"There is no more lovely, friendly and charming relationship, communion or company than a good marriage."
--Martin Luther

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Top Ten Tuesdays: Top Ten Books Dealing with Tough Subjects

I'm once again joining in the blog link-up Top Ten Tuesdays, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.  Today's topic is Top Ten Books that Deal with Tough Subjects.  Some of mine are fiction, and some are non-fiction.  A word to new readers:  I am a Christian, so many of my choices reflect my faith  

1.  A Return to Modesty by Wendy Shalit. This book is the antidote to the ideals espoused by "Sex and the City".  Shalit opines that our over-sexualized culture actually hurts young women especially, and that modesty, rather than being old-fashioned prudery, is actually fulfilling and empowering.

2.  If God Is Good by Randy Alcorn.  A book that looks at the age old question:  If God is good, why is there evil in the world.  I found it a challenging and rewarding read.

3.  The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis.  Only Lewis can take a difficult topic like demons and spiritual warfare and turn it into a beloved novel.  I felt like I had to pause after each page to ponder the significance of what was being said.  Need to read this one again soon!

4.  The Meaning of Marriage by Timothy and Kathy Keller.  You already know how much I love this book.  I list it under tough subjects because with all the marriage books out there, it's hard to write one that stands out and because I give props to the Kellers for saying that marriage is hard because we're all selfish at heart.   Yet the book left me feeling positive and encouraged me to work on my marriage.

5.  When Helping Hurts by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert.  I'm kind of cheating here as I haven't finished this one yet, but I'm 30% through and thoroughly fascinated.  The authors tackle the fact that so much of development work actually leaves people worse off than they were before.  They challenge readers, especially middle class North American Christians, to examine their own perspectives before thinking they know all the answers.  A great read!

6.  The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold.  I thought I wouldn't like this book because if it's rough subject:  the rape and murder of a young teen; however, it was gripping and provided an interesting view of a horrible situation.

7.  My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult.  This book takes the reader into the midst of a family dealing with cancer, not just the medical problems, but also sibling rivalries, issues in marriage, etc.  It leaves you pondering a lot of questions on medical ethics and consent.

8.  The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  This book really embodies a lot of what When Helping Hurts says:  that if we go into another culture to help without fully understanding it, we will often do harm.  It is a powerful and gripping novel of an American missionary family in Congo.

9.  Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro.  Gahhh, I can't believe I forgot this one.  If you've never read it, I can't tell you why it's extremely thought provoking and disturbing, but it is.


  1. I've read The Lovely Bones and My Sister's Keeper. Both books are very good!

  2. Oooh, I didn't even think of SCREWTAPE LETTERS, but that's a really good pick. It deals with lots of tough issues in a unique way. Your #1 sounds really interesting -- modesty is something my church really focuses on and something I really believe in. Thanks for the rec!

    1. Thanks! Return to Modesty is really thought-provoking. The author is actually a conservative Jew who grew up in a liberal household, so it's interesting to see how she came at modesty from outside a church perspective, yet she too sees how it can be empowering. I really recommend it.

  3. Excellent choices! I am so pleased that you allowed your Faith to guide your choices. There are many who would not. Screwtape Letters is an excellent choice and the one you have yet to finish sounds wonderful!

    Here is our Top Ten for the week. We look forward to seeing you on Harlie's Books!

    1. Thanks for stopping by and for your kind words! I really do need to re-read Screwtape Letters one of these days.