This Is Me--2024 A to Z Theme

My A to Z Themes in the past have covered a range of topics and for 2024 the theme is a personal retrospective that I call "I Coulda Been" which is in reference to my job and career arc over my lifetime. I'll be looking at all sorts of occupations that I have done or could have done. Maybe you've done some of these too!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Holiday Reading List: 2010

            Christmas holidays are indeed a busy time for most of us, but if you are like me you probably have some extra down time that you can set aside for reading.  Since I'm driving this year and not flying like I usually do, I won't have much free travel time to read.  However I'll probably have some relaxation time in the motels at night as I trek across country.

             During my visits with family I know I'll be busy having a good time with them, but since I tend to rise early I'll undoubtedly have time for quiet reading since I won't have a computer to distract me.  And it's probably not going to be constant hustle and bustle.  I'm  sure I'll have those moments during the day when I can read a page or two or even more.

Here are the books I'm taking with me on my Christmas Vacation:

          Flannery: A Life of Flannery O'Connor by Brad Gooch -- I started on this one in September and I want to finish this up first.  It's a biography of one of my favorite authors.  If you've never read any of O'Connor's work, you really should treat yourself to it.  She is most noted for her short stories.  They are dark, funny, and bizarre.

The Shack by William P. Young --- I had never really intended to read this somewhat controversial book, but some family members read it and really liked it and said that I should read it as well.  I have a negative opinion from what I've heard about it, but I want to read it so I can discuss it with those who have read it.                                                      

        Burning Down the Shack (How the 'Christian' Bestseller is Deceiving Millions) by James B. De Young--  The Shack inspired so much controversy that books were written about the book.   I want to read another side of the argument.
Finding God in the Shack by Roger E. Olson  -- This book was sent as a companion study to The Shack.  Maybe I'll read this if I'm not "shacked out" by the time I get to it.   I'll see how interested I am in the topic after reading the other two books.
Ice Cold by Tess Gerritsen -- This is a book that sounded like it had an interesting premise.  It looks like a quick easy read that will be a time-passer during lulls in the festive events of the season.
Owen Fiddler by Marvin D. Wilson -- We know this author as The Old Silly.  I won this signed copy from Marvin after the Beware the Devil's Hug book tour.  I want to read this on the way home so I can do a fresh review on Tossing It Out after vacation.

  Perilous by Tamara Hart Heiner-- I promised that I would eventually  review this one when I hosted a stop on Tamara's book tour.  I'm hoping to have this review up in early to mid-January. 

     This might sound ambitious, especially for a slow reader like me.  But I figure I might as well set my sights high.  And who knows when that extra reading time may come along and I need books to read.  And if I somehow finish these, I still have a lot of books left at my mother's house that I never got around to reading when I was in high school and college.      

     Have you read any of these books?  If so what did you think of them?   Are any on your 'to read someday' list?     Do you have any special books that you are planning to read during the holidays?



  1. I haven't read any of those - although there are a couple I'd put on my list. I'm REALLY hoping for some down time to read during the holidays - it's been crazy chaos around here lately and I've hardly had any time ... or sleep!

  2. THE SHACK is a publishing hit all over the world, including my own country. It also started a trend of similar books, so even I had to translate one tittle of that kind earlier this year :) I liked CELESTINE'S PROPHECY much more that THE SHACK.

  3. The only one that I have read Arlee is "The Shack". I am not an avid reader but this book most definitely held my interest from the get go. That is one of the reasons that I am not a huge reader as my husband is. It has to get me within the first two pages! Terrible I know but not impossible!
    Good luck on your reading endeavor!
    Love Di ♥

  4. I really liked The Shack despite what some say. It is a great book!

  5. What an eclectic reading list--I'm impressed! I need to find or replace my missing copy of Flannery's The Complete Stories. Thanks for the reminder!

  6. Alex -- Just have to see what all the praise is about concerning this book and come up with some discussion points.

    Jemi -- I would highly recommend Flannery for writers since it's about a modern writer's life.

    Dezmond -- I didn't realize that The Shack was a worldwide bestseller. I really liked The Celestine Prophecy movie, but haven't read the book.

    Diana -- My mother said the same as you. She usually doesn't read much either, but she was sold on this book.

    Fredamans -- I'll read it and then I'll do a review about what I thought.

    Lisa--I like to rotate my reading to keep variety. I'm missing my complete Flannery stories also and I'd like to find it. Her stories are worth rereading and it's been years since I've read any except for "A Good Man Is Hard To Find" which I have in a compilation. I reread that story not ago--it is such a great story.

