19423_10206576787165106_1520447760895515137_nBy Lisa Huddleston

I have not been writing at all. It distresses me more than a little, but as I’ve considered it I realize that I have not been spending my time in vain and have been devoting a large percentage of it to my first love—words. (You know what I mean, dear husband. Not as much as I love you!)

As I write those words, I laugh remembering a time when I blurted out around a Wednesday night church supper table that “I love words!” First there was silence. Then odd, smirky smiles. Then a chuckle and an “I’ve never heard that one before.” Ah, I know you loved me, but I’m a hard one to understand apparently.

But back to the words. No, I haven’t been writing, but I have been reading with an unquenchable thirst. Fiction, nonfiction, trashy (in a clean sense) and classic. Philosophy. Psychology. Theology. Just about whatever comes my way. I cannot seem to get enough words.

Rabbit trail warning: On the flipside of that, I am morosely tired of negative words. (Is that even a possible condition?) You know the kind I mean. Stupid words. Hate-filled social media crap. (Insert smiling pile of poo emoji. I love that one!) Really, people? Please, think before you post. Didn’t anyone teach you that if you can’t say anything nice about someone then you shouldn’t say anything at all? Ugh.

So anyway … I know it is bad for a blog to lie still for so long, but my stillness is not an unproductive one. It is a time for refilling, recharging, and rethinking—even some difficult relearning.

Here’s my recent reading list in no particular order. Don’t judge. I’ve enjoyed it all in different ways!

11265026_10206585692147725_8078798616832399983_nFor lighter reading (not a denigrating assignation at all–just an easier read):

  • The novels of Liane Moriarity—I think I’ve consumed nearly all in the last few months. Girl stuff that makes me laugh out loud as I see myself and my friends in every story.
  • The Miss Peregrin’s Peculiar Children series by Ransom Riggs. Odd, quirky, and delightful reading—can’t wait for the next installment.
  • The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho is celebrating its 25th anniversary edition, and I just got around to reading it. I think I would have liked it more 25 years ago, but it was still a good read for an older chick like me. “To realize one’s destiny is a person’s only obligation”—hmm, well maybe?

And for the heavier I-really-love-words stuff:

  • I finally met Wallace Stegner and have greatly enjoyed both Crossing to Safety and Angle of Repose. How did I not know about this author and these novels? They both grabbed me right in the heart, squeezed tightly, and let go with a deep-felt sigh.
  • I read My Sunshine Away, by M.O. Walsh for the little book club I’m in and love that although it deals with a disturbing incident of childhood rape, it oddly managed to make me feel more positive about real life and ordinariness.
  • The Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown literally is a gift. I first heard her thoughts in a TEDtalk and immediately identified and fell in love with her unassuming way of looking at shame (cringe) and imperfection. Great, great stuff for an imperfect perfectionist like me!
  • Ann Patchett is another author I had not read until fairly recently—a Nashville girl and another voice I recognize deep in my heart. Bel Canto and State of Wonder are thought-provoking and caused me to consider who I would be if I were not comfortably perched in my safe and familiar nest.
  • Finally, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression by Andrew Solomon. Whew!

What’s next? Well, I have a couple of possibilities waiting in the wings and will be getting a new book club assignment on Monday (yay!). The Analytic Theist by Alvin Plantinga is one I have nibbled on and will be eating in small bites throughout the next few months, and The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt will probably be the next novel I read—maybe this weekend or next week.

So, come on now–spill. What’s on your reading list for the summer? If my appetite continues as is, I will need to know! Because, yes, I LOVE WORDS!



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