April Wrap Up + PopSugar Challenge Update

If we’re being honest, this is the saddest wrap up I think I’ve ever written. Seriously. I know that April isn’t QUITE over yet, but I can promise you that I won’t be reading anything else over the weekend because I have a LOT to do.

I read four books in April. Four. Three, if we’re being truthful, all the way through. And none of them counted a thing for my PopSugar Challenge, so that is still standing at 10/40, as it was in my March wrap up. Here’s what I DID read in April!

22320455If the Oceans Were Ink by Carla Power is a powerful spiritual memoir about her friendship with a Muslim Sheikh and her desire to understand the Quran for herself. This is for my Spiritual Journeys class, and by far is my favorite that we’ve read in the class. I wrote a longer review of it if you’d like to learn more!

Though I did not read the entirety of this work, I am counting Fyodor220px-notes_from_underground_cover Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground to this list. I gave it two stars on Goodreads, because what I did read was almost impossible to get through and really, really boring. It was useful for my senior seminar, yes, but as pure reading enjoyment … no. I also didn’t review this, and have no plans to. You’re welcome.

514qc9qdphl-_sx325_bo1204203200_I FINALLY FINISHED GET IN TROUBLE BY KELLY LINK! If you didn’t catch Michaela’s last 30 Seconds to Disagree, then you might not understand why that’s all in CAPs but … trust me. I’ve had Taylor’s copy of this book in my apartment since last semester, and he was getting really angry with me about it. BUT. I finally finished it! A longer review of this will be coming in May.

My one enjoyable, read it in a day read–my only for a while, really–23308084was Renee Ahdieh’s The Rose and The Dagger. This is the sequel to The Wrath and The Dawn, which was one of my favorite books of 2015 AND the very first book I showcased in my Worth It Wednesday series. A longer review of this will be coming later, but … well. I have thoughts. And not all of them good, sadly.

So … yeah. That’s it. There should have been more, but there wasn’t. School is crazy, guys. Hopefully May will bring better things! At the very least, school ends pretty soon, so I should have more opportunities to read then!

Advertisements

Weekly Wrap Up + What We Read 4/10/16

This week, I am the queen of posting! I am not, however, the queen of reading. That falls to Michaela. Once again, I genuinely forgot about how much different stuff we put together for you guys this week. There’s tags and reviews and giveaways, oh my! But seriously, you don’t want to miss any of this. Here we go!

Monday:

Tuesday:

Wednesday:

Thursday:

Friday:

Review: “If The Oceans Were Ink” by Carla Power

22320455If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran by Carla Power

Goodreads | Amazon

If the Oceans Were Ink is Carla Power’s eye-opening story of how she and her longtime friend Sheikh Mohammad Akram Nadwi found a way to confront ugly stereotypes and persistent misperceptions that were cleaving their communities. Their friendship-between a secular American and a madrasa-trained sheikh-had always seemed unlikely, but now they were frustrated and bewildered by the battles being fought in their names. Both knew that a close look at the Quran would reveal a faith that preached peace and not mass murder; respect for women and not oppression. And so they embarked on a yearlong journey through the controversial text.

A journalist who grew up in the Midwest and the Middle East, Power offers her unique vantage point on the Quran’s most provocative verses as she debates with Akram at cafes, family gatherings, and packed lecture halls, conversations filled with both good humor and powerful insights. Their story takes them to madrasas in India and pilgrimage sites in Mecca, as they encounter politicians and jