Alas, I did not finish all the books on my original list. My original list is here. I was asked to do a couple of book reviews so those sort of bumped the books originally on the list farther down. And then I completely fizzled out at the end of November. I hate to admit I have not even picked up a book since December 1. While finishing up 8 books, only 5 of those are on the original list of eleven. Another was a carry over from the spring challenge, one was a review, one was read at the request of our pastor. You can read reviews for the ones I did finish and others from the year at this link.
Which book did I like the most? I would have to say it was "Idol Eyes" by Mandissa. My kids and I are big fans of American and Canadian Idol and I loved reading about the behind the scenes experiences of American Idol. I found Mandissa's honesty about her feelings, struggles and faith in the Lord refreshing and engaging.
The book I liked the least? I would have to say "23 Minutes in Hell". While not a bad book or badly written it is just not the type of book I would pick up on my own. My pastor requested we read it, so I did.
Alton Gansky was a new author for me this time around and I will read more of his books in the future.
What have I learned? Hmmm, that is sort of hard to answer. First directly from a book, I learned alot from the Many Loves of Marriage which was my carry over from the spring. There were so many nuggets in that book that I bought a journal just to write them all down. And there also many insights from Idol Eyes that touched me. But the one that really taught me a lot of things even though it was fiction, things that have stuck with me, was from "A Vow to Cherish". I learned so much about the devasting disease of Alzhiemer's and I also learned the heart rending effects of it upon the family. I learned what it might be like to have the marriage vows of "in sickness and in health" and "until death do us part" tested, what taking God at His word in a horrendous situation and literally wipe away all excuses and rationalizations and doing what was right and the struggle and victory that come with it must feel like in this situation. It was a very impacting book.
I also learned that I find it hard to force myself to read when I am just not into it. I read voraciously. It's my favorite hobby and I can tend to lay other things aside to read, especially if it's a book that is totally capturing my attention. But when I fizzle out, I really fizzle out. It's like I need a little break. And that's ok too! At least I got some Christmas baking done. :v)
So that's it for the Fall Reading Challenge 2007. I'll have to bump a few of the books into the new year and my list of To Be Read books has once again grown exponentially as I've gone through your lists. I'm looking forward to getting back into reading as I have a whole week off from work. I picture myself in jammies and housecoat curled up on the couch, coffee with Southern Butter Pecan Creamer within close reach, and book in hand. The picture is looking mighty fine.