the ravaging impact an alcoholic parent can have on their children and the entire family.

5. The Shape of Mercy

I listened to this audiobook (thanks to the free Libby app!) and really enjoyed it. Well, I don’t know that enjoy is the right word, because it was a sad story. But it’s well-narrated, engaging, and doesn’t end like you expect.

The author does a fantastic job of addressing the atrocities of the Salem Witch Trials while challenging us to really think about how we perceive people and how we can often judge people based upon those perceptions. I fell in love with the characters and didn’t want it to end!

We watched The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society movie this past week. I loved the book so much and didn’t know if I wanted to watch the movie. The movie made me want to go back and read the book… because I read it so long ago that I can’t remember if the movie follows the book and went way off script. And now I need to go back and read the book again to find out! 🙂

When I Find Time to Read

People are always asking me how I find time to read. Honestly, it’s because I love to read, because I’ve chosen to prioritize it, because I don’t have a lot of other hobbies, and because I can’t not read. Also, when you love something, you usually can find ways to get creative to find time to fit it in — even if it’s in the little nooks and crannies of life.

I wrote a post on 3 ways to find more time to read — even when life is busy. And here are 7 more ways to find time to read.

What did you read and watch this past week? Any books or movies or shows you really think I need to read or watch?

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  • Jennifer says:

    This week I read “Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder” by Caroline Fraser. It looks a lot longer than it is since the notes section is so long.

    Really interesting book about Laura’s life, as well as her parents’ backgrounds and her legacy as a writer. The Little House series made several changes to cut out the most depressing bits of her life.

  • Need Anap says:

    I think that’s the best way to watch a movie based on a book – enough time has passed that you’re not sure if something is different or left out. 🙂

  • Linda says:

    I had seen The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society when it made its rounds at the library, but hadn’t read it. I was on Netflix and saw the preview for it, so I borrowed it and read it in one day. I loved the book. The movie was quite different, but I was able to enjoy it too. I love Lily James!

  • Beth says:

    I received a copy of Guernsey for my birthday and just finished reading it (late to the show, I know). I didn’t even realize there was a movie so now I am excited to watch it. Thanks!

  • Patty Murphy says:

    I just finished reading The Guernsey book and loved it. I found the Netflix movie and couldn’t wait to watch it. They changed some but I still thought it was very good and my husband enjoyed it also.
    This is my favorite post you write all week and I look forward to it. I’ve recently started reading again and one book you had highly recommended I started with, Dear Mr Knightley. I loved it and got hooked again on reading. I’m always looking for good suggestions of things I might enjoy.

  • Monica says:

    We loved that movie! It is rare that I am interested enough to actually finish a movie. That is an ongoing joke among my family members.
    I’m jotting down a few book titles to add to my list. Thanks for sharing! I just finished reading Girl Wash Your Face.

  • Katy says:

    This week I finished Hudson Taylor’s autobiography. I had read Hudson Taylor’s Spiritual Secret, and loved it, but the autobiography had some things in it that I don’t think were in the other one. Very challenging!

  • Jackie says:

    I too really enjoy this post! I always add to my evergrowing book list after reading your suggestions!
    I am almost finished with Guernsey now and love it! The movie was different but still really good!

  • Maria says:

    The Rhythm of Life by Matthew Kelly-it was an inspirational yet practical book on how to become “the best version of yourself. “ I loved it !

  • Hope says:

    I am finishing up a book written by Bruce Henderson, “Sons and Soldiers”. It is about young Jewish boys that escaped Nazi-occupied Europe. These boys were either drafted or joined the US Army. They were trained as one of the Army’s greatest secret weapons. They were known as the the Ritchie Boys. I truly enjoyed this book and all the details about the lives of these men.

  • kara owen says:

    If you’re going to revisit “TGLAPPPS” then I suggest the audiobook. It has a cast of readers (not just one) and is sooo well done

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