The Book Nook

Lately I’ve been book obsessed. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I remain unemployed with little to do besides housework and grocery shopping. And reading. Today, I share two of my new favorites that I can’t stop talking about.

1. Stepping Heavenward

I hesitate to write about this book for fear I won’t do it justice and no girl will want to read it. And you all need to. First published in 1869, it’s a fictional account of a young woman from childhood through adulthood, as told by her journal. It has the strength and charm of a Jane Austen novel, but with an element of vulnerability as she struggles daily to become more like Christ. It was such a different time, but the struggles are the same as mine today. A friend recently mailed me a copy because reading it made her want to be a better wife and mother. Read it. I know you’ll love it.

2. The Handmade Marketplace

I have to give the disclaimer that I’m not even halfway finished with this book, but if you’re wanting to start your own small business, this is the book to read. It walks you through getting started, creating a brand, networking, marketing, selling, and a lot more. A must have for anyone has ever entertained the idea of taking their creativity (painting, sewing, or making googly-eyed peanuts) to the next level.

And of course I’m always wanting more. What’s the best book you’ve read lately?

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24 thoughts on “The Book Nook”

  1. Jen, you are not going to believe this! My mother and I just found my great grandmother's copy of Stepping Heavenward last week. It was old, dusty and in a state of disrepair, but it called to me, as many books do. Inside the front cover are the names of several family members that read the book and passed it on. You are right, it was a very different era; disciplined is the word that comes to my mind after only reading the first chapter. You posting this gives me goose bumps! It is raining outside right now. I think I will crawl back into bed and read!!!

  2. Just bought Stepping Heavenward on my Kindle. Thanks for the tip!! Keep us updated on what you are reading. You're not the only one who is "bood obsessed". 🙂

  3. I just read The Kite Runner. And I am almost done with Volume I of Charles Spurgeon's sermons. However, I must say I don't have the same knack for picking out really cool-looking vintage books as you do. I just don't have the patience to wade through a rare book store (rare-book store, not rare bookstore). Keep up the good reading!

  4. I bought that same copy of Stepping Heavenward when I was 10 years old or so. My main motives were my love of old books and pretty covers, but then I read it and loved it. I'm glad I have it now that I can understand and appreciate it better. A reread is definitely in order!
    Hmm…this year, I read the Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane novels by Dorothy L. Sayers. They're mysteries, but there's so much more to them than just the mystery plot! Sayers has a witty and beautiful writing style. My favorite is Gaudy Night (closely followed by Busman's Honeymoon), but it's best to read all of them to get the full build-up.

    (p.s. – randomly stumbled across your blog a couple weeks ago, & have really enjoyed reading!)

  5. Like yourself, I love to read. Classics are my favorite! I typically find that they are better written and stretch my vocabulary beyond most anything written today. I will definitely see if I can't find a copy of Stepping Heavenward. Two books that I have both enjoyed and found challenging are Kristin Lavransdatter and The Picture of Dorian Gray.

  6. I love that you love books.
    I am a fiction girl. Do you like historical fiction? If so, I can't go another second without recommending THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH by Ken Follet. It's fantastic and gripping and powerful. However, even though I loved it so much, I think the best part about that book is its sequel–WORLD WITHOUT END. I just loved the character development. I think the main female character (Caris) is the epitome of a strong female lead. I wish there were other books with strong characters like her.
    Also, if you want a cheesy but precious story (also historical fiction), I would recommend THE GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY. It's set right after WWII on the island of Guernsey. It's told through letters to and from the island, and the characters are so precious that I just wanted to move to Guernsey to be their friends!
    Right now, I'm reading THE OTHER QUEEN by Phillippa Gregory. It's her story of the imprisonment of Mary Queen of Scots. Interesting for sure. Made me wikipedia Mary Queen of Scots to learn more about her.

    1. I think Jen read the Guernsey book…or I think she kept trying to tell me about it…probably should have been paying more attention. We'll check those out though, thanks for the great suggestions!

  7. One book that I just couldn’t put down recently was some non-fiction…some goold ol’ fashion education. The book is called:

    Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions.

    by Dan Ariely

    It really made me re-think about the choices I make, and the way I go about making those choices. It can definitely be applicable to many parts of life, personal and professional.

    -Matt

  8. I've been on a Business Book kick for the past year or so, so my recent read that I highly recommend will probably appeal more to Kyle.
    Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman is now one of the first 2 books I recommend to anyone wanting to start or just starting their own business. The other is E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber.
    I saw Kyle's last recommendation of Rework (excellent) and would like to hear more of his favorite business book recommendations.

    1. If I could give you 3 other business books to read they would be the following in some order:

      The Dip
      Linchpin
      Moneyball (although it's not explicitly a business book)

      I know that's 2 Seth Godin books and a baseball book but…just trust me, they're all outstanding. Oh, and I'll definitely check out those two you recommended!

      1. Used book store for E-Myth. There's been at least one copy in every Half Price I've been to.
        Traction is new and still only comes in hardback.
        I love Seth Godin (in that manly, business way) and have been hearing great things about Linchpin…may just be my next Kindle book.

  9. A couple of my favorites are "The Thorn Birds" by Colleen McCullough and "Down Where My Love Lives" by Charles Martin. "The Thorn Birds" is a must-read epic novel spanning several generations of a family in Australia. It is so very well written, and it is so compelling you won't want to put it down! "Down Where My Love Lives" is a beautifully heartbreaking novel that will move you like you wouldn't expect. Although heartbreaking, it allows you to get wrapped up into the story and experience the emotion of the main characters like no other book I've read.

    I hope you enjoy these!

  10. hi! i highly recommend either of khaled hosseini's books: the kite runner or a thousand splendid suns. beware – they're no pleasure reads, although you can derive pleasure from them. they're challenging and gritty, and they'll make you ache, but they're wonderful. 🙂

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