When I have time, I love to curl up with a good book. Truth be told, time got away from me in 2015. With four kids, a dog and a blog, my goal was illusive and I didn’t read as many books as I wanted to, but I did enjoy some great stories! Come see which ones!
Where do I find my good reads? Good question! Well, I am fortunate to have a dear friend, who is an avid reader and she always has plenty of good recommendations. Or sometime I get a lucky and a new release is available from the “Lucky Day” section at our local library. In the case of The Inspired Room, a fellow blogger – Allison from Painted Summers, visited my Pinterest page and knew I’d enjoy it, so sent it to me as part of a gift exchange. What a delightful and very thoughtful gift!
There is a lot of variety and vivid storytelling in these pages, so enjoy my Favorite Books 2015 reading list!
Favorite Books 2015
The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown
Overview – For readers of Unbroken, out of the depths of the Depression comes an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times—the improbable, intimate account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin what true grit really meant.
What I liked – The characters were so well developed. Most had a tragic story of hardship during the depression, but given their grit and hardwork, also of triumph in Berlin. The main character, Joe Rantz, has an especially tragic story that draws you in. The book also takes place in the NW, where I live, so it was especially interesting to know some of the landmarks and geography that the story revolves around.
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Overview – From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.
What I liked – There is no doubt in my mind why this book took ten years to write, it has such rich detail and history. It also has has such lovely and enchanting metaphors. Although a bit slow in the beginning, the intertwining stories of the main characters are brilliantly written and played out.
How To Blog For Profit: Without Selling Your Soul by Ruth Soukup
Overview – Whether you have been blogging for years or just a few weeks, How to Blog For Profit (Without Selling Your Soul) offers solid advice and practical action plans for creating an authentic, successful, and profitable blog.
What I liked – Rush Soukup is a writer who is informative and engaging, the book never lagged. She has the experience to tell it like it is in the blogging world and provide valuable and practical advice. Lots of good nuggets! A must read for new and experienced bloggers for sure.
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
Overview – In a quiet French village, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France … but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When a German captain requisitions Vianne’s home, she and her daughter must live with the enemy or lose everything. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates all around them, she is forced to make one impossible choice after another to keep her family alive.
What I liked – Quite possibly my favorite read last year. With the backdrop of WW II, the history is rich and captivating, but the story of two sisters that take different paths for their survival during the war, is what really engrosses you.
The Inspired Room by Melissa Michaels
Overview – New York Times bestselling author, Melissa Michaels, will inspire you to make your house a well-loved home. Her relatable style, unique voice, and practical decorating ideas have made her highly respected blog, The Inspired Room, a haven for fans of real-life style.
What I liked – I really liked Melissa’s practical design advice….it was so relatable (I actually have the ottoman she has!), plus there was an amazing picture on each page. Could her dogs be any more adorable?? Her design style and color palate is perfect for finding design inspiration for my home.
Secrets of a Charmed Life by Susan Meissner
Overview – Current day, Oxford, England. A young American scholar, eager to pursue her vision of a perfect life, interviews Isabel McFarland just when the elderly woman is ready to give up secrets about the war that she has kept for decades…beginning with who she really is. What Kendra receives from Isabel is both a gift and a burden–one that will test her convictions and her heart.
1940s, England. As Hitler wages an unprecedented war against London, hundreds of thousands of children are evacuated to foster homes in the rural countryside. But even as fifteen-year-old Emmy Downtree and her much younger sister Julia find refuge in a charming Cotswold cottage, Emmy’s burning ambition to return to the city and apprentice with a fashion designer pits her against her sister Julia’s profound need for her presence. The sisters are cruelly separated, and their lives are transformed…
What I liked – Grabbed from the very beginning, I couldn’t put the book down. I liked the family dynamics between a single mother and her daughters who were raised so differently. All the characters were richly and vividly drawn. Also, there was a great cadence in the book between 1940s England and current day.
Looking at the list of my favorite books of 2015, I notice that love and war were dominate themes and made for some dynamic and rich storytelling – that makes sense because I love historical fiction 🙂 . This was balanced by books that teach and inspire – which makes sense because I love to learn. Overall, an eclectic, but fantastic mix!
I can’t say I was as inspired by the movies of 2015, but that’s for another post 🙂
What were your favorite books of 2015? What are you reading now?
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