Three Recent Reads I Enjoyed
plus, a book I've pre-ordered.
Happy Wednesday everyone! As a reminder, last week I published my “Springtide Guide.” You can read about it here and download it here. If you’re using it (either with your kids or on your own), I’d love to hear how it’s going, what you’re enjoying, what’s not working, etc. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or tag me on Instagram at @abigailmurrish.
Ok, now, onto the reads.
After a strong start to my reading year in January, my reading life would best be described as fits and starts since then.
I’ve been reading for delight, but I lost my habit, partially due to travel, partially due to sickness/allergies, partially due to a Kindle that stopped working.
But slowly, I’ve found my rhythm again.
Here are three recent-ish reads that have stuck with me, plus quote from each one that is taking up some real-estate in my head.
She Come By It Natural by Sarah Smarsh
“Political headlines were fixating on a hateful, sexist version of rural, working-class America that I did not recognize. Dolly’s music and life contained what I wanted to say about class, gender, and my female forebears: That country music by women was the formative feminist text of my life.”
The Husbands by Chandler Baker
“I think I have an idea,” says the second woman. “I believe you’ve come to value yourself based on your ability to perform. Maybe you even place value on the martyrdom of performance.”
I Guess I Haven’t Learned That Yet by Shauna Niequist
“I know it might seem antithetical to move to the city that never sleeps in search of a smaller, quieter life. But that’s what we’ve done…
I thought I needed a great army of friends, eleven sets of dishes, six pairs of boots, and two thousand books. I thought I needed an institution, a board of directors, a cozy blanket of like minded, supportive people spread all over the country who would have my back in a heartbeat. Turns out you need three sweaters, rent money, and give really good people You need eggs and coffee. A Kindle account, a metro card, and one good umbrella.”
Now, onto a book that I am very excited about.
A Place to Belong: Celebrating Diversity and Kinship in the Home and Beyond by Amber O’Neal Johnston
Like many, I found Johnston through her Instagram account in early summer of 2020, in the wake of George Floyd’s murder that led me to a lot of introspection. I’m a fan of the British educator Charlotte Mason, so her IG bio caught my attention:
Homeschooling mama curating an inclusive culturally rich home education where “Charlotte Mason wears an afro.”
My husband and I a few years out from needing to make a decision about our daughter’s education, but the topic is spurring a lot of good conversation between us, asking us to question what we believe formal education is for and how it intersects with our callings as parents and neighbors.
I can tell you one thing: we don’t have many answers to the questions we’re asking. So, we’re holding those questions before God and his Word, in our community, and in the wisdom of those have been in it longer than us and have different experiences than us.
Amber O’Neal Johnston is in the latter category. And I have no doubt that her book will offer guidance and insight that will shape my thoughts.
(Here’s a link to a recent Christianity Today article featuring Johnston about black homeschoolers.)