Resilient Summer Reading

Recently I was in Barnes and Noble looking for some inspiring summer reading for myself and my kids. I naturally found myself thinking of authors that I’ve loved in the past. Thought I’d share a few favorites to inspire your reading with deeper significance, as well as examples of resilience that have kept me going through dark years.

Someone asked me recently what the first books I bought after the fires were, and here’s some of my favorites.

For adults:

Francine Rivers' series The Mark of the Lion has helped me through many difficult times.

Francine Rivers’ series The Mark of the Lion has helped me through many difficult times.

The Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers

I discovered these incredibly inspiring stories, historical fiction, when I was pregnant with my first son. I’ve re-read them at key moments and found it especially inspirational to think of these characters that endured so much persecution when I needed a new outlook on our challenges after the fires.

If you need an inspiring whisk-you-away story with girlfriends that helps you slow down and appreciate life, these are super.

If you need an inspiring whisk-you-away story with girlfriends that helps you slow down and appreciate life, these are super.

Sisterchicks series by Robin Jones Gunn

These sweet books, where friends over the miles meet up in foreign lands for a meaningful experience have carried me through multiple moves and losses. Her touch with wit and humor are like a rose-scented breeze in summer. She has such a skill with the “beat” or moment a character embraces a hard lesson in life. I’d love to finish collecting these for my library but have several on hand just in case.

What Jan Karon captures in Mitford is as special as apple pie and ice cream. Simply wonderful!

What Jan Karon captures in Mitford is as special as apple pie and ice cream. Simply wonderful!

The Mitford Series by Jan Karon

This small town is so endearing and I feel I know each of her characters. I love how they learn great lessons and continue to grow throughout her whole series. It’s dear to me because my grandmother loved them too and we shared nice talks about these books. A gentle summer read with uplifting points.

For tweens and teens:

When I studied C.S. Lewis in Europe, these were my favorite stories I couldn't put down and helped with understanding much of life.

When I studied C.S. Lewis in Europe, these were my favorite stories I couldn’t put down and helped with understanding much of life.

The Narnia Chronicles by C.S. Lewis

It’s that lion Aslan, I can feel his fur and never cease to learn from the Pevensie family’s adventures here. On days when I need a boost, even with my writing, I just read a few pages and remember why I’m doing this. It helps with so many examples for positive parenting, too. We use Eustace’s lessons as a dragon over and again in our home.

There are other favorites, but these were the first in our collection of fiction with deeper meaning and uplifting hope. What authors have helped you in different times of need?

Hope your thoughts are beginning slow down a bit with summer’s arrival and you enjoy the glass being half-full, even if some water has splashed out lately.

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