Sunday, January 26

12 Books in 12 Months (12x12)

As I'm sure you remember from my 2014 resolutions, I really want to read at least 12 books this year. With work, law school and life, I hardly read at all last year and I'm pretty sure I only read one new book. So, for this new year, I really wanted to change that.

Reading has always been a huge part of my life. When I was little, I would stay up late reading almost every night. I was completely obsessed with the Animorphs series. It's actually what J and I first bonded over when we were 7, haha. Whenever I was feeling down, I would pull a book from my bookshelf and read. It always seemed to put things in perspective for me; even if I was mad at my mom for something, I would read about someone who had far greater problems than me. My anger would dissipate and I would leave my room feeling so much better than when I entered it.

I also have a "bad" habit of re-reading books instead of reading new ones. I get attached to stories and characters, and when I know how a book makes me feel, it's a lot easier to pull it off the shelf when I need it. For example, Anne of Green Gables is one of my favorite books of all time. I've re-read the book at least 10 times, probably more. I literally miss Anne when I haven't read the book in a while, like a childhood friend I haven't seen recently. I re-bought the book in London when I missed her.

Anyway, because of this habit, I don't tend to read new books. But how am I going to make new literary friends if I don't read new books? So for my 12 books in 12 months, I chose only books that I haven't read (or finished - I kind of cheated with a few of them).

Without further adieu, here are my 12 books! (Mind you, these are in no particular order)

Game of Thrones: The Song of Ice & Fire - George R. R. Martin
I started reading this book in 2012, and I'm still not done. I got about a fourth of the way through it before I stopped reading. Maybe it was because J and I were moving, maybe it was because I started watching "GIRLS." I don't know. Whatever the reason, I have just about a third of the book left and I am absolutely obsessed. A third of this book will still take me a while, but since I'm deep into it right now, this is the first book I'm going to read this year. Hopefully I'll start making time for this instead of Netflix this weekend and next week!

Study Smart, Study Less - Anne Crossman
This is a pretty small book, so I'm hoping I can finish it in a day. I'm also hoping to finish this one pretty early on so I can use some of the tips for law school!

Women Food & God - Geneen Roth
It's no secret that I've struggled with weight issues and self-love, so when my mom bought me this book, I was definitely excited to read it. But as all books that come around Christmas in my life, it got shoved onto the back burner. It seems like it's kind of a hippie way of looking at spirituality and food, but that's totally my jam, haha.

God and Boobs: Balancing Faith & Sexuality - Angie Schuller Wyatt
This was also a Christmas present that got forgotten on my book shelf. My college roommates and I had long discussions about how the Christian faith views sexuality (or, more often then not, tries to avoid sexuality). I'm really excited to see how this book addresses it. I have no idea if I'm going to be swayed either way, but I'm trying to keep an open mind to what this book has to offer, because I have a feeling it's going to be incredibly thought-provoking!

Breaking Through the Stained Glass Ceiling: Women Religious Leaders in Their Own Words - Marueen E. Fiedler
This is a book of interviews by Fiedler on interfaith issues, gender equality, and women church leaders. I've kind of been obsessed with it since the moment I got it, and it discusses my main topics of interest in scholastic Christianity! If you couldn't tell, there are a lot of religious books in my 12, mainly because they're the ones I haven't read. I'm really interested in seeing how my faith changes this year because of them.

Catherine The Great: Portrait of a Woman - Robert K. Massie
I'm a history nut, but mostly about Tudor England... But I think I might be a changed woman after this book. It's about (surprise) Catherine the Great, who was a German princess who became the Empress of Russia. Just from the inside cover, I'm pretty sure I'm going to fall in love with her swiftly and entirely!

Letters to a Young Poet - Rainer Maria Rilke
My mom sent me this book while I was in London and thinking about becoming a writer. I'll admit, I've read parts of it, but never a substantial chunk, let alone the entire thing. It's actually really short - only 68 pages - so this will definitely be one of the shortest reads. I feel like this is a classic though, and fully deserving of the time it'll take to understand the flowery language!

Dating Jesus: A Story of Fundamentalism, Feminism, & The American Girl - Susan Campbell
I've already read parts of this book as well. I started several years ago and got to the point of her childhood baptism in elementary school, so clearly I didn't get very far! I really love how Campbell writes and her witty sense of humor! It's almost Catlin Moran-ic, haha.

Sex With Kings: Five Hundred Years of Adultery, Power, Rivalry, & Revenge - Eleanor Herman
I've read several chapters of this book, but never finished it. It's amazing though! It's basically about all the famous mistresses throughout history - what they were like, how long they were mistresses, and why they were loved by their respective kings/presidents/etc. It's kind of crazy to think how much these women changed the world from their beds. Not that I think women today should be doing that (I'm fully capable of changing the world from my desk, thank you very much), but it's a really interesting, captivating read!

Bossypants - Tina Fey
I don't know how I haven't read this yet. I'm embarrassed. Getting on this train ASAP.

Good Girls, Bad Girls: The Enduring Lessons of Twelve Women of the Old Testament - T.J. Wray
As you could probably tell from the title, this book looks in-depth at 12 biblical women. We assume a lot of characters in the Bible were "whores or virgins," but this book looks deeper into their stories. I got this a few years ago but never read it! Whoops!

Grimm's Fairy Tales
I'm 2/3 of the way through this, but haven't read it in the past year. I started reading it my senior year of college and stopped some time after J and I moved into our apartment in Coralville. You understand nothing of fairy tales until you read these. Like, you think Sleeping Beauty got woken up with a kiss? Technically. The prince raped her unconscious body first. Personally, I think it was wise for Disney to gloss over that part. They're a lot darker and a lot more full of death than the ones we remember from our childhood, but these are the real deal! I'm actually super excited to keep reading these. Even though I've read a lot of the book, it's small type and over 500 pages, so that last third will definitely take a while!


Phew, that was a lot! My plan for this project is to post when I've finished a book, along with my thoughts on the book, how I liked it, what I learned, etc. Hopefully the first post will be soon, but I can't make any promises. Law school's pretty demanding, haha. I hope to read a lot over any breaks that I have, like when I go to Hilton Head over UNH's "winter break," which is in late February. And of course, my goal is to read these 12 - it doesn't mean than I can't read more than that! :)

Have you read any of these books? What books are you reading right now that you'd recommend?


  1. An awesome post! I read only Game of Thrones, God and Boobs and Bossypants. Now I want to read Sex With Kings.
    If you liked Bossypants you should check Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang by Chelsea Handler and Seriously... I'm Kidding by Ellen DeGeneres.

    Anna xox

    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! :) How did you like "God and Boobs?"

      I can definitely put that on the list for later! I absolutely LOVED "How to Be a Woman" by Caitlin Moran, and I feel like they're all in the same vein.

      xo Madie

  2. Bossypants is HILARIOUS. I finished it in like two days haha

    1. Seriously, I can't WAIT to read it. Super embarrassed I haven't read it yet! :P

      xo Madie