5 Books That Will Make Your World Feel A Bit Bigger

Howdy 🙂

Thought I’d pop in to share some of the books I read over winter break. I love to read all kinds of books, but the books I read over my break seemed to all have the same theme: They all took me out of my corner of the world and allowed me to somewhat experience different cultures/ways of life/hardships/love stories..etc. They each expanded my mind in their own ways.

Jason says I read “depressing” books. He doesn’t like to read, so I’ll read a book and tell it to him like a story from beginning to end. I can see how he would think these books are depressing, but I don’t view them that way. They just remind me to be thankful for what I have. Like I said, they gave me a glimpse into another (sometimes heart-wrenching) world and I appreciate them for it 🙂

So let’s get started! (In no particular order)

1. Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity

There were times this book was hard to read. I found myself getting so frustrated with the characters, but I also grew attached to them as well. The book is fast-paced and is based on Katherine’s 3 year observations of life in the undercity. She does a great job of portraying the people she followed and how they felt in certain situations. This book will definitely expand your mind. This book made me feel so incredibly blessed to live where I do and to have the life that I do. Go get it, like NOW 😉

2. The Suitcases by Anne Hall Whitt

This book is not very big, I think I read it in a day. But I personally loved it because the author grew up in my hometown Charlotte, NC. It was really neat when she’d mention certain places in the book and I was like “I’ve been there!!”. This book is about 3 orphan sisters (how they become orphans is very sad/tragic–I may have cried) being sent from foster home to foster home. Anne recounts the different foster homes and what they were like (some good, some creepy). I don’t want to give too much away, but it is worth the read! It’s very short and is kind of old but it is still a great autobiography.

3. Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World by Bob Goff

Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World

Surprise! This is a happy book! Jason would be so proud 😀 Before I read this, I thought it would be sort of self-helpy…like how to make yourself happier..that sort of thing. But it isn’t. It’s more an account of Bob’s like and situations he’s been in that have shaped who he is. I loved reading about his adventures, especially the adventures with his kids. Jason and I plan on implementing some of those ideas on our own family one day 🙂 This was a fun read, it had me laughing out loud. It’s kind of like story-telling with a side of life lessons. It’s delightful and I wish I knew Bob Goff because I feel like we’d be great friends, haha!

4. The Invisible Wall: A Love Story That Broke Barriers by Harry Bernstein

The Invisible Wall: A Love Story That Broke Barriers

Oh. my. gahhhh. This book is sooooo goooodddd. This book is about Harry and his siblings growing up in a town somewhere in Europe (?? I think) in the early 1900’s. The characters are very well portrayed, you feel what they are feeling, you laugh and cry with them. This was the last book I read during winter break. It has a sequel called “The Dream”, but I didn’t have time to read it! Can’t wait until I have time to read again, I’m going to get my paws on the sequel for sure. This book is mainly centered on Harry’s street. The Jews live on one side, the Christians on the other. It is a love story, but even beyond the love story, the mothers story alone is enough to make this book wonderful. Highly recommended!!

5. Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck

Travels with Charley: In Search of America

This book is about John and his French Poodle, Charley, driving across America. It’s delightful. I am a huge Steinbeck fan- if you haven’t read “The Pearl” or “East of Eden” either, then I highly suggest those too! This is a small book, easy to read. It is mainly about his adventures cross-country, the people he meets, the sights he sees, the things he learns and ponders. It’s kind of a broad view of America in his days, John also wrote this in his older days, after he was already “famous” for his other works. It’s a descriptive, relaxing read that takes you out into the country with Charlie at your feet 🙂


So there’s my top five (recent) reads! I have 147 books on my to-read list for when I finish school and I. can’t. wait. Jason and I are planning a celebratory camping trip for July, and camping trips and books go hand in hand if you ask me! School is chugging along fine so far.  I have my first exam in Zoology this Thursday. The hardest thing for me so far has been getting back into school mode after winter break. I have terrible senioritis. Don’ wanna do nufin’. But I’ll triumph! In Jesus Name! It’s already done 🙂 4 more months to go!

Also- I’d love to hear your book suggestions! I like all kinds and I’m not sure my to-read list is quite long enough 😉


Stacey B.



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