As an editor, I read books for a living. Dream job! I love suggesting books to people, hoping that a new author or title will grab their attention and help them to see the world or their faith in a fresh way. A book can change your life!

Choosing just a handful of books as recommended summer reading is a bit like trying to choose your favourite child: impossible. So I have focused on books you can take on a trip, to the beach, to the park, or to your own backyard. Nothing too heavy, either in physical weight or in subject matter, but ones that will prompt you to reflect on where you are in your life’s journey and where you might go from here.

Since there are about eight weeks’ worth of reading in July and August, here are eight wonderful books published by Novalis over the past few years. I hope you’ll enjoy them and share them with others.

  • Big Things, by Gerry Turcotte: These hope-filled reflections remind us that the ordinary moments of our days can reveal extraordinary things: joy, faith, peace, community, love.  (Read Gerry Turcotte’s first book, Small Things, too!)
  • Crossword Christian, by Jim Dunn: Like a crossword puzzle, Christian discipleship offers us clues to help us find the answers we seek. This book offers heartfelt reflections and stories about seeking and finding love and wholeness in Christ.
  • A Cry Is Heard, by Jean Vanier with François-Xavier Maigre: The world lost a beautiful person when L’Arche Founder Jean Vanier died in May of this year. This 2018 book – part autobiography, part memoir, part call to action to walk a path to unity and peace –is profoundly inspiring and filled with hope.
  • Living Stewardship, by Darrin Gurr: This faith-filled book explores stewardship spirituality – gratitude, generosity and living in the moment – as one that is deeply linked to who and what God made us to be.
  • A Recipe for Faith, by Anne Jamieson: Our faith is a lot like cooking: it requires planning and creativity and calls us to both follow certain steps and go with the flow. This wonderful companion is filled with home-cooked wisdom, humour and great ideas to support your growth in faith.
  • Stray Devotions, by James Clarke: Fear. Joy. Faith. Doubt. Aging. Love. Longing.These are only a few of the themes in this poignant collection – food for the heart and the soul. First-place winner in the poetry category at the Catholic Press Association Book awards in June 2019!
  • Why Are We Here? by Mary Jo Leddy: Join writer, social activist and theologian Mary Jo Leddy on a fascinating journey of reflection on time and place, on encounter and mystery, on identity and living together. This is one you will want to reread – it gets even better each time.
  • Wine from Raisins, by Josef Svoboda: OK, this one is heavier, but what a story! This gripping memoir is a classic tale of triumph over adversity. Filled with insight, hope, humour and steadfast faith in God, despite at times horrific circumstances, Wine from Raisins is one man’s story of perseverance, idealism and a passionate love for all of God’s creation.

Happy reading and happy summer!

Anne Louise Mahoney, Managing Editor

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