52 Book Challenge (2015)

Definitely not going to reach my goal of 52 books this year but I think I can read 26 before January 1.  Believe!

21. Big Magic: Elizabeth Gilbert Okay, I didn't read this ... I listened to it on audiobooks.  GREAT GREAT GREAT inspiration for anyone who needs a creative spiritual lift. I may buy this one and keep it as a favorite to read again.

20. Olive Kitteridge:  Elizabeth Strout Great read. Fiction.
19. Stolen Innocence: Erin Merryn Great read. True story of a girl who escaped the fundamentalist Mormons. I'm a little obsessed with anything Mormon ever since I traveled to Utah last winter. This book as a good read but hard to read at times. Just hard.
18. The 360 Degree Leader:  John C. Maxwell  Let's just say I learned about this author in August and I cannot find fault with any of his writing. His teachings can be used in any walk of life and I can hardly wait to read more of his work/
17. The Maxwell Daily Reader: John C. Maxwell  Love this daily (365) reader. I've been emailing the 2 page daily read to a friend and we've both benefited from this book. It's one to be read again and again.
16.  Don't Manage Your Time -- Manage Your Life: John C. Maxwell:  Very short little book packed with great advice. I'm on to his next book now! (Oct. 2015)

15. Funeral for Horses -- Catherine Ryan Hyde: I did not love this book. It was weird and hard to follow. I found myself speed reading so I could just get to the end of it. (September 2015)

14. The Long Steep Path: Everyday Inspiration from the Author of Pay It Forward -- Catherine Ryan Hyde:  Loved this book. Short stories about many hikes the author has taken and her thoughts on it. I'll be reading this one again, no doubt. Just downloaded a novel she wrote called "Funeral for Horses".  It's next in line and I can hardly wait to start reading it.  (September 2015)

13.  10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works -- A True Story by Dan Harris: Great book that I will possibly read again about the value of meditation. There is a paragraph in the book that totally took me by surprise where he is a couple of days into a 10-day silent retreat. He finally surrenders to meditation and upon hearing a unfamiliar sound, open his eyes to a hummingbird right in front of him. I cried. Going on a silent retreat has been on my bucket list for a long time. This book just moved it closer to the top of my list.

12.  Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg:  I read this at the suggestion of a speaker I heard recently. Some great ideas in this book. I think I read it at the right time in my life. I'd recommend it to progressive thinkers.

11.  Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker:  Great book. Took me two weeks to read it, sitting for 30 minutes every morning to knock out a chapter or two. Great accounting of this author's career developing the science of profiling. It is gruesome in places but well written. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves true crime writing.

... I just decided ... just now ... to reverse the order of adding the books I'm reading to this list.  It's my blog, I can do what I want.  LOL!

10.  Leaving the Hall Light on by Madeline Sharples:  Great read for those who are interested in how mental illness and suicide impacts a family. Ms. Sharples writes in a what it was like, what happened and what it's like now format. It is a compelling read. Took me a week to finish it. On to the next book! I'm not giving up.

I am taking the challenge to read one book a week in 2015.  It is a lofty goal but I think it can be accomplished by setting aside of the distractions that are like junk food for my brain.  I'll come here and list the books I've completed with a short review.
  1.  "Fields of Grace" by Hannah Luce with Robin Gaby Fisher:  This is a true story of a young woman who is the lone survivor of a plane crash, suffering burns on 28% of her body and lungs, losing two dear friends in the most horrible manner death imaginable. 4 stars
  2. The Husband's Secret by Lian Moriaty:  3 stars.  It was okay. I'm not a big fan of this genre but it was an easy read and it came together nicely in the end. I read it because everyone else was reading it. (finished 01/3/15) 
  3.  Ruthie: A Family's Struggle with ALS by Lynn Miclea: A journal of one family's struggle with the diagnosis of their mom. Quick read. (01/04/15)
  4.  Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn:  I loved the writing in this fast-paced thriller. Now I want to see the movie.
  5. Walking Home: A Traveler in the Alaskan Wilderness, a Journey into the Human Heart by Lynn Schooler  I hope Lynn Schooler keeps writing. I finished The Blue Bear a couple months ago and this book I had only partially read and picked up to finish recently. His writing is so personal. I have this in hardback and it is one of the few books I will keep and read again just for the sheer pleasure of reading his words. Loved it!
  6.  Gerald's Game by Stephen King   LOVED IT! I haven't read a SK book since Delores Clairborne. I've been too afraid. This book had me hooked from the first chapter and something happens in the middle that made me gasp outloud in sheer terror. Love when that happens.  (02/22/2015) I'm a little behind in my goal.
  7. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn:  I love this woman's writing style. Can't wait to read "Dark Places".  Visual and easy to read. 
  8. Find the Good by Heather Lende:  Great little book that will be a favorite for gift giving. This author lives in a small town in Alaska where I went to high school. She is an obituary writer for their local newspaper and an author of two other wonderful books as well as a featured write in a women's magazine and I believe the Anchorage Daily News. I feel like I know this author and how she thinks. Finding the good in every situation takes practice and she's perfected it!  Read it, you won't be sorry. 
  9. Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin I read this author's first book The Happiness Project last year before I started this challenge. I love her writing style and her way of thinking. Better Than Before is a great follow up to her first book. If you are little OCD like me, you'll love both books.
JUNE UPDATE:  I'm so behind in my challenge it isn't even funny. I knew 52 books would be a lofty challenge but the thing about me is that I won't give up. If I even read 25 books, I'll feel like a winner.  You can take that to the bank!


  1. Wow. How did I not know you had this going on too? I have not read any of the titles but almost read Gone Girl. I gave up on Stephen King after Dolores Claiborn too. I wrote to him afterward, but of course he never wrote back. In my letter I thanked him for slaying THE monster of all monsters, and confessed that I no longer needed to read another SK book.

    Read on!

    1. I'm likely not going to make it to 52 books this year but I'll tell ya ... I've read more already than I have in the last 3 years. I've got a groove going with my reading time and I am lovin' it! I loved Dolores Claiborn ... and the movie. The guy who played the dad gives me the creepers every time I see him in something now. SK has a great mind!

  2. we are going to vegas sunday (Joanne and me)..taking kindle and reading and reading. Nancy

    1. You read more than anyone I know. I love that about you!


Things I'd Do If I Had An Endless Bucket of Time: Part 1

I have a good friend who works in the trades which means she works when there is work and she sits it out when there isn't work. I thin...