Friday, December 25, 2009

Books Read 2009

Froggymama's Grading System

no stars: don't bother sister
*pretay good
**pretay, pretay good
***if you don't read this, you're crazy
****read this or you can't come to my birthday party


NON-FICTION

The Tipping Point - by Malcolm Gladwell***

Stumbling on Happiness - by Daniel Gilbert***


FICTION

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle - by David Wroblewski***

The Shack - by William P. Young

The House of Mirth - by Edith Wharton****

Jane Eyre - by Charlotte Bronte****

Loving Frank - by Nancy Horan*

The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint - by Brady Udall*

The Red Tent - by Anita Diamant****

Survivor - by Chuck Palahniuk***

The Skin of the Lion - by Michael Ondaatje***

The Time Traveler’s Wife – by Audrey Niffenegger***

Eye of the Needle – by Ken Follett**

The Shadow Catcher – by Marianne Wiggins***

The Hour I First Believed – by Wally Lamb****

Bel Canto - by Ann Patchett***

Perfume – by Patrick Suskind***

Case Histories – by Kate Atkinson***

The Help – by Kathryn Stockett***

The Shanghai Girls – by Lisa See***

The Elegance of the Hedgehog – Muriel Barbery (will read before the year is up)


MEMOIR

The Middleplace by Kelly Corrigan***

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls****

Three Cups of Tea by David Oliver Relin and Greg Mortenson****

Without a Map – by Meredith Hall***

When You Are Engulfed in Flames – by David Sedaris (still reading)***


SELF-HELP/RESEARCH

Buddha never raised kids and Jesus didn’t drive carpool – seven principles for parenting with soul – by Vickie Falcone**

When Things Fall Apart “Heart Advice for Difficult Times” – by Pema Chodron****

The Addictive Personality “Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior” – by Craig Nakken***

The Case for Faith – by Lee Strobel**

The Five Love Languages – by Gary Chapman***

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People – by Stephen Covey***



This was a great year for reading. There are a few books I read that had a huge impact on me. So if you're looking for something to rock your world, these are my selections in order: Three Cups of Tea (it will change the way you think of world politics and relations, if Greg Mortenson doesn't win the Nobel Peace Prize, tis a shame), The Red Tent, (A story about Rachel and Leah, and the many wives of Jacob. It's a delicious novel about women working together to raise children and support one another.), The Glass Castle (I can not stop thinking about the characters in this memoir, it is just too insane to be real, and beautifully written), Jane Eyre (One of the best stories I've ever read), and finally, When Things Fall Apart (a book about leaning into the pain, really facing and accepting life - highly recommend!). Happy reading! And please let me know what books you couldn't put down.

7 comments:

holly said...

Yay! I love your reading lists. I've actually read a couple of these. The Red Tent, and The Tipping Point. The Tipping Point was a soc/psych class requirement back when I was studying sociology, loved it. The Red Tent was for leisure years ago. Loved it also! Looking forward to Jane Eyre and maybe Seven principles for parenting with soul. Your ratings weren't so high for that one though. Have you read any parenting books that you love? It's hard to find good parenting books.

p.s. how do you find the time???

Froggymama said...

Holly, Actually, I really did like Parenting with Soul, it's just that self-help is never THAT fun, so I didn't give it a super high rating. But I do think it's worth reading for sure. Email me your address and I'll send it to you. I also liked "The Happiest Toddler on the Block." I have that one too I can send you. Media mail is super cheap and I love sharing my books! And I find the time while Froggy is doing treatment. She watches videos and I read. Probably horrible parenting, but it keeps me sane. And definitely read Jane Eyre. It is the best.

Angela said...

"The Red Tent" is one of my favorite books of all time, and I adored "The Glass Castle." Great list!! Love the rating system. :)

The Country Mouse said...

My little peanut watches videos during treatments, too. I don't think it's bad parenting. You do what you gotta do, man.

Cara said...

We have very similar taste in books, Elise! I've read 12 of the books on your list. The Red Tent is one of my favorite books, only topped by Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers.

Anonymous said...

I love your reading list! There are two books though that I've graded differently...

In the Skin of the Lion is one of my very favourite books of all-time. I've read it several times, and so give it a full four stars ****, if not more!

Edgar Sawtelle though... I'm sorry, but I found it to be one of the worst books I've read this year (Hamlet in a dog kennel, at what, 900 pages?!)! No stars from me. And definitely not in the same league as In the Skin of a Lion...

The best books I read this year were Elegy for Easterly, and The Book of Ebenezer LePage -- they were the most popular books with my bookclub too.

As for Three Cups of Tea, I appreciate the commitment of Greg Mortenson, but find it curious that the work of others in the field are not even mentioned in passing (for example, the Aga Khan Foundation has also built many schools in the Northern Areas)...

-monika

Froggymama said...

Monika,

I agree that "Edgar Sawtelle" definitely wasn't 'literature' and "The Skin of the Lion" inspired probably the most interesting discussion our book club has ever had. It was incredibly well-written, but these days, I'm such a sucker for a page-turner. I don't know if it's parenthood or exhaustion, but sometimes I prefer a cheesy Hamlet in a dog kennel to 30 pages of a man swimming through an underwater tunnel. I haven't quite stooped to Danielle Steel, but sometimes I just love a juicy novel that may lack literary genius, but is all plot. I think it must be why I prefer "Law and Order" these days to Independent Film. In fact tonight, I'm off to see a chic flick with my girlfriend. Mindless drivel is just what the doctor ordered! But I agree, "Skin of the Lion" is far superior. Even if Oprah disagrees. :)