40+ Days of Reading and “Carry On, Warrior” GIVEAWAY

Since I used Lent to refrain from blogging, I found myself with a lot more time to read. Maybe I should have used that time for household duties, but whatever. Bygones. The kitchen stayed a little messy and I might have re-worn my jeans a few times. It was totally worth it. I’d love to share with you my opinions of the treasures I found.


The Husband’s Secret, Liane Moriarty
It was a cute read, but truth be told, I figured out the “secret” pretty quickly. Sometimes I need a good story with little thinking. This fit the bill.

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane, Neil Gaiman
Oh, Neil Gaiman, you freak me out. Every. Single. Time. I really have to psych myself up to read a Gaiman novel, but his writing is so imaginative, artistic, and okay, creepy he somehow reaches my soul in his storytelling. It’ll be a while before I read another, but this one will keep me thinking for a long time.

Mockingbird, Katherine Erskine
I’ve been hooked on YA novels lately, so I haven’t been picking up children’s books as much as I used to. I’m so glad my friend, Kristi, handed me her recommendation. The story takes us into the brain of a girl with Aspergers; a world of black, white, and no grey. The book is so well written, it had me hooked from the first chapter. The great thing about children’s fiction is that I finished it within a couple of hours. I will definitely be handing this down to my own daughters, but would pass on the recommendation to you, as well.


Jesus Feminist, Sarah Bessey

Sarah’s blog is on my must-read feed, but I hesitated picking up her book. I believe in the church feminist movement, I just really didn’t think the information applied to me. After all, I grew up in a church with women pastors. I was woman in ministry for much of my career. I didn’t need to be persuaded.

After reading the book the responses to it, I realize how in the minority I am. Now that I’m aware of the second class treatment most women receive in houses of worship, it makes me want to stand by my sisters who want more for themselves and their churches. 

Stitches, Anne Lamott

Ms. Anne wrote this book of hope in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting. In days when we think all hope is lost and this world is going to hell in a hand basket, Ms. Anne will find a thread of hope. 

I love everything Ms. Anne writes. She tells stories I think are written just for me – but really, we are all so screwed up! Reading this book she reminds me we get through life day by day, stitch by stitch.

When We Were On Fire, Addie Zierman
Oh, MAN, was this story convicting! Addie grew up a youth in the 90s, a time when the evangelical church wanted to make Jesus cool. I was not a youth in the 90s. I was a youth minister. 

I was the one taking teenagers to Christian concerts and rallies and wearing Jesus t-shirts. I was the one who handed out WWJD bracelets and met them at the flagpole for prayer. I didn’t work for a conservative evangelical church. (Obviously, my gender prevented that role. See Jesus Feminist thoughts above.) But, still, there was a ton that resonated. 

Pick up Addie’s book and read about her faith struggles. If you were a youth in the 90s, I bet you’ll relate. If you are older like me, you’ll get a brief glimpse of why so many Millennials have left a church family.

Pastrix, Nadia Boltz-Weber
In a day when books and blog posts are about everyone leaving the church, I am refreshed to hear about a women running toward religion. Reading Nadia’s story I was reminded of the beauty in church. I love how transparent she is with her life before her pastoral career and her honesty in leading her current congregation. Of all the authors I’ve read lately, she is the one with whom I’d love to have coffee. Scratch that – I need a whole dinner. I have too many questions.

Carry On Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed, Glennon Doyle Melton
Glennon writes Momastary, my favorite blog on the internet. If I’m overwhelmed with internet anger, I know I can click on her site to find inspiration and love. Always. Even when she’s frustrated about the same things I’m frustrated with – there is love.

Her book tells tales of her life before kids, life with kids and how frustrating just living daily life can be. However, Glennon will always discover some aspect of beauty to be found. She calls life “messy beautiful”.

To celebrate the release of the paperback edition of Carry On Warrior, Glennon asked bloggers to share a snapshot of their “messy beautiful” lives. You can read my contribution here. But the best part of her celebration? 

YOU can win a FREE copy just by COMMENTING ON MY BLOG!

How cool is this? One lucky commenter will win her/his own copy of her/his very own. 

Here’s the deal:

I’ll be traveling soon and I need books to read. Comment below with the name of your favorite book to read on an airplane. That’s it! Write a comment on this blog post and you’re entered to win “Carry On Warrior”.

The contest will be open until this Thursday, April 24th at 11:59pm. On Friday, I’ll announce the winner (randomly selected) and this copy of “Carry On Warrior” will be on it’s way!

***4/25/2014 Congrats to Laura Taylor for comment #7. You big bloggers may have your random number generators, but I went old school here: 

*Links are affiliate links


  1. Heather says

    I feel lonely here… I love reading and rereading anything by Francine Rivers. Have you read all the books on women in Jesus' lineage. Good stuff!

  2. Steffanie S says

    This book sounds like something I could wrap my mind around. I rarely seem to find the time to devour a novel…but this seems like something I could pick up when time presents itself. And I have heard of her blog. Maybe I should check it out. Who can't use a little encouragement now and then? Thanks, Andee.

  3. says

    Andee, my ears perk up whenever someone asks for book recommendations (I work in a library) so seriously, come to me any time. Here are a couple I think you'll like:

    Found by Micha Boyett (not just for mothers, or women, I cried a lot).

    Annie Dillard's Encounters with Chinese Writers (timeless. Out of print. You should have your library track it down for you, or buy one for pennies on amazon).

    Eat with Joy by Rachel Marie Stone (I read this on an airplane. It's lovely, all about food from a Christian perspective, a lot of different angles).

    I am the Messenger by Markus Zusak (by the author of the Book Thief, a lovely, mysterious YA novel that was so enjoyable, I couldn't put it down).

    Let me know if you need more!

  4. Jane Halton says

    I am someone people ask to borrow books from when they go on holidays! Great question.
    Hysterical: David Sedaris – Me Talk Pretty One Day (I don't know you well enough to recommend this but whatever, it is freaking hilarious!!)
    Amazing story telling: Jhumpa Lahiri – Unaccustomed Earth (She wrote the Namesake which won Pulitzer)
    Non-fiction – Wally Lamb (yes, the fiction writer) Couldn't Keep it To Myself (Amazing stories of incarcerated women)
    Christian book that you haven't mentioned in above post: Barbara Brown Taylor – Altar in the World

  5. Katie Matheny says

    Ok so if you just want something light – I love the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evenawich. Something more heady- "when helping hurts"

  6. Laura Taylor says

    Orphan Train is my current read. Historical fictions of sorts with family dynamics thrown in there. Quick and a great story.

  7. Mary Forsberg says

    Andee I love your creativity!
    If you're looking for something that has mystery, intrigue, love and a little fun in the sun…something that could bring a tear or make you laugh out loud here are a few of my favorites: The Beach Club (Elin Hilderbrand), The Hypnotist's Love Story (Liane Moriarty), The Violets of March ( Sarah Jio), Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons (Lorna Landvik) and I'm about to read The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver) it comes highly recommended by my sister and yes it takes me out of my genre!! Happy reading!

  8. Deborah Beddoe says

    I have a very hard time reading on airplanes…I just want to sleep and wake up THERE. But if the flight was too long for that, I'd take a Dorothy L. Sayers mystery along in my purse. 🙂 Also, I'm about 90 pages in to Carry On Warrior & it's really good. I like Momastery for the reasons you mentioned, too. And I've enjoyed some of the "back story" as I was a latecomer to her blog.

  9. Stephanie Elizabeth White says

    My book recommendation for you is "Calling the Rainbow Nation Home" by E.T. Sunday. Spiritually moving & faithfully confirming.

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