I read a lot of books, usually around 150 a year. Every year I create a list of the top few I read that really stuck with me, or that changed my life in some way. It’s normally a mix of fiction and nonfiction, junior books and adult. I list them in no particular order…except I always save the absolute BEST BOOK for last. So here we go!
1: The Forgotten Skills of Cooking, by Darina Allen.
Lush photos combined with old-fashioned cookery. Also has chapters on keeping chickens, and other related skills. This is one of those books that I found at the library, read about two pages, and bought myself a copy off Amazon.
2: The Backyard Homestead Book of Kitchen Know-How, by Andrea Chesman.
I put off getting this book for ages, even though I love the others in this backyard homestead series. I felt like I would already know too much of the information inside. Wrong. Although I did know a great deal, Chesman wrote a very entertaining and personal book, with a wealth of helpful information.
3: Empty Grave, by Jonathan Stroud.
The final book in the Lockwood & Co Series. This series was phenomenal all the way through, and this particular book could easily have been the best of the year…except that it was overtaken at the very tail of 2017 by the actual winner. I’m just blown away by the world-building Stroud has done here. Funny story…at my library, a 30s something guy came in to pick up this book, and he was visibly over the moon at having it in his hands. I commented on how excited I was to get it myself, and he clutched it against his chest and said, “Yeah, I have to read it fast. My daughter wants it too!” I hear Stroud is considering a spin-off series, and I’d definitely be down for that.
4: Into the Drowning Deep, by Mira Grant.
Mermaids. Evil, murderous mermaids. Or…are they? Really well-done, well-written, and just plain fun. Mira Grant also writes under the name Seanan McGuire, and she’s made this list before under that name.
5: Radical Homemakers, by Shannon Hayes.
This book is how I feel. It’s amazing. And the historical information is extremely interesting.
6: Eat Dirt, by Dr. Josh Axe.
Incredibly interesting book. This could be a life-changing book for almost everyone.
7: Nourishing Fats, by Sally Fallon.
Natural animal fats are not the enemy. Despite what certain medical organizations would like you to believe, it is the lack of whole milk, cream, butter, lard, organ meats and other sources of traditional foods that is causing heart problems, obesity, and almost all of our health issues. This book explains the science, using the medical profession’s own studies to definitively prove that the low-fat diet is nothing more than a lie. Eat more butter! It’s critical for your health.
8: Will Dogs Chase Cats in Heaven, by Dan Story.
Having made an extensive study of the topic, I’ve come to the conclusion there is ZERO Biblical evidence for the idea that animals don’t have immortal souls – and an astounding amount of Biblical evidence that they do. In fact, I think it’s blindingly obvious (once you look) that animals will be redeemed and resurrected from the curse we put upon them. I look forward to sharing my eternity with the animals I love.
9: She Rides Shotgun, by Jordan Harper.
Loved everything about this book…except that it ended. And the author is absolutely right: the bear isn’t real, but he’s true.
Can’t wait to see what Harper writes next.
10: Deep Nutrition, by Catherine Shanahan, M.D.
One of those books everyone should read, especially if you’re EVER planning on becoming pregnant, if you currently have any sort of ill health, are trying to lose weight, or if you just want to strong, young, and healthy all your life.
11: Small-Scale Poultry Flock, by Harvey Ussery
There’s a foreward by Joel Salatin. Do you need to know anything else? Incredible book; hands down THE BEST book on small farm and backyard flocks available. I’ve read most of the chicken books out there, and not a single one comes close to this one. One hundred stars.
12: Assassin’s Fate, by Robin Hobb.
Fantastic end to this series…and probably to all her series set in this particular world. So many fates besides Fitz’s are entwined in this book. Not ashamed to say I was bawling like a baby by the end.
And out of all 150+ books, here’s the absolute best book I read this past year:
13: 7 Things You Have to Know to Understand End Times Prophecy, by Jack Kelley
The cover is a bit cheesy, I will admit. But the words inside are pure gold. This book has literally changed my life. Now I’m eagerly watching and anticipating, absolutely positive that we’re not only living in the end times, but that Christ will return within just a few years (if even that long!) to take his church home “in the twinkling of an eye” leaving the rest of the world behind. For the first time in all of history, ALL the things foretold in the Bible are not only possible, but are actually in the process of happening. It’s incredible to watch the news and see it happen, piece by piece. Jack Kelley also has a helpful website: gracethrufaith.com, with TONS of studies, articles, and answered questions. I’ve been glued to my Bible the last week or so.