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Story of a Soul by Therese of Lisieux (John Clarke Translation)

MMD Reading Challenge 2017- For Fun
Category: Book You've Already Read Before

Back to the Classics Reading Challenge 2017
Category: Classic by a Woman Author

This book is one of my favorites. I have read it 5 or 6 times already, and I always get something new out of it. Her spirituality is accessible to everyone, and that is what I love about it. This is by far the best translation in my opinion. The language, while still flowery, is not saccharine sweet, which I have found to be the case in some other translations. Also, the earlier translations, were heavily edited by her sisters. Don't hesitate to read this book because it was written by a young nun during the 1800s. There is really something for everyone contained in her writings, and it's definitely worth re-reading.

Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

MMD Reading Challenge 2017- For Fun
Category:  Book with a reputation of being un-put-down-able

This is not a book I normally would've been drawn to, but I found out that it was written by one of the writers for Arrested Development, and I became intrigued. I flew through this book. It's a pretty hilarious satire, and while it feels like a light "chic lit", the characters have depth. This novel is in epistolary form, made up of emails, psychology reports, FBI documents, school memos, etc. that have been collected by Bee, Bernadette's daughter, as well as Bee's first person account of her search for her mother.

The Blue Castle by L. M. Montgomery

Back to the Classics Reading Challenge 2017
Category: Romance Classic

L. M. Montgomery wrote mostly children's books, but this book is geared toward adults. It is a hidden gem; a light read, but one with substance. The plotline of the movie, Last Holiday is very similar to this. Valancy Stirling lives with her mother and cousin, who are highly dysfunctional. Her extended family is just as dysfunctional, and they all live in the same town in Canada during the 1920's. At 30, she has been relegated to the status of "old maid". She is told by the Doctor that she has a year to live, tops. Upon hearing this news, she feels free to live and speak as she wants, which shocks her family. She moves out, and eventually, gets married. I won't give the rest away. The beginning of the book was a bit tedious, but it picks up after that. I actually laughed out loud several times!

Silent Mermaid by Brittany Fichter

MMD Reading Challenge 2017- For Fun
Category- A Topic You Already Love

One of my favorite genres is Fairy Tales and Fairy Tale Retellings. These are my ultimate comfort reads, even when they are on the cheesy side. I really didn't know what to expect from this $0.99 Indie Kindle Deal, but it really impressed me. It is a very unique take on the Little Mermaid. For instance, the Mermaids are protectors, who keep Sortheliege, an evil force, much like a zombie virus, from taking over sea and land kingdoms. Arianna is also different from the other mermaids because she has two natures, mermaid and human. It is also a story of faith, and there are little nods to the Disney version, which I really liked.

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight by Anonymous

Back to the Classics Reading Challenge 2017
Category: Published Before 1800

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a medieval alliterative romance poem that is surprisingly deep for it's time. I really enjoyed it. The most striking thing about it to me was Gawain's character. He is a dynamic character which is not typical during that era of Literature. The imagery is fantastic. I chose the translation by Simon Armitage in audio book format. I really wanted to hear the poem spoken aloud, so this version was a great choice for me, and the introduction was very helpful.

The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Back to the Classics Reading Challenge 2017
Category: Russian Classic

This book took me a little while to get into, but once I got through the first few chapters, I was hooked! This is a long, philosophically dense book, but do not let that deter you. It is anything, but boring, and it will make you think. The main conflict in the novel is Faith vs Doubt. The characters are so dynamic that I believed they were real people. Definitely take your time reading this one. I read it in two months, and there is so much to it that I want to read it again. I think I will read a different translation every time. I actually regret that I can't read it in Russian. I would love to experience this novel in it's original glory.