Emmanuel at Home Morning Prayer on July 26th was all about books. “Reading for Hope: A Book Report Wrapped in a Homily” was the morning’s message for grownups. And “Happy Reading: A Children’s Homily” was my weekly offering for younger members. Each concluded with my invitation to listeners to bring a book to share with others at Zoom Coffee Hour.
A book you’ve read. A book you are reading. A book to recommend.
Wow! I was blown away by the response! Good thing I had asked Chuck to be the stenographer as I hosted the online conversation. No one came empty handed. Everyone — including little guys — brought books – and many brought more than one!
And books of all kinds: novels, fantasy, history, science, biography, memoir, humor, picture books and more. It was abundantly clear how deep and broad and high parishioners’ reading stacks are!
All reading is holy reading, lectio divina, I believe. And it seems that everyone who shared was reading for hope.
I promised to share them in my “Weekly Bibliotherapy” piece in the Thursday weekly parish e-news. Even better, I thought to turn it into this blog post. This way, even if you were unable to join us, you can check out the reviews and share.
With no further ado, here is the awesome list! Click on the title to check it out. Besides buying books online, consider checking your local library’s electronic book services, or purchasing from your favorite indie book shop.
Reader: Grace Pratt
Recommended: Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen
Reader: Beth Boland
Recommended: Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christopher Moore
Recommended: Citizens of London: Americans Who Stood With Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour, Lynne Olson
Reader: Bonnie Fairbank
Recommended: Lucille: The Life of Lucille Ball, Kathleen Brady
Reader: Jode Willingham
Recommended: Churchill’s & Malta’s War: 1939 – 1943, Douglas Austin
Reader: Hayes Willingham
Recommended: Me Talk Pretty One Day, David Sedaris
Reader: Laura West
Recommended: A Place in Time: Twenty Stories of the Port William Membership, Wendell Berry
Recommended: That All Shall Be Saved: Heaven, Hell, and Universal Salvation, David Bentley Hart
Reader: Phil Kasik
Recommended: The Body: A Guide for Occupants, Bill Bryson
Reader: Amélie Cagle
Recommended: God’s Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible, Adam Nicolson
Reader: Ryan Fitch
Recommended: The Inner Voice: The Making of a Singer, Renee Fleming
Recommended: Running with Scissors, Augusten Burroughs
Recommended: Workin’ It! Ru Paul’s Guide to Life, Liberty and Style, Ru Paul
Reader: Taylor Craig
Recommended: The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, His Holiness the Dalia Lama XIV & Bishop Desmond Tutu
Reader: Nancy Dupree
Recommended: Meet Me at The Museum, Ann Youngson
Reader: Lola Beggs
Recommended: Fall of Giants (Century Trilogy #1), Ken Follett (There are two more in this series.)
Reader: Chuck McCoart
Recommended: The Hiding Place, Corrie ten Boom
Reader: Bridget Flaaen
Recommended: Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving and Finding the Church, Rachel Held Evans
Recommended: The Gifts of Imperfection, Bréne Brown
Reader: McKenna Flaaen
Recommended: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling (Volume 1. McKenna has read the whole series!)
Recommended: The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell, Chris Colfer (Volume 1. McKenna has read several more!)
Reader: Peggy Conner
Recommended: The Lighthouse (Volume 1 of St. Simon’s Trilogy), Eugenia Price
Reader: Katherine Conner
Recommended: Becoming, Michelle Obama
Reader: Patty Vance
Recommended: Father Melancholy’s Daughter, Gail Godwin
Reader: Nan DeRenzi
Recommended: The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz, Eric Larson
Recommended: A Game of Birds and Wolves: The Ingenious Young Women’s Secret Board Game that Helped Win WWII, Simon Parkin
Readers: Adam & Amy Schildge
Recommended: Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (on Audible), James McPhearson
Reader: Adam Schildge
Recommended: The Ghost Map: The Story of London’s Most Terrifying Epidemic — And How It Changed Science, Cities and the Modern World, Steven Johnson
Reader: Theo Schildge
Recommended: myOn Digital Library – Educational Online Reading Resource Service for Schools. (Theo has read about 100 books!)
Reader: Cece Schildge
Recommended: But No Elephants, Jerry Smith
Wow! That’s 45 books to add to your list — not counting trilogies, sequels and series!
— Joani, July 2020
The Rev. Joani Peacock, Editor for Emmanuel Voices: A Parish Blog