thirty-one books I should recommend more often

Reading books together
Indoctrinating the younger generation.


Nine out of a hundred. Mum posted an article listing 100 books you should read before you are 20 to Daniel’s timeline (an insightful and inspiring list, I will add), and I had read nine stinkin’ books out of one hundred.

Seriously, people?!

How can this be? How can I have failed so miserably?! I’m a homeschooler who learned to read when she wasn’t even four – I’m supposed to succeed at every reading test ever put past me!

I then went back and realised that when she listed a series of books, each book in that series counted towards the 100 books. On a recalculation, I had actually read 42 books out of 100, which is actually quite a nice number. Ah. It’s okay, I’m secure again. Haha.

Even before I read this list, I was planning to write this article anyway. I love to read, though I haven’t made or had much time in the last few years. There are so many good books out there to read, and so many things to learn!

As I have chatted about books with a friend of mine, I’ve given a couple of recommendations. It started me thinking how I kind of have two sets of book lists; the good book list, and the me as a broader person booklist. The first list entails the harder-going books, the thinking books, or the ones I’ve recommended my whole teen life. They include Do Hard Things, He Chose You, Don’t Waste your Life, Anne of Green Gables, and The Hiding Place. They are wonderful books, but I get staid in recommending them. The second set of books are treasures I’ve picked up along the way – some are well-known, but some are undistinguished or overlooked titles. Some are hard going, and others will crack you up. They might make you cry. They might unexpectedly change the way you look at the world and bring a breath of fresh air.


So today, I’m not going to give you my ‘good book list’. Here is my other list, my books. Without further ado, in no particular order, and assuring you they are not the only thirty books out there that took my fancy:

  1. No Compromise by Melody Green
  2. Choosing to SEE by Mary Beth Chapman (book review here)
  3. I Would Die for You by Brent and Deanna Higgens
  4. Rachel’s Tears by Beth Nimmo and Darrell Scott
  5. The Next Story by Tim Challies (book review here)
  6. The Gallipoli story by Patrick Carolyn
  7. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
  8. The Way I Was Made by Chris Tomlin
  9. The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis
  10. Mere Christianity by CS Lewis
  11. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (book review here)
  12. Enemy Brothers by Constance Savery
  13. Tahn series by LA Kelly
  14. Yada Yada books by Neta Jackson
  15. The Last Sin Eater by Francine Rivers
  16. Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers
  17. Winnie the Pooh and The House at Pooh Corner by AA Milne
  18. Everyday Deserves a Chance by Max Lucado
  19. Shopping for Time by Carolyn Mahaney, Nicole Whitacre, Christine Cheesemore, and Janelle Bradshaw
  20. The Great Turkey Walk by Kathleen Karr
  21. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
  22. The Toothpaste Millionaire by Jean Merill
  23. Shadow Spinner by Susan Fletcher
  24. The Golden Goblet Eloise Jarvis McGraw
  25. Christy by Catherine Marshall
  26. Me, Myself, and Bob by Phil Vischer
  27. The Door Within and Duncan Ross books by Wayne Thomas Batson
  28. Jane of Lantern Hill by LM Montgomery
  29. Baby Island by Carol Ryrie Brink
  30. Little Women by Louise May Alcott
  31. Billabong books by Mary Grant Bruce

I could keep going. I could include the ‘good’ book list. They deserve to be up there. But for the purpose of keeping things fresh, I left them behind. What are your books? What are your favourites, that might not look like the ‘greats’ and classics, but are some of your obscure treasures nonetheless?

3 thoughts on “thirty-one books I should recommend more often

  1. Good list Jess – as I read through it I could remember your responses to each book – these books certainly affected you when you read them – that is a good criteria for a book list.

  2. I love reading, and wish I could read much more than I do these days!!
    Some of my obscure faves that I highly recommend:

    *Reach For The Sky by Douglas Bader.
    *Crying Wind, by Crying Wind-Stafford.
    *Dr Doolittle books by Hugh Lofting.
    *Biography of Pocahontas, (can’t remember author or exact title.)
    *Currency Lass, Margaret Reeson.
    *Jungle Doctor series, by Paul White
    *Swiss Family Robinson
    *Cullenbenbong/Green Mountains, Bernard O’Reilly
    *Braver Men Walk Away, Peter Gurney
    *Eight Cousins, or the Aunt-hill, L. M. Alcott
    *Cross and the Switchblade, David Wilkerson.

    I could share a dozen more but that will do for now!! Good post Jess. 🙂

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