What We Are Reading Lately

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Book lists quickly grow long and unwieldy in our home, and often I do not keep up with them the way I intend to.  I do try to keep a running list of books we’re reading for “school,” but when it comes to our copious personal reading the book list is only as good as our memory.

And my memory is not that good these days.

I thought it might be fun to periodically check in with what we’ve been reading lately outside of school.  You might find some titles that look interesting, and we will have a way to look back and remember what we have read.

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Family Read Alouds with Dad

We are currently re-reading the Chronicles of Narnia as a family.  We had read most if not all of the series aloud to the older children, and are reprising the experience for the middle kids.  You can never read these too many times! We’ve finished The Magician’s Nephew and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; we’re in the middle of The Horse and His Boy.

Car Audiobooks

While the kids and I ride in the car, we are generally working through an audiobook.  Our recent driving-around-town audiobook was Treasure Island, a rollicking sea adventure story that all of us enjoyed.  On our recent road trip, the kids enjoyed The Magician’s Elephant.

Read Aloud with Mom

My friend, Kit, recommended Maniac Magee to me last December, and we finally began it over spring break.  We’re halfway through.  It is unlike any other book we’ve read; thought-provoking but also humorous.

12.5 year old Boy

Lord of the Rings

These audiobooks are the soundtrack to his life.  He just starts back at the beginning when he finishes the trilogy.

Atlas of Middle Earth

This is a resource for a mysterious project he is working on.

Minecraft Blockpedia and Minecraft Medieval Fortress Exploded Build

These interlibrary loans are research for an elaborate minecraft project he is creating.

Lilac Fairy Book

I downloaded several of the free Lang Kindle books several months ago.  Excellent for those random odd moments when you need something to read.

In the Beginning was the Word

This is a kindle book that he mainly reads on Sundays.

Shorter Catechism Study Guide

This book is for his Sunday School class.

Pride and Prejudice

He was motivated to read this so he could participate in the Pride and Prejudice movie party his sister was hosting.  In our house, if you haven’t read the book, you can’t watch the movie!

10.5 year old Girl

She also recently finished reading Pride and Prejudice, and hosted 6 other friends for a movie night to celebrate.

Bridge to Terabithia

She wanted to read this after hearing the author interviewed on the Read Aloud Revival Podcast.  She read it over spring break.  I knew she had finished it when she came out of her room wracked with sobs.  This of course made me start to cry too, so we just clung to each other for a few moments.

The next day she read the whole book again.  She said she cried less the second time through.

The Giver, Gathering Blue, Messenger, and Son (The Giver Quartet)

She is now pestering her older brother to read this series!

The Hiding Place

She has read this several times before (currently free on Kindle for prime members), but it is never a bad decision to read the story of Corrie Ten Boom again!

Vanderbeekers of 141st Street

I read this and immediately knew she would love it, too!  And she did.

7.5 year old and 6 year old girls

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

The 6 year old has felt increasingly left out of the Harry Potter loop.  The 7.5 year old (who prefers audiobooks to reading herself) had asked if she could start reading it aloud to her younger sister.  I finally caved in and let them begin reading it together, and we finished listening to the audiobook as a group.  Some of the older siblings might have been a bit aggrieved that she was allowed to read this book so much earlier than they were.  Oh well.


Our current favorite picture book.  We have probably read it 3 dozen times since the 6 year old bought her own copy at a thrift store in February.

Boxes for Katje

We constantly check out the audiobook and picture book from the library.  At some point it probably would make sense to just buy our own copy.  This is a moving story based on actual events set after WW2.

The Princess and the Goblin

This audiobook was one I allowed the 6 year old to listen to on her own first.  As a younger sibling, it is hard to have something you get to read before anyone else.  After she finished it, she listened to it again with her older sister.  It was fun for her to get to introduce her older sister to something for a change.

Ramona Quimby Audio Collection

This is one of the most worthwhile purchases I have ever made.  The narrator is fantastic.  You will laugh.  You will cry.  I’ve done both, sometimes simultaneously, while listening in to certain parts of this story.  The Ramona and Henry Huggins audiobooks are to the younger girls what The Lord of the Rings audiobooks are to my oldest son: they have become the soundtrack to their childhood.

2-almost-3 year old Boy

Apple, Pear, Orange, Bear

This is a board book he picked out all by himself at the library last week.  We’ve read it dozens of times since, and he still laughs at almost every page.

First Book About the Orchestra


This is such a fantastic book!  Each page shows you a little bit about different instrument groupings in the orchestra, and you can touch the page to hear what those instruments sound like.  This is a current favorite with our 2 year old and the 6 year old!  We also gave this as a gift to some of our nieces, and they have also really loved it!

(Side note: my sister-in-law is trying to get her new Usborne book business off the ground.  She has special incentives right now.  Up through April 26 she is even able to offer double rewards points!  Definitely check out more of what she has to offer by joining her facebook group.   I am not being compensated for this review.  I just really love this Orchestra book, and I love Nancy.)

The Little Engine that Could

A classic.  It combines trains and repetition, all the things he loves.

Make Way for Ducklings

Another classic and one of my personal favorite children’s picture books of all times.  One day I hope to travel to Boston and see the ducklings.

Sounds Like Fun and Bullfrogs and Butterflies

These 2 cds are the soundtrack to little mister’s life right now.  I know this is not exactly what he’s “reading,” but I do not ever want to forget hearing him sing “APPLE- A- A- A” and “Welcome to Agapeland.”


Rethinking School

I have really enjoyed listening to Susan Wise Bauer being interviewed on podcasts recently, since I think her perspective now has the value of life-experience that was missing in her early writings.  Here she is interviewed on Forma and on Bravewriter.  This book was fascinating, and I highly recommend it to any parents.

It is not a homeschool-specific book.  It would be a useful tool for anyone who has children in any type of educational setting.


I lead a small women’s biblestudy at my church, and we just finished using this book to study Isaiah.  This was a wonderful study.  I do not like biblestudy books that basically give you all the answers without you needing to delve deeply into the text.  This study guide provides guidance, but ensures you are reading widely throughout the Scripture to gain understanding.

I also was thankful that this study emphasized how any passage we were studying pointed to Jesus and the Gospel.  Particularly when studying the Old Testament, I think this is very important.  I am looking forward to our next study from the same series on the book of Acts.  If you would like to study along, send me an email or let me know on facebook.  If there is enough interest, I’d be willing to start a private group where we could do this biblestudy together.

Age of Opportunity

I am reading this book slowly.  I can only handle so much conviction at one time.  Tripp thrust a dagger in my heart as he pointed out the sinfulness of saying things like “how could you do this” to our children.

Shakespeare’s Sonnets

John has been reading 1 sonnet aloud to me at a time.  Basically so far the message of the first few sonnets is: “You are pretty now, but you’re going to get really old and ugly.  So make sure you have a child so at least they can be pretty.  By the way, remember you are not young and pretty anymore.  But at least you have pretty children.”

Pretty funny to read them at this stage of life.  Just waiting until we get to one of the more enjoyable sonnets that don’t point out my gray hair and crow’s feet.


I much preferred this Shakespeare this month.  To prepare for watching the Benedict Cumberbatch version, reprised in theaters for one night only, I listened to this audio dramatized version. (Side note: the NT Live performance was AMAZING! If they reprise it again, do all you can to watch it.)
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2LRdBjpMPM]

A Treacherous Curse

This is one of those gifts I gave to my future self.  I put this Veronica Speedwell book on hold several months ago when it was “On Order” at our library.  What a fun surprise to find on my hold shelf a couple weeks ago!  And since there were so many people on hold after me at the time, I felt justified stopping everything to read and enjoy this lighthearted Victorian adventure story.

What are you reading lately?

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5 thoughts on “What We Are Reading Lately”

  1. Thank you for sharing this list! I love a good list, and a good list of good books is pretty much like a birthday present to my whole family. 🙂

  2. I would love to see Benedict Cumberbatch perform Hamlet. I really enjoyed his acting in the Sherlock Holmes television series. Now I need to go read Hamlet in case Cumberbatch’s version of Hamlet becomes available on DVD. 🙂

      1. No, I have not. I will put that one on my list to watch. My older son will be reading Hamlet next month. When he is finished with the book I would like him to watch a Hamlet film with me. My husband suggested the Sir Laurence Olivier version. Maybe we will watch more than one version and see which we like best.

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