We LOVE to read here at Anchored Women! If you're looking for a few great books to add to your TBR stack this summer, we've got you covered! Click the button below for the section you want to explore first, or take a look at all the sections!
Fiction is my all-time favorite, and summer is the perfect time to escape into a good book! Below you'll find our some of the best stand-alone novels we've read in the last few years - perfect to add to your summer stack! (Love a good series? You'll find a section on those a few sections down!)
THE LAST BOOKSHOP IN LONDON
This book takes the precious first spot on our reading guide because I just finished it and it was SO GOOD. World War II came to life for me for the first time in my 38 years of life, and I was completely swept into the storyline of this book. A single woman, new to London, finds herself working in a bookshop as WWII begins. Through it, she finds a love for books, and a purpose of her own. If you like books about books and page-turning fiction, you will love this one! I cried through the end - it was a truly beautiful book!
This book was a bit of a slow start for me, but once it took hold, I was completely sucked in. The beautiful story of a brother and sister, intertwined with the life of C.S. Lewis, is both compelling and emotional fiction that will make your heart swell the whole way through. If you love Narnia, Oxford, or simply the power of stories (I fall into all 3 categories!), you will fall in love with this book, too.
This modern story of friendship + home centers around a small town bookshop, and that was all it took for me to fall in love with this book. Throw in the fact that it's written by one of my favorite authors ever, and this book is a total win.
I cannot get enough of Liane Moriarty's writing. She weaves a story in a way that is completely artistic, dropping in surprise facts here and there that eventually tie the entire plot together. This story about a middle-aged woman who forgets everything about her current life and is taken back to her mindset as a newlywed is both a page-turner and a tear-jerker, in the best way.
I loved this sweet story of intergenerational family, mixed-up priorities, and slowing down. Ripe with honest struggles, the relationship between a woman and her grandmother, and a journal that speaks truth to all generations, this fictional story encouraged me in my real life, and will stick with me for years to come.
A girl and her grandma switch places, and hilarity ensues. Need I say more? This book was one I picked up and could not put down till it was finished. (Sorry, laundry!) If you are looking for a fun, quick read this summer, this one is it.
Covering many different aspects of life, these non-fiction reads were a solid encouragement to me. There's something special about a book that will encourage you to grow while still reminding you that Christ has already done the saving work in your life. I hope these encourage you, too!
RAGGED Gretchen Ronnevik
This is the best book I've read so far this year. Gretchen gives a completely new approach to spiritual disciplines, uncovering how can bring us freedom instead of just being one more thing on our spiritual to-do list. I'll be re-reading this book at the beginning of every year!
This book has been the single most motivating book in my reading-mom life. I was encouraged AND equipped to read to my kids - all through the lens of connecting with them. I actually listened to this on audio, which was delightful (I found myself doing more laundry so I didn't have to turn it off!), but would recommend a physical copy for the book lists!
For any family navigating tech use in the home, this is a fantastic read. Full of practical advice and the research to back it up, you'll love this fresh approach to purposeful technology use. While we don't use every suggestion in this book we've found it a perfect place to start. (A great companion to this would be Molly DeFrank's new book Digital Detox!)
If you're looking for a little help in your approach to food, this book will be right up your alley. Asheritah dives right into the link between faith and food, and gets to the root of any food issues we might have. I was both convicted and encouraged by this excellent book.
I love the way Alisa Childers is not afraid to approach the important questions facing us as Christians today. This book takes a look at progressive Christianity and how it's affecting the way many Christians approach their own faith today. Grounded in Scripture and rich in truth, this is a must-read for any Christian navigating today's post-Christian culture.
This book is one I come back to over and over again. It's a collection of essays on all kinds of different topics - usually practical life advice for the Christian woman. I'm so grateful for the wisdom of Elisabeth Elliot in my own life - she's grounded in Scripture and not ashamed of it!
These books are FABULOUS to listen to as audiobooks! If you're on-the-go too often to sit down and read a book, listening to one of these books is an easy substitute! (And yes, listening to an audiobook totally counts as reading a book!)
TEN WORDS TO LIVE BY Jen WIlkin
A fabulous, insightful take on the 10 Commandments, Jen Wilkin's newest book was great to listen to on audio. I know she's an author I can trust to handle Scripture with integrity, taking it at it's word, so I make it a point to read everything she writes! I loved this on audio to mull over while I did the laundry.
I'm actually still listening to this one, but I love the way Jennifer Dukes Lee tells her story and encourages us to live the slower life. That's been a huge theme in my life lately, and this book only reinforced it!
I think I listened to this one from beginning to end in just 2 days. I loved how Greta was able to make adventuring accessible even for us not-so-adventurous moms. This book encouraged me to take a few risks with my kids in the spirit of adventure and connection. This is a perfect read for the summer!
You probably have caught on by now that I like to listen to books that will teach me something. (I save my page-turning fiction for book forms where I can actually turn a page!) This book is one I will re-listen to more than once. It's an incredible resources for moms who want to raise kids who are grounded in faith and can stand strong against culture. Highly recommend!
Another book I listened to in less than 2 days! Head's up - this author sugarcoats nothing, a writing trait I really love. She takes an honest look at identity in Christ and how our current culture has twisted that - and she brings us back to Scripture to find our selves and our purpose - all anchored in Christ. This book might not be for everyone, but I loved it.
