All Things New: Summer 2015 Reading List

27 May 2015

Come broken and weary
Come battered and bruised
My Jesus makes all things new
All things new

Come lost and abandoned
Come blown by the wind
He'll bring you back home again
Home again...
andrew peterson | "all things new"

Reader, I graduated.

It happened this past Saturday, but sometimes I still have to question whether it really occurred or whether it's coming in a day or two. School and dance each met their own bittersweet conclusions over a week ago, but with graduation parties (we had my own just this Sunday) and general festivities still in swing, the reality of summer is taking its sweet time sinking in. Still, the facts are facts: I am now officially a homeschool graduate and a rising college freshman. (I even changed my about me page!)

For the first time in a long while, I have no dangling assignments or textbooks to finish up this summer and no English reading lists to be completed before the beginning of the autumn term. My time — notably my reading time — is my own, and that's exciting. (As in, crazy after-dinner kitchen-dancing exciting.) I may dabble in research as I first planned back in the winter, but if we're to be completely honest, I'll most likely end up savoring these all-too-quick months with whatever books take my fancy. It's delightful to think of Flannery in the early morning light with a cup of tea — Tolstoy or Brontë on rainy afternoons curled up on the couch — Rowling or Austen read on long car-rides or else pool-side — the thought before the substance is no less happy in this case. God is gracious and good, we have prevailed through winter's storms (literal and metaphorical), and His mercies are new every morning.

to read: summer 2015

anna karenina by leo tolstoy

mansfield park by jane austen

wuthering heights by emily brontë

go set a watchman by harper lee

mere christianity and the great divorce by c.s. lewis

the harry potter books by j.k. rowling (we'll see how far I get between now and mid-August)

the ballad of the white horse by g.k. chesterton

a tree grows in brooklyn by betty smith

mystery and manners and the complete stories (to be finished) by flannery o'connor

[And while we're throwing practicality and feasibility to the wind...]

the two towers and the return of the king by j.r.r. tolkien

What do you want to read this summer? Do you find your literary tastes change when paired with warmer weather?

Rise up, oh you sleeper
Awake, the light of the dawn is upon you
Rise up, oh you sleeper
Awake, He makes all things new.

13 epistles:

  1. Aaaah! Such a great list. You will be quite busy this summer. Mansfield Park was one of my favorites by Austen (seconded only by Persuasion). Anna Karenina is Tolstoy... so obviously it is amazing. Wuthering Heights is a good book to make you feel like life is well relatively okay compared to some unfortunate peoples. The LOTR are perfect summer adventures. And a Tree Grows in Brooklyn is one of my life-time inspiration stories. I haven't read the rest, but I'd love to hear more about what you think as you read!

    I just recently posted my summer reading list here:

  2. Congratulations, Chloe! Graduation is such bittersweet joy. It's sad to be moving on from so many people, activities, but at the same time it's exciting to have an unknown and adventurous future ahead! I love your reading list, by the way. "Mansfield Park" is actually one of my favorite books by Jane Austen. It starts out a little slow, but once I got into it I couldn't put it down until I was finished with it! Also, "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" isn't on my current reading list, but so many people have recommended it to me that I think I need to add it to the list. You'll have to let us know what you think of this book!

    Right now I am reading "The Blue Castle" by L.M. Montgomery, the "Wingfeather Saga" by Andrew Peterson, "Cinder" by Marissa Meyer and "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee.

    I've also been memorizing a lot of lines from Shakespeare's tragedy "Othello" and reading a lot of Emily Dickinson poetry. :)

    Dani from A Vapor in the Wind

  3. Congratulations on graduating! I love the poem you paired with this post. I've been debating whether or not to re-read the Harry Potter series this summer. I'd love to read them again, since I've only read them (excepting the first book) once, but there are so many other books I haven't devoured yet!

  4. I read The Ballad of the White Horse just recently and really enjoyed it! And I'd definitely recommend Anna Karenina too. Tolstoy has become one of my favorite classic novelists.

    I am relying on numbers of friends reading Go Set a Watchman first to let me know whether it's worth reading. :) I don't want it to spoil my enjoyment of To Kill A Mockingbird! And I'm interested in hearing your opinion of A Tree Grows In Brooklyn too; I've been waffling back and forth about reading that one for years.

