Ultimate Summer Reading List // History and Fantasy

Welcome to the first day of Not of this World’s Ultimate Summer Reading List Week! Today’s genre is “History and Fantasy.” The following books have been read by myself or NOTW readers. I tried my best to find books for various ages so I hope you find some good ones to put on your reading list. Enjoy!

Unshaken by Francine Rivers

 Description via amazon.com:  Writing in the trademark style that has won her countless fans, award-winning author Francine Rivers explores the courageous life of Ruth, a biblical ancestor of Jesus, in Unshaken, the third novel in her Lineage of Grace series. Empathy for the characters kicks in immediately. Naomi’s life is in ruins. Her husband and sons are dead, and she is left with only her beloved daughter-in-laws, Ruth and Orpah. Ruth turns her back on her own family and risks everything to care for Naomi, insisting “I will go wherever you go! I will live wherever you live! Your God will be my God.”

In the endearing manner that has made her one of the top writers of Christian fiction, Rivers portrays how Ruth’s unshaken commitment to God had a profound impact on biblical history. Her poignant account of Ruth’s life will give modern readers a benchmark by which to measure their own levels of faith and obedience.


Age: 12+

Why I loved it: It brings alive the Biblical story. -Carrie R.

Entwined by Heather Dixon

Description via amazon.com:  Just when Azalea should feel that everything is before her—beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing—it’s taken away. All of it. And Azalea is trapped. The Keeper understands. He’s trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. So he extends an invitation.

Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest, but there is a cost. The Keeper likes to keep things. Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late.


Age: 13+

Why I loved it: It is an historical fantasy, very suspenseful, and a beautiful rewrite of a classic fairytale. -Abby W.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Description via barnesandnoble.com: In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women-mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends-view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.


Age: 14+

Why I loved it: Stockett is a fabulous storyteller and I couldn’t put this book down. Her characters come alive in a way that is rare in literature. -Courtney R.

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

Description via amazon.com: California’s gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.

Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.

Then she meets Michael Hosea, a man who seeks his Father’s heart in everything. Michael obeys God’s call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Slowly, day by day, he defies Angel’s every bitter expectation, until despite her resistance, her frozen heart begins to thaw.

A powerful retelling of the Biblical story of Gomer and Hosea, Redeeming Love is a life-changing story of God’s unconditional, redemptive, all-consuming love.


Age: 16+

Why I loved it: Redeeming Love is a great story of God’s love for his people, the Israelites, even though they disobeyed time and time again, illustrated in the story of Hosea and Gomer. -Jessica B.

In the Garden of  Beasts by Erik Larson

Description via barnesandnoble.com: The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history.


Age: 16+

Why I loved it:  You get an insider’s perspective of the rise of Hitler in pre-WWII Germany. -Carrie R.

Half Broke Horses by Jeanette Walls

Description via barnesandnoble.com: Lily survived tornadoes, droughts, floods, the Great Depression, and the most heartbreaking personal tragedy. She bristled at prejudice of all kinds—against women, Native Americans, and anyone else who didn’t fit the mold. Rosemary Smith Walls always told Jeannette that she was like her grandmother, and in this true-life novel, Jeannette Walls channels that kindred spirit. Half Broke Horses is Laura Ingalls Wilder for adults.

Non-Fiction in the form of fiction

Age: 16+

Why I loved it: This is a really fascinating story of survival during hard times. It was really interesting thinking how different our lives are today compared to life  several decades ago. -Courtney R.


 Check in tomorrow for books perfect for babysitting, younger siblings, or tutoring! 



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