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I’ve been on another mini-reading binge over the past few days. I discovered Coming Home, Danielle Steel’s very first novel, published way back in 1973, in my local WalMart. As usual, I started reading and couldn’t stop until I finished. But the extra treat was in knowing that this was how she began her career — with as delightfully solid a novel as any she has written since. Look for it at the library or your favorite bookstore.

Then Melody sent me another book box, and off I went again. First out of the box was Finding Me: A Decade of Darkness, a Life Reclaimed, by Michelle Knight. Michelle was the first of the three young women kidnapped by Ariel Castro in Cleveland, Ohio. Her story is so horrifying…but so compelling I read it nearly non-stop, too. So much of her story was of incredible cruelty that my mind was blown by the parts she chose not to share. Although this is definitely not bedtime reading, that’s exactly what I did. Stayed awake until 2:30 reading because I had to know how she got away. Not for the faint-of-heart, but definitely an amazing story of determination and grit.

Next in the stack was A Love Undone, by Cindy Woodsmall. This was billed as “an Amish novel of shattered dreams and God’s Unfailing Grace”, and it totally lived up to the description. The contrast between this and Finding Me was amazing. The story was told in such a sweet and simple way, but was compelling, non-the-less. Woodsmall has written three separate series of books involving the Amish community, and I will be looking for more of them. Thank you, Melody, for so many good reads.

I finished the last title in my reading binge this evening (and started on another one, but I’ll leave that for later). One of my doll club friends loaned me The Tinker’s Daughter, a story based on the life of Mary Bunyan, by author and doll artist Wendy Lawton. This is part of her “Daughters of the Faith” series, written for pre-teens and teens, and is woven around John Bunyan’s daughter Mary. I was first introduced to Pilgrim’s Progress by Louisa May Alcott, as Jo March and her sisters acted out portions of it in Little Women, and found Lawton’s depiction of 17th Century England very intriguing.

I think this catches me up from my last 2015 Reading Challenge Post.

2015 Reading Challenge: 12, 13, 14, 15/50.