  5. Oh, and I forgot to mention, I've got my summer reading list set to go up on my blog next Monday!

  6. Susanna, I think you've beat me for length on your own list. You have some excellent titles of your own. Best of luck with your summer reading!

    Dani, you've reminded me of a volume of Dickinson's poetry that's been on my bookshelf since I picked it up at Barnes & Noble in January, but haven't started yet. (I need to change that.) And I keep hearing good things about Mansfield Park, so I'm definitely going to try and knock that one off the list by summer's end. I'll do my best to share my thoughts on A Tree Grows in Brooklyn if I read it. ^_^

    Serena, the lyrics are from Andrew Peterson's song, "All Things New," which is one of my current favorites. (It's particularly good when I don't want to get out of bed in the morning. :P) I have the same debate every year: do I re-read what I already know to be good or do I focus on books I haven't read yet? I had half a mind to spend this summer just re-reading L.M. Montgomery's Anne books — there are some stories that never get old.

    Elisabeth, I think A Tree Grows in Brooklyn has been on my to-read pile for a good three years — maybe this will be the year I finally pick it up and finish it? If I do, I'll be sure to let you know what I think of it.

  7. It's because of you and Carmel that I'm now toying with the idea of reading the Harry Potter books. I have yet to determine whether I want to actually delve into them or not. We'll see. :)

    'A Tree Grows in Brooklyn' is also on my reading list. (Heh. The list I'm speaking of is in my head, and I'm actually compiling it officially as I type this. You see, there are several books on my shelf that have yet to be read.)

    I'd also like to read 'Mansfield Park' sometime soon, and, funny enough, I never finished reading 'Return of the King.' I ought to do that.

    Oh, and you most definitely need to tell me if 'Go Set a Watchman' is any good when you're finished with it. :) (Like, maybe, *cough*, let me borrow it, *cough*, along with 'Starflower', *cough*.)

  8. Em, so far I've been dragging my feet through HP -- we'll see if it picks up as I get further into the story. Depend upon it, m'dear: you will get the low-down. ;) I'll also keep you in mind when I read Harper Lee's new book... I'm so anxious to keep it from spoiling my enjoyment of To Kill a Mockingbird. Come and borrow it, by all means, and stay for some mint tea when you do. <3

  9. Looks like a great list! Lots of good, weighty books on there. I keep meaning to read 'Anna Karenina,' but it hasn't happened so far. And the Lord of the Rings books! To date, I haven't read a single book by Tolkien, but I'm hoping to correct that some time soon.

    Right now, I'm working on Suzannah Rowntree's 'Pendragon's Heir,' which is the second item on my list (first being Charles Williams's 'War in Heaven.' I finished that last week.) After that, I'll reread 'To Kill a Mockingbird' just to refresh my memory before 'Go Set a Watchman' comes out. (I can't wait for that one! ^.^) After that, I think I'll try 'Dandelion Wine' by Ray Bradbury. Bradbury is one of my favorite authors and I've been looking forward to that book for a long time. :)

  10. How exciting that you'll be reading Lee's Go Set a Watchman. Looks promising! Of course, I haven't even read To Kill a Mockingbird yet... but alas, I will, I will one day.

    This summer I'm looking forward some classics myself -- Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott (as part of my Alcott reading challenge in June!), a couple more Narnia books I haven't read yet, the last 2 volumes of the Elsie Disnmore originals, and The Little Prince. Since my summer first began (a couple weeks ago now!), I've already began reading 2 others that I've been looking forward to for quite a while -- The Prince and the Pauper, and Rebecca. *takes a moment to breath*

    This is a summer reading list that excites me greatly. =)

  11. Aww...congrats, dear Chloe! My how time has flown! A Tree Grows In Brooklyn is an amazing, life changing book. You'll have to let me know what you think! xoxo

  12. Hanna, maybe if we both read Anna Karenina we'll have enough motivation to make it through all eight-hundredish pages. And you must read Tolkien's books! The best way to begin is with The Hobbit, and then the Lord of the Rings, of course.

    Tarissa, your summer list looks fantastic! I want to read The Little Prince at some point; both my American Lit teacher and my French teacher love it. How did you feel about Rebecca? It's been so long since I've read it; I'm thinking a re-read is in order... just as soon as I can scrounge out some time.

    Nän, you know I'll be chatting with you when I read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. After all, you're the main reason it's been on my to-read list for so long. ^_^

  13. I have To Set a Watchman on my list too. I am excited for it.


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