One of my favorite things to do this time of year is make a list of books I’d like to read in the year ahead.
If you’ve been following along with me for a while, you know I don’t always get to all the books I have planned (full confession), and sometimes, I deviate from my list in favor of other books that I encounter during the year.
This year, I’m choosing books from seven different categories:
Health & Lifestyle
Personal & Intellectual
Non-Fiction & Memoir
Thanks to the recommendations of several friends, a few neighbors, and social media friends who share what they’re reading throughout the year, I’m looking forward to getting to know a few new-to-me authors and delving into some new topics and genres.
Without further ado, here is my book list for 2019:
2019 Book List
Please note: some of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means if you decide to purchase through any of them, I will earn a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue creating free content. Thank you for your support!
Ask. (Ryan Levesque)
Learning what prospective clients and customers want and need is both an art and a science. In this book, Ryan Levesque delves into an innovative marketing strategy for online businesses based on asking the right questions. I’m excited to learn from him!
Deep Work (Cal Newport)
I’ve heard several people recommend this book in the last few months, so I’m looking forward to reading and learning the “rules for focused success in a distracted world” and putting these new principles into practice.
The Legal Guide to Social Media (Kimberly A. Houser)
I know, I know - not the most exciting read of the year, but goodness, what an important issue to learn about, especially for those of us who run online businesses.
Building a Story Brand (Donald Miller)
I’ve enjoyed getting to know Donald Miller’s work this past year, through his free video series and podcast. This book is all about marketing and psychology, building relationships with customers, and brand messaging.
Reading People (Anne Bogel)
From the Amazon description: “In her friendly, relatable style, Bogel shares engaging personal stories that show firsthand how understanding personality can revolutionize the way we live, love, work, and pray.”
Those of you who have been following along for a while may remember that this book was on my 2018 Book List, but I didn’t get to it! I have been enjoying Anne Bogel’s podcast, “What Should I Read Next?” and am looking forward to reading this book this year (it’s already on my nightstand!).
Blindspot (Mahzarin R. Banaji & Anthony G. Greenwald)
Blindspot refers to the hidden biases we carry with us, informed by years of cultural influence related to age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, social class, sexuality, disability status, and nationality. Most likely, a challenging, but very necessary read.
Everybody Always (Bob Goff)
Love Does is still one of my all-time favorite books, so I can’t wait to read Bob Goff’s latest book on what it means (and looks like) to love everybody, always.
Liturgy of the Ordinary (Tish Harrison Warren)
This book has been on my want-to-read list for a while. Tish Harrison Warren offers a thoughtful look at the sacred in the ordinary and the ordinary in the sacred - "a practical theology of the everyday."
Health & Lifestyle
Made to Stick (Heath)
I’ve heard great things about several of Chip and Dan Heath’s books (The Power of Moments, Switch, and this one) and am looking forward to reading this one first - about “why some ideas survive and others die.”
Come Matter Here (Hannah Brencher)
I read Hannah Brencher’s first book, If You Find This Letter, last year and loved it. She’s a wonderful writer and she has a beautiful perspective on life, faith, love, and self-discovery. I’m looking forward to reading more from her!
Personal & Intellectual
The Outward Mindset (Arbinger Institute)
This book came recommended by a good friend. It’s about developing an outward mindset (as opposed to an inward one) that’s focused on inclusivity, collaboration, and engagement.
Just Mercy (Bryan Stevenson)
This book has come up in a few different conversations for me recently - always a good sign that I should add it to my reading list! The book (a memoir) is about the author’s mission of compassion, and fighting for justice and redemption in criminal justice cases.
Also, if you’re interested, Bryan Stevenson was a recent guest on Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations. Listen to their full conversation here.
The Warmth of Other Suns (Isabel Wilkerson)
This is the bold and riveting story of the black citizens who, over the course of several decades, migrated from the South to cities in the North and Western parts of the country.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows)
So many people have said this is one of their favorite books of all time. Have you read it? Do you agree? I’m looking forward to reading it this year!
Non-Fiction & Memoir
Bird by Bird (Anne Lamott)
A classic, here Anne Lamott shares wisdom and humorous insight into her life as a writer, with advice on writing and life in general.
Bella Tuscany (Frances Mayes)
I love Frances Mayes’ poetic and lyrical writing so much and was especially drawn to her colorful descriptions of Italy in Under the Tuscan Sun. Looking forward to reading this follow-up book when it’s cold and snowy outside!
Tender at the Bone (Ruth Reichl)
I recently learned about Ruth Reichl from a post Erin Loechner shared (Erin is one of my favorite writers). I’m looking forward to reading this memoir.
The All-Girl Filling Station’s Last Reunion (Fannie Flagg)
I picked up Fannie Flagg’s Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe last year at a used book sale and loved it. I’ve since discovered that she has several other novels out, all with elements of mystery and intrigue and told with her signature humorous style.
If I have the time, here are a few other books I'd like to read this year:
Small Victories (Anne Lamott)
A collection of heartfelt essays on love and forgiveness, grace and transformation, dark periods and bright spots of hope in the midst of it all.
Come and Eat (Bri McKoy)
A book about hospitality, nourishment, the gift of time and attention, and the beauty of gathering around the table with friends and loved ones.
The Art of Possibility (Zander & Zander)
Written by Benjamin Zander (conductor of the Boston Philharmonic) and Rosamund Stone Zander (psychotherapist), this book outlines strategies and practices to help you infuse your professional and personal life with creativity and the hope of what’s possible.
Everything Happens for a Reason (Kate Bowler)
A personal and emotional story of love and fear, certainty and uncertainty, living and dying.
Have you read any of these? I'd love to hear your thoughts! What's on your book list this year?