There's nothing I love better than a good fiction series! I get so excited about finishing a good book ONLY TO FIND that there are a handful more in the same series! Below you'll find a few of my very favorite series of all time. Enjoy diving into these delightful escapes!
THE O'MALLEY SERIES Dee Henderson
I can't even count how many times I've read and re-read this series! I love a good series based on siblings, and this one does not disappoint. Each book is about a different sibling, rich in mystery and faith-based without being too cheesy. (I mean, I do love a good cheesy novel, but this isn't too much.) I loved learning the backstory of each sibling, and watching them solve their mystery and find a future full of hope!
Another series about siblings!! And another that I've re-read multiples times. These books are a modern, faith-based take on family and relationships. Co-authored by Gary Smalley, this series takes on serious issues like infidelity, abuse, doubting faith, and impossible medical diagnoses. If you're looking for a series that hits you in the feels, this one is it. (Bonus: This series leads into a collection of series that continue the story of the Baxters. There are literally dozens of Baxter books - even a series for kids, which my 11-year-old loves!)
Last year I fell down the Colleen Coble series hole. And it was delightful!If you like a good suspense novel, written from a faith-based perspective, these books will be totally up your alley. These three are her most recent, and my favorites of her books. You've got an independent female lead, a strained father-daughter relationship, and an unfolding history of their life in the cult they escaped from - this is a page-turning series for sure.
Another Colleen Coble series! The landscape of this series is just as much of a character as the characters themselves, and the small-town vibe will charm you right from the beginning. What's neat about this series (and the rest of CC's books) is that characters from all of her different series show up in other series! Everything is intertwined, which gives a richness to all of her books. I highly suggest reading them in publishing order, if you're going to dive in like I did! (Though I will say, the ones I've shared here are certainly better than the others.)
I know I've mentioned Katherine Reay already, but I'm telling you - her books are the ones I pre-order and make sure I don't miss! These modern takes on Austen classics are a delight to read, and will captivate you whether or not you're an Austen fan yourself! (Don't hate me but I've never finished an Austen book, and I absolutely loved these.) If you need a feel-good novel (or 5) that's written with excellence and an incredible understanding of humanity, you'll love anything by Katherine Reay!
Want to use your summer to boost your productivity? These are some of my favorite books for amping up my motivation to get things done!
ESSENTIALISM Greg McKeown
This is one of my favorite books on productivity because it's not about doing more things, it's about focusing in on the few essential things that really matter. If you feel like you always have too much on your plate to actually make progress on anything, this book will help you find a clear path forward. It's a winner!
This book focuses on productivity in light of the gospel. I really loved how the author let the Bible inform his advice, and the way he approaches getting things done. This is a great one to sit down and read OR listen to as you're doing dishes or laundry. If you're looking for a faith-based approach to productivity, you'll love this book, too.
I love Kendra's practical approach to figuring out what exactly even needs to get done! She gets laser focused on strategies to help you name what's important in your own life and family, and then implement simple ways to keep those things a priority. Her writing voice is fun and friendly, and this is both a helpful AND enjoyable book to read! (Definitely recommend getting a physical copy because you'll want to highlight it up!)
I've been listening to this one, and I love it because he approaches habits in a similar way to how we approach them here at Anchored Women - anchoring habits to something you're already doing, breaking new habits down into manageable pieces, etc. If you need a kick in your pants to get some habits established in your own life, this book will do that for you!
This is specifically a business productivity book - and one of the best ones I've ever read. Even though my business is different from the author's, his strategies on how to focus in on the one most important thing and make that AWESOME has been so helpful for me. I've appreciated the wise insight I've gained from this book, and have added all his others to my TBR list!
These are some of our favorite books to read-aloud together as a family, no matter the ages of your kids! Summer is a GREAT time to establish a read-aloud habit together!
CHRONICLES OF NARNIA C.S. Lewis
We are listening to this series together as a family every time we drive somewhere - whether that's the grocery store, or on a road trip! My kids are at the perfect age to get lost in the world of Narnia, and to be honest, I am too. This is a classic series we are ALL enjoying, and will read again and again.
I don't know if I've ever had more fun with my kids than I did when we were reading through all of the Fudge books by Judy Blume! I remembered them from my own childhood, but listening to them with my kids had us laughing out loud all. the. time! Honestly, this was the series that got us hooked on audiobooks. If you're looking for a fun, light series to read through or listen to with your kids this summer - look no further. Start here!
I wish I was that mom who paired poetry with tea and fanciness, but to be honest, our family really needs our poetry to be funny. Shel Silverstein never fails to deliver, and my kids eat all of his books up! They have been bringing them in the car and reading them to me while I drive. Not only is it entertaining for all of us, it also gives each of them a chance to practice reading out loud! (Without them realizing it.)
Both of my kids loved this book, always asking for another chapter. The adventures of these kids beautifully meshed risk and imagination with tough, real-life experiences. This was one of those books that opened up a lot of great discussion between my kids and me, giving us space to talk about hard things we might not have brought up in another context. When I asked my kids what books they have loved reading this year, this one was the first out of both of their mouths!
We are reading this book right now, and it's made both of my kids look forward to bedtime. (A TRUE MIRACLE!!) This is my first Andrew Clements book, and I'm hooked - and so are my kiddos. He writes in such a relatable way that both my 8 year old and 11 year old can see themselves in the characters. This is one that they both keep begging for another chapter in - it's been a huge hit with my kids, and I've been enjoying it too!