My brain is fried. Part lack of sleep, part too much editing, part still stuck in the fantasy world of the book I just finished, it’s just not working for me this week. So, instead of writing any sort of inspirational blog post (like the five I’ve started and put aside because they’re not making any sense), I thought I’d share with you some of my all-time favourite fiction books. Because, well, I have books on my mind.
In no particular order, here are nine books/series I absolutely love:
1. A Noble Masquerade – Kristi Ann Hunter
I laughed my whole way through this book, when I wasn’t being blown away by the spiritual truths written in it. I remember the first time I read it (okay, might have been the second too…), being so captivated by the prologue that it took me forever to get to the first chapter. This one is a historical romance about a very proper young woman who can’t quite manage to follow all the rules expected of her. She starts writing to her brother’s friend, a duke, as kind of a makeshift diary, never intending on him ever seeing the letters. Only he does one day – and not only finds them amusing but writes back. Tee hee.
This one is my favourite by this author but all of hers are absolutely brilliant J
2. Firebird – Kathy Tyers
Probably the first sci-fi book I ever read, I can’t even remember where I found this one but I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve read it. It’s the story of a young woman (Firebird) who’s spent the first eighteen years of her life being told (and believing) that her only worth lies in dying well in battle. But instead of dying, she’s captured by her enemy, a race of people with an ancient faith who believe her life is worth living. It’s a book full of epic space battles and royalty and telepaths but what keeps drawing me back is Firebird’s journey to faith, love and worth.
3. Divergent – Veronica Roth
Like Firebird, this is one I pull out fairly frequently, either to read the whole thing or just my favourite parts. Another coming of age story where Tris, the main character, finds not only who she is but something worth fighting for. I’ll admit, the love story is pretty sweet too.
4. A Matter of Trust – Susan May Warren
This one is book three of the author’s Montana Rescue series, all of which I loved, but this one is by far my favourite. They’re all based around a close-knit team of rescue workers (think mountain/snow/harsh terrain rescue teams), each book telling a different team member’s story. This one is Gage’s story – a one-time world-champion snowboarder who made a decision which cost someone’s life, and has regretted his fame ever since.
He’s now joined the rescue team and is using his boarding skills to find a couple of lost snowboarders on a mountain. I loved the descriptions – totally made me feel like I was caught up in the snow right along with them, the wind whizzing past my ears – but also the challenges he has to work through as he figures out what is the guilt speaking and what is God.
5. The Merchant’s Daughter – Melanie Dickerson
Set in a medieval land, this is a stunning retelling of Beauty and the Beast. The descriptions are amazing but it was the honour and integrity of the main characters and how they seemed to come alive off the pages as they discovered the Bible for themselves and what it meant to truly live it that had me captivated.
The Healer’s Apprentice (a retelling of Sleeping Beauty) is another one of my favourites by this author.
6. The Red Door Inn/Where Two Hearts Meet/On Love’s Gentle Shore – Liz Johnson
Okay, so I can’t quite choose which of this series is my favourite so I’ll just cheat and put them all. Set on Prince Edward Island (of the Anne of Green Gables variety), these are the stories of three women who find hope, healing and love at a BnB called the Red Door Inn. Which I totally want to go visit. Even if it’s not real. Absolutely beautiful stories which had me captivated from first page to the last and went way deeper than I ever expected.
7. Like Never Before/Keep Holding On – Melissa Tagg
Okay, I’m cheating again naming two books but really, I love every single book Melissa has written. Easily one of my top five (if not top three) favourite authors. All her books are hilariously funny, poignantly sweet, challenge my faith and view of the world, take me deeper in my relationship with God, remind me how much I love family and are just really, really beautiful. And, like the Red Door Inn, I really want to go visit the (sadly fictional) town of Maple Valley.
8. The Chronicles of Narnia – C S Lewis
Don’t need to say too much about these since I’m pretty sure everyone knows them. Yep, they’re in my favourite books list. I remember my mum reading them to my siblings and I when I was little, so they’ll always be special because of that, but they’re also just brilliant. I read them for the first time as an adult – all seven in a row in a week or so – and few years ago and struggled for a couple of days after to find my way back to reality. The Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe would probably be my favourite because of its allegorical nature, but I love them all.
9. Harry Potter (series) – J K Rowling
I’ll admit, this one is probably a little controversial but really, they’re brilliantly written and a lot of fun. That said, I won’t be giving them to my kids any time soon, certainly not the last four or so as they get very dark, but I do really enjoy reading them.