books read 2012.

I started using Goodreads this year, mostly to keep track of what I read since I didn’t keep a list in 2011. Now I can’t figure out how to get the titles over here, so it turns out I am still going to have to type them anyway. Goodreads, I shake my fist at you!

1. Leaving Church by Barbara Brown Taylor
2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
3. Still by Lauren Winner
4. Shine by Lauren Myracle
5. An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown Taylor
6. Walking on Water by Madeleine L’Engle (a re-read)
7. A Circle of Quiet by Madeleine L’Engle (a re-read)
8. Between Heaven and Mirth by James Martin
9. The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection by Alexander McCall Smith
10. Girl Meets God by Lauren Winner (a re-read)
11. Wild by Cheryl Strayed
12. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (a re-read for work)
13. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (a re-read for work)
14. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson (a re-read for work)
15. Saving Jesus from the Church by Robin Meyers
16. Some Assembly Required by Anne Lamott
17. Insurrection by Peter Rollins
18. Grace for the Good Girl by Emily Freeman
19. One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
20. Introverts in the Church by Adam McHugh
21. Take this Bread by Sara Miles (a re-read)
22. Angry Conversations with God by Susan Isaacs (a re-read)
23. Are You My Mother? by Alison Bechdel
24. Christianity for the Rest of Us by Diana Butler Bass
25. Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhoda Janzen
26. The Quotidian Mysteries by Kathleen Norris
27. Miriam’s Kitchen by Elizabeth Ehrlich
28. You Take it From Here by Pamela Ribon
29. Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall
30. The Irresistible Revolution by Shane Claiborne
31. The Spiral Staircase by Karen Armstrong
32. Let’s Take the Long Way Home by Gail Caldwell
33. Fun Home by Alison Bechdel
34. Reading the Bible Again for the First Time by Marcus Borg
35. A Twist of Faith by John Donnelly
36. The Heart of Christianity by Marcus Borg
37. A New Kind of Christianity by Brian McLaren
38. Messy by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
39. Dakota by Kathleen Norris
40. Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead
41. Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed
42. A Ring of Endless Light by Madeleine L’Engle (a re-read)
43. Creating with God by Sarah Jobe
44. Playground by 50 Cent
45. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
46. A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans
47. Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof
48. Torn by Justin Lee
49. The Kingdom by Tom Hardin
50. A New Evangelical Manifesto by David Gushee
51. The Awakening of Hope by Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove
52. Christianity After Religion by Diana Butler Bass
53. Joseph’s Grace by Sheila Moses
54. Keeping the Feast by Milton Brasher-Cunningham
55. Stalking the Divine by Kristin Ohlson
56. The Modern Magnificat by Jennifer Dault Harris
57. To Dance with God by Gertrud Mueller Nelson

I also read The Fault in Our Stars by John Green and Still by Lauren Winner a second time.

I read 43 non-fiction books this year. I generally read a lot more fiction than non-fiction, but this year I was preparing for the Glen Workshop and got so many recommendations there that I couldn’t stop reading non-fiction. My list feels particularly revealing this year for that reason.

My favorite books of the year were, in no particular order:

Leaving Church and An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown Taylor
Still by Lauren Winner
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed
Saving Jesus from the Church by Robin Meyers
The Quotidian Mysteries by Kathleen Norris
Miriam’s Kitchen by Elizabeth Ehrlich
Reading the Bible Again for the First Time and The Heart of Christianity by Marcus Borg

My least favorite was Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhoda Janzen.

This year I read three books with a more personal connection. Two of my friends contributed to The Modern Magnificat, my friend Tom Hardin wrote The Kingdom, and I used to go to church with Emily Freeman, who wrote Grace for the Good Girl.

I wish fewer people were reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp and more people were reading Torn by Justin Lee.

I met a few authors this year: Cheryl Strayed, Lauren Winner, Kathleen Norris. I missed seeing John Green because I had a terrible cold. We also saw Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove at Wild Goose.

My unspoken goal was to hit 50 books for the year, so I am feeling pretty good! This year I would like to read a little bit more fiction and more graphic novels and find opportunities to see authors. I read a lot of poetry in 2012, but not books of poetry. I would like for that to change in 2013.

What were your favorites in 2012? Do you set reading goals for the next year? Anything coming out this year that you are looking forward to?

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  1. […] is probably an incomplete list. Because that’s how I roll But since all the cool kids are posting their books lists, I thought I would too. Keep in mind, I’ve been reading mostly […]


  1. Cassandra stafford

    I’ve been reading through the list you published for me a while back. I’m just starting “Still” today. I really like Laura Winner. So far, I’ve fallen in love with everything I’ve read from the list. I’m inspired to keep a running list this year. I’m also inspired that when I finish student teaching in April and start applying for a job in a middle school, that I can still have a reading life. You’ve managed at least one book a week!! So maybe I’m going to aim for one every two weeks–or say 25 for the year. I’d love to tech 50 but baby steps 😉

    Posted 1/2/2013 at | Permalink
  2. Cassandra stafford

    Read, not tech. Ugh.

    Posted 1/2/2013 at | Permalink
  3. Jenilee

    I am excited every year for this post!

    Posted 1/2/2013 at | Permalink
  4. Rebecca

    I purchased “Torn” after reading this post yesterday, and I can’t put it down (not great for my work productivity today!). Thanks for recommending it. It’s exactly the kind of book that I’ve been wanting/needing to read on this issue.

    Posted 1/3/2013 at | Permalink
  5. Thanks for listing these… lots of great fodder for new reading recommendations. I always look forward to your yearly posts!

    Posted 1/5/2013 at | Permalink
  6. Thanks for your list-and especially for pointing out your favorites and least favorites. I started Mennonite in a Little Black Dress last year and returned it without finishing it. I rarely do that.

    Posted 1/15/2013 at | Permalink
  7. Thank you for every other informative blog.
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    Posted 11/27/2016 at | Permalink

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