Friday, December 20, 2013

Best of 2013

via Pinterest
Well, it may surprise some of you that I'm doing a year-end review so early in December. But the time has come for me to take a wee break from the blogosphere, not only to read some good books so I have fresh material for reviews, but also to spend some time with family and friends.

It's been another exciting year to be a bibliophile. In the midst of one crazy travelling year, I've posted near the Smoky Mountains, on Vancouver Island, in Washington State, and in a lovely little cabin in northern Michigan. A series of miracles, to say the least. And wherever I've gone, I've taken a lot of good books with me to keep me company.

It's also been a challenging year to post. Lest you think I'm some kind of crazy person who can do a bunch of things and keep up with the reading at the same time, my book list isn't quite as long this year, and some of my reviews were well-loved favorites that I knew and trusted, even though I hadn't read them in a while. Life gets busier, and precious moments to read are fewer and farther between. So on many days it was a labor of love. But the Lord gives grace and words and strength, and I'm realizing more and more that time to read is a gift from Him, not to be taken for granted.

As I looked back on the articles and reviews from this past year, I was encouraged by what I saw. Sometimes I came across articles I didn't even know I had written, and they inspired me as I read over them again. Other times I smiled, remembering good memories on the day I posted certain articles, or the joy that it was to read books for certain reviews. And once or twice, I got absorbed in my own writing as if it were someone else's.

At the end of another year, I can truly say the Lord has been very good to me. A lot of good books, and I'm grateful for the ones I was able to read. A lot of articles, a lot of discussion. And not only that, but I got to meet some very special fellow bibliophiles this year that I never expected to. In person. International bibliophiles from Canada and Australia.

That was indeed a gift from the Lord.

So, before this holiday season begins, I'd like to pause and take some time to reflect on where the Lord has brought me thus far. To do that, I've picked seven articles and seven book reviews from the past year that were especially memorable or enjoyable to me. I would love to hear about articles or book reviews that stood out to you this year from the blog as well! :)

I hope you'll enjoy a sampling of past content from the blog.

Top 7 Articles
Are Authors a Product of Their Times?
When Bibliophiles Play (Part One, Part Two, Part Three)
The Power of the Cross (Part One, Part Two)
A Happy Birthday Blog Post
Bibliophiles and Accountability
The Sinners We Love (Introduction, Conclusion)
Let Them All Laugh 

Special Mention
Dominion-Oriented Bibliophiles--guest post for In Which I Read Vintage Novels
Feeding the Soul--Balancing Busyness and Times of Rest--guest post for Fullness of Joy

Top 7 Book Reviews
The Lady of the Lake, by Sir Walter Scott
The Hole in Our Holiness, by Kevin DeYoung
The Daughter of Time, by Josephine Tey
Humble Orthodoxy, by Joshua Harris
The Silmarillion, by JRR Tolkien (Part One, Part Two)
Dreamlander, by K.M Weiland
 7 Men and the Secret of Their Greatness, by Eric Metaxas

While I'm gone, perhaps you would enjoy browsing some of these Top 7 posts. And I'll still be around for comments and emails during the holiday season.

It's always a gift to receive your comments, emails, and interactions. They make blogging very enjoyable, and I really appreciate every one of them. :) I hope that the articles and reviews this year have been thought-provoking, inspiring, and most of all, encouraging in your walk with the Lord. That would be my greatest desire with this blog, and my goal every year with the content I put out.

I'll be back January 3rd to celebrate two years of My Lady Bibliophile, when I'll post my 2012 book list, and pick a top fiction and nonfiction book of 2013, as well as my favorite author from the year. Until then, I wish you a very Merry Christmas, and a very happy New Year, from the bottom of my book-loving heart. May you find abundant time to reflect on Christ this Christmas season, and perhaps to sneak in a few pages of your favorite novel as well. ;)

Until 2014!

Blessings,
Lady Bibliophile

12 comments:

  1. I think one of my favorite posts of this year was your guest post for Fullness of Joy. :D

    Though I will miss your posts, I'm glad you're taking a break. ;) You've been a faithful blogger ever since you started: well done. :) Enjoy your rest. I look forward to your posts in 2014 (can't believe the new year is almost here already!).

    See you around .<3
    ~Kaleigh

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    1. Hi Kaleigh!
      I'm so glad that post was a blessing to you; I really enjoyed writing it as well, and I look forward to doing a book review in a similar strain as soon as I finish reading one of my new purchases. It's Kevin DeYoung's "Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem", about how Christians should view busyness. :)

      And thank you for following, and being so encouraging! Your words and chats are a huge part of how I keep going!

      Love,
      Schuyler

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  2. Number 1 favorite series: The Sinners We Love (and Whether or Not We Should)
    2. Situational Ethics and How to Deal With Them
    3.The Power of the Cross

    And my top 3 favorite posts were:
    1. Are Authors a Product of Their Times?
    2.3 Things I Learned From G. K. Chesterton
    3. Behind the Bedroom Door
    Although I don't think it would be fair to say that these are my absolute favorites of the year...I also really enjoyed a lot of others you did! ;)
    Hope you have a wonderful break week! :D
    Love,
    Sister

    Yayyy...all my hyperlinks worked!!!!!!

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    1. I forgot about Situational Ethics. :D I really enjoyed that series (as well as the story that inspired it!)

      And your birthday post was simply delightful.

      You comment every time, Sister dear, and are so faithful in your encouragement. :) Thank you very much; it means a lot to me. <3

      Love,
      Schuyler

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    2. Aww...Thank-you! <3

      Was it a Cadfael that inspired it?

      ~CG

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    3. No. :P It was a very special book that isn't published yet. ;) One with good friendships and cream soda, and a fantastic plot twist at the end.

      ~Schuyler

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    4. O__O **grins** I wondered...
      The reason I asked if it was a Cadfael was because that was what you mentioned on your blog post.

      But I'm very glad that it was that one. :D :D That's one of my favorites and I think the author handled the ending very well! ;)

      ~CG

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    5. Awww. It was so nice looking at your blog and finding this conversation...I was warmed to the heart. : )
      I really loved the times when Lady B took a break and answered tags, but there were a lot of series that I really liked as well. I liked Sinners We Love and Situational Ethics. The latter one was a near one to my heart, obviously. : ) And there were a couple book reviews that intrigued me to the point where I got them out from the library...39 Steps, Keeper of the Bees.
      It has been another wonderful year with you, Lady B, and I am really looking forward to the next one!
      -E.H. : )

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    6. I'm so glad you enjoyed Keeper of the Bees, and 39 Steps as well! I remember The Philologist mentioned reading the latter, and I didn't know if you had as well. I shall have to ask you more about what you thought of it.

      Thank-you! I'm looking forward to the next year as well--Lord-willing lots more books to read and review. :) And if you ever wanted to make up a tag for me to answer, I would be happy to feature it...

      And perhaps some upcoming stories you write in the next year will inspire another series! You never know. ;)

      Love,
      Schuyler

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  3. It was good to meet you, too :).

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  4. Happy New Year, Schuyler! I've loved so, so many wonderful posts you've penned this past year - I can't quite choose a favourite, though I have to admit the reviews of the Silmarillion were dashed good (I still can't fathom how you wrote it so eloquently and coherently. For me, I just would say, 'It is like reading a history book of ancient, dense beauty... and it made me cry.'
    The Sinners We Love made me do a lot of thinking, and I loved all your fun tag posts!

    By God's grace, keep it up. You are an inspiration and great blessing, dear sister.

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    1. Happy New Year, Joy! I've so enjoyed chatting with you after various posts this year on the blog. :D And the Sil was one of my favorites to write, so I'm glad you enjoyed reading it!

      Aw, thank-you so much. <3 I hope it continues to be a blessing, and my goal will be to continue to glorify God with it in whatever way possible. I enjoy having you stop by!

      Love,
      Schuyler

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