  7. R-LEE BOID ~
    I had never even heard of "The Shack", so I just now read the entire Wikipedia page related to it.

    Although my opinion could conceivably change after reading it (which I'm not going to do - so I guess, in fact, my opinion CANNOT really conceivably change), the plot just sounds like a plain silly, typical, and essentially superficial story with all the usual elements that attract the silly, typical, and essentially superificial people of our times. We have an abduction, a murder, a mystical experience, and modern crime lab forensics coming in at the end to identify the culprit. I mean, heck, wasn't this a TV show or something? It all sure sounds familiar to me. Is there even ONE original idea in this story? If so, they failed to mention it on Wikipedia.

    It sounds like Carlos Castaneda meets Neale Donald Walsch's 'Conversations with God' meets CSI Bumphuhk, Iowa. Doesn't ANYONE have an original idea anymore, or have they all been used up now, which explains why we have to keep remaking the old black and white movie classics and turning cartoon characters, super heroes and TV shows into movies?

    But what gets me the most is that a million or more self-professed "Christians" who have still not read The Holy Bible even once from cover to cover, will choose to read "The Shack" instead. It's just like that "Left Behind" series. More supposedly "serious-minded" Christians read all of the books in that series than have ever read God's Book from Genesis to Revelation. It's all "A Great Sadness" if you ask me.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  8. StMc -- It is for the reasons you mentioned that I want to read this book and the other books associated with it. Certain members of my family were so taken up by The Shack that I was a bit concerned because the way you described it was similar to the impression I had gotten about the book. I would not have planned reading this book if it hadn't have been for my family members who praised it. I agree with you about the "Great Sadness".

  9. I love Tess Gerritsen's books. Have a great vacation.

  10. Ambitious? I'll say. Haven't read any of them. I'm currently reading Best Food Writing of 2001 edited by Holly Hughes. I picked it up at a used book fair...and until I did wasn't really aware that "food writing" is a genre. I'm reading some great stuff...albeit ten years old. Just goes to show you never know what you might like.

  11. I did read The Shack, and I thought it was interesting, and it did hold my attention. Like Dezmond, however, I thought Celestine Prophecy more intriguing.

    Reading is high on my list for the next two weeks as well. I'm taking a week off from blogging and plan to use that time to snuggle in my reading chair, a cup of herbal tea and maybe a pumpkin scone or a couple of biscotti nearby, and enjoy.

  12. That's a lot of books! Funny, I hadn't heard of The Shack because I live under a rock, but I went and sought some info. My read of reviews was that Biblical purists and literary types don't like it (the first for the alternate interpretation, the second for second-rate writing) and others really liked it. I will be interested to hear your take.

    I've got a stack of pre-published stuff to get to (my beta reader pile and my own editing) so I suspect I won't be reading anything formally published for a while.

  13. My stack is so big, I wouldn't know where to begin...

  14. How are you going to get through that amount of reading????? Are you going to bypass Christmas?
    Seriously Lee, Boxing Day I may pick up a book as Christmas Day will be with the grandchildren.

    Thanks for your lovely comment.Much appreciated.
    though some followers have mysteriously disappeared.

    Take care and safe travels.

  15. I've never read any of those, although I do want to read Perilous at some point.

  16. I’ve read and enjoyed Owen Fiddler. I think I'd enjoy a couple of others in your stack, too. I’d probably skip all the Shack stuff though, but will be interested in what you have to say about the books.

  17. Carol -- Haven't read any of her books before. You have a great Christmas as well.

    Liza -- I enjoy reading the restaurant reviews and food columns in the newspaper. I don't know about a book, but if it's well-written it could be good.

    Patricia -- Your situation sounds very conducive to some quality reading time. Enjoy!

    Hart --It sounds like you will be very productive during the holidays.

    L.Diane -- I began with these. I've got a few hundred more to get to after that.

    Yvonne -- I may not finish, but I've got the books just in case. Hope you find your lost comments and enjoy your holiday season.

    Golden Eagle -- I'm looking forward to Perious

    Jane -- Owen Fiddler is a high priority so I can get the review up in January.

  18. Hi Lee,
    That's a great list you've got there...hope you get a chance to read through them all! I too am looking forward to the holiday season for the same reason - this is one of the few chances I get to sit down and read whatever I want just for the pleasure of it. I've got quite a few lined up for myself and I took the liberty of ordering away on Amazon the other day...needless to say I am anxiously awaiting them in the mail!
    Hope you enjoy your books!

    -Vanessa from Optimal Optimist

  19. Haven't read any of them, although a few sound like they'd be up my alley....
    I'll be honest and admit that, right now, I'm reading a bit of a guilty please book: "Mogworld," by Yahtzee Croshaw. A sort of comedy-fantasy-video game kind of thing.

    I know -- I'm terrible.

  20. I noticed the 'shack' theme, too. :)

    Nice list. I have a pile of books written by friends I have to get through before buying more.

  21. That is one big list, Lee. I'd say you are setting your sights high.

    Sorry I'm late been shoveling ice. You have a safe and wonderful holiday.
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  22. That does seem rather ambitious Lee but I like to keep books on hand for down time as well. I haven't read any of those. My sister has read The Shack but I just hadn't been drawn to it. Hope you and your family enjoy a Merry Christmas.

  23. I've not read or heard of any of these. Santa has a list of books to put in my stocking and while I'm not the world's fastest reader either I think I get through about one a month on average. I once only once read a book in 4 hours and another in 4 days (accompanied by a stomach bug)Hope you get through all those books and enjoy them. :O)

  24. Wow - great to see one of my novels, Owen Fiddler, on your reading list! I read "The Shack" and really enjoyed it. Great book, in my opinion, but many 'traditionalists' when it comes to Christianity do find it 'controversial'. I'd be interested in your impressions after reading it. Also might check out "Burning Down The Shack" just to see what kind of thought precesses are behind those who find The Shack so controversial.

    Have a great reading Holiday, Lee!

    Marvin D Wilson

  25. Wow, I have to admit the whole Shack business passed me by! I'll be really interested to see what you make of it.

    Have a great Christmas!

  26. Vanessa -- And good reading to you.

    Andrew -- Always the clown!

    M Pax -- Yes, I want to understand this "Shack" phenomena.

    Jules --Please get rid of that ice. I'll be driving in that area in the next few days.

    Wanda -- I would probably never have been tempted to read The Shack if my sister hadn't read it and raved about it so much.

    Madeleine -- Realistically speaking it will probably be difficult for me to read thru all of these.

    Marvin -- I gotta figure out why this rage about The Shack-- readers do seem rather divided on it.

  27. Aimee -- It's been a few years since it was on the charts and all. I'm just behind on things.

  28. Wow. You might get shacked out. My guess is you will pick up on any of the obvious points of contention just by reading the novel. I'd read it and see before purchasing a book about the book because it might save some time/cash.

  29. Interesting list Lee. I am reading Jesus Interupted by Bart Ehrnan right now. I find it REALLY fascinating. Not for those who dont want to be challenged.

    Lots of wisdom in that book.


  30. Hi Lee-I have the Shack stacked in my pile. I have had it for awhile, but haven't read it yet.
    I hope to find time, but lately not much free time! I like that you are prepared! You will have to fill us in!

    I miss the days of road trips! enJOY~

  31. I haven't read any of them Arlee. I know where to come if I run out of books to read! Happy Christmas.

  32. I know several people who've read The Shack and loved it, but I haven't read it.

    BTW, I have an award for you over on my blog!

  33. Hi Lee .. I've just finished Steve's Breakthrough - and need to do some notes for him on it .. & I have a plethora of books to read .. all sorts! I must get in the habit of reading regularly .. I'd like to read Old Silly's book - sounds really interesting .. & I have a list to buy .. sometime!!

    Enjoy your time away .. and settle in and read a bit more than usual ... cheers Hilary

  34. First of all, I'm blown away by all the comments on your post. Wow! What a following.

    You say your list sounds ambitious. Well, yeah. Hope you have a little time left for your family. Anyway, my favorite on your list is A Life of Flannery O' Connor. I'd love to learn the story behind the stories.

    The Shack was okay, though hardly one of my favorites Three books? Well, you might want to space them out a bit.

    Good luck with your reading list and Merry Christmas.

  35. I haven't read any of the books on your list Lee, but I look forward to seeing your reviews on some of these titles.

  36. I didn't like The Shack. I don't get what all the fuss is about, honestly.

  37. I'm reading the Shack right now, actually. I'm about half way in and thus far, I've found it much more appealing than what I thought it would be. I'll be posting a review on my blog once I'm done. I can't wait to read your review as well.

    Scribbler to Scribe


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