Monday, April 11, 2016

On the Bookshelf: Two Book Reviews

I'm a sucker for self-help books some days. There's something so positive about focusing on growth and change and learning ways to be the best version of yourself and become the woman God created you to be. I definitely believe God uses both spiritual practices and practical means to help mold us. Gretchen Rubin, while not particularly spiritual, has some great practical tips on living a happy, intentional life. I've read parts of her previous book, The Happiness Project, so when I saw her new book Better Than Before was available, I was excited. 

This book focuses on habits. How we form them, why they're useful, why we avoid them. Her writings are based on observation more than science, but this provides a friendly, casual tone to her books, making her a fun, relatable author to read. 

My favorite part of the book was learning about the different personalities when it comes to habits. Rubin organizes them into four types or tendencies-- the Obliger, the Upholder, the Questioner, and the Rebel. Knowing your tendency helps you realize better how you relate to habits and why it may be easier or harder to form them. I tend towards being an Upholder. I feel bound to both inner and outer expectations, so habits and rules are very helpful for me. (The Rebel, on the other hand, resents any type of expectation so it's harder for a Rebel to appreciate habits and routine). 

My least favorite part of the book was simply the length of it. While the information and ideas were fascinating, it was hard to justify reading a whole book on the topic and I ended up skimming a lot of the pages simply because I'd rather learn about the topic in little bites or articles than a large book. Perhaps if I were to read this book in a longer period of time (one chapter a month, etc.) I would feel differently, but reading it in a shorter period of time made some of the material seem redundant or less crucial. 

3.5 stars :)

[Thank you to Blogging for Books for a complimentary copy in exchange for a review. This review contains my honest and original thoughts.]

I'm getting addicted to children's books. They are just so darn adorable and it melts my heart to think of reading them to our little one soon!

Night, Night Daddy was a beautiful board book with a sweet story about a daddy and his child playing together throughout the day and then getting ready for bedtime. They reminisce about their day of flying kites, making pancakes, having a bubble fight, and building a fort. I love the way God is woven into this book so simply yet so poignantly. As the daddy and child look up at the sky, the daddy explain's God's power and how He created the moon and stars. At bedtime the dad tells the story of Daniel and the lion's den and then they pray together. So precious. 

I love the story, the quality, and the illustrations in this book. 5 stars :)

[Thank you to BookLook Bloggers for my complimentary copy. This review contains my honest and original thoughts.]


  1. Aww, getting excited for you as you're preparing for baby! That book sounds precious. I'm in the middle of Better than Before right now and feel similarly to you...some parts are pretty interesting (personality types!), but it's getting looong. It sure makes me think about habits I need to form or change, but I'm still not feeling like I know how to change them. Gah! Habits are hard. But more than anything else, it makes me realize how important they are to pay attention to :-) Love your reviews!

    1. Yes! Your description of Better than Before is just how I feel too! I still really want to create some better habits though, hee hee.