Tag Archives: holidays

Thanksgiving Reading List

I’m very thankful for my family, so in honor of Thanksgiving, I decided to post a list of some of my favorite books about families. I’ve limited it to fiction (or easy-to-read biography), not nonfiction/self-help/parenting.

In random order, but categorized for your convenience, here are a dozen suggestions for your Thanksgiving reading pleasure.

Contemporary (or close):

Cheaper by the Dozen/Belles on Their Toes, by Frank B. Gilbreth Jr. & Ernestine Gilbreth Carey (Biography. Hilariously funny, tremendously moving, and not even in the same class as the stupid new movies.)

Chickens in the Headlights, by Matthew Buckley (Biography. Also hilariously funny.)

Ramona Quimby series, by Beverly Cleary (Such an accurate portrayal of the ups AND downs of family life.)

Dear Lola: Or How to Build Your Own Family, by Judie Angell (A bunch of orphans face off the world to form their own family.)

North of Beautiful, by Christina Chen (A girl with a birthmark learns about true beauty and love.)

Historical:

The Glamorist Histories series, by Mary Robinette Kowal (“Jane Austen meets magic,” but so intertwined with family drama. Could also be filed under fantasy.)

The War That Saved My Life, by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (A confined girl is finally set free of her rooms and discovers what family should actually be like.)

The Five Little Peppers, by Margaret Sydney (Okay, so it’s pretty old-fashioned, but I love the way the siblings love each other so much.)

Fantasy:

Ordinary Magic, by Caitlen Rubino-Bradway (When an ordinary girl is born into a magical family, what will they do with her?)

Castle Glower series, by Jessica Day George (When you’re an ordinary princess in an extraordinary family, how do you find a place for yourself?)

The Princesses of Westfalin Trilogy, by Jessica Day George (The 12 Dancing Princesses, but better. And the series continues with other fairy tale retellings, so how can you go wrong?)

The Leland Sisters series, by Marissa Doyle (Historical YA romance, with sisters who are always there for each other.)

What are you thankful for this year? What book has made you the most thankful for something in your life?

Happy Thanksgiving (early),
M. C. Lee

Holidays and Hope

I’m going to break my pattern a little here, and talk about something other than books. Don’t worry, I’ll still be talking about hope and happy endings.

Christmas is my second-favorite holiday, right after Easter. Sure, I like chocolate and presents and family time and music, but that’s not why these two are my favorite. In fact, I’m not at all fond of the bunny and the man in the red suit, though I do try not to spoil the “fun” for other people’s children.

No, my preference for these two days is all about the Main Character in the story they tell. (Yes, I can talk about stories without talking about books.) You know Who I mean. Christmas is when we celebrate His birth, and Easter, to use literary terms, was the climax of His story. In fact, Easter heralds the climax of all our stories, all our happy endings.

Christmas reminds me of the hope the world felt at His birth. Hope that things would get better. Hope that people could find a way. Hope that their problems would end, but they would go on to a better chapter. Hope for relief from sorrow and pain. Hope for repentance and forgiveness. Hope for reconciliation and renewal. Hope for eternal life with His Father and ours. Hope is a powerful way to keep us turning pages, and we don’t have to worry about our hope being betrayed. The happy ending is waiting for us.

Easter is all our hopes fulfilled. Easter is when our Author autographed the book of our happy endings. Sure, we still have to read our personal stories, live through the ups and downs and story turns. And many times, the middle of the story is not much fun, whether we wrote it ourselves or someone else did. But at the end of each of our stories, there is a happy ending, thanks to Him. If we let Him sign our book, then whatever sad, happy, funny, or painful story covers most of the pages, the last page will share His story, His glory, His hope and happy endings.

How can you ask for a better story than that?

So during these holidays, look to the Light, the Life, and the Way. Look for hope and happy endings.

Be merry in Christ,

M.C. Lee