Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Best of 2016



It's been a year for the books.

oh schuyler i knew you'd say that

I never know quite what I'm going to find when I start recapping the blog. Will I find a good year? A flat year? One with not much interesting content, and not much going on? I feel like 2015 was a year that really knocked the ball out of the park as far as wrestling with things and thinking through deep subjects. 2016, was, perhaps, a year of a different sort. Learning to think on my feet. Planning blog posts I could get done in between work and lesson planning and Bible studies. It was a year, not of personal cleverness, but of sustaining grace. And even if I feel like I didn't get quite as much energy as I wanted to tackle a blog redesign and knock out a long book list, God allowed me to accomplish several excellent things that I had been hoping to do.

2016 was the year of big books. I knocked off Ben-Hur and Bonhoeffer, as well as Our Mutual Friend, 3 books I was really hoping to read. I finished reading Return of the King for the second time and tried out a fantastic variety of new authors (Stephen Lawhead, Lysa TerKeurst, Nadine Brandes)  as well as some new books from beloved favorites (Suzannah Rowntree and Elisabeth Grace Foley). I helped out with book releases and beta read for friends. We also did the first link-ups and had a new feature of once a month guest voices.

2016 has been a thriving year of growth and new horizons. So spend a happy morning clicking links, and please tell me what YOUR favorite memories are from My Lady Bibliophile this year!

Favorite Articles From 2016
The level of nostalgia this year has reached an unprecedented height. I'm so glad, without really planning to do so, that I was able to write down some memories about reading and my own personal testimony on paper. It is wonderful to have official records of childhood memories.

The Shining Company and the Ethics of War 
Open Letters to Various Bookish Characters 
My Writing Process: The Backstory 
My Good Friday Story
Why Reading Boundaries Are a Good Thing (written when the internet was awash with hashtags to make certain characters gay)
Top 9 Fictional Dishes to Try (because I actually am a foodie)
A Walk Down Memory Lane (our library days growing up)
In Which Jaeryn Graham Has a Birthday 
Drawing on Your Inner Gold 

Guest Articles From 2016
Bibliophile Tabletalk--Elizabeth Newsom 
6 Ways to Encourage the Creative Process In Writing--Emily Hayse
From the Dark to the Dawn: Book Review--Carrie-Grace 
On Poetry and How Amazing It Is--Victoria Marinov
Why Modern Readers Should Care About History--Jordan Jachim 
Bibliophile Tabletalk--Katherine Forster 
Fairytale Interview--Suzannah Rowntree 

Favorite Book Reviews From 2016
Light of the Last, by Chuck Black
Fierce Convictions, by Hannah More
The Sparrow Series, Jason McIntyre
Poetry by A. A. Milne
To Get to You, Joanne Bischof 
20 Things We'd Tell Our Twentysomething Selves, Peter and Kelli Worrall
Tintin Comics, by Herge
Gilead, Marilynne Robinson
Uninvited, Lysa TerKeurst
The Broken Way, Ann Voskamp

Nonfiction of the Year

20 Things We'd Tell Our Twentysomething Selves

Written with deep heart and practical encouragement, this book tackles a lot of things twentysomethings feel lost and need help with. If you're in your twenties and wish you had a source of wise counsel, this book offers more than ideology--it offers desperately needed practical suggestions founded on good ideology. By Peter and Kelli Worrall.

Fiction of the Year

Kidnapped

One of the most enjoyable reads of 2016, I deeply savored this adventurous experience. It's a novel I've revisited many times, and still one of my favorites. If you haven't read Kidnapped yet, make 2017 the year to do it. By Robert Louis Stevenson.

Author of the Year

Ann Voskamp

A woman who writes with heart, grace, and desperately needed honesty, Ann Voskamp's new book The Broken Way, cemented my liking for her thoughtful work. She writes with the beauty and anguish of the vulnerable, wrapping her thoughts in a poetic celebration of everyday life. The author that lingers in my heart after a year that makes me feel both pain and gratitude.

Blessings, my friends. It is with a heart full of gratitude that I think about books and Jesus and all of you. What are your favorite books from this year? Or the best memories you've had so far with reading or writing? I'd love to know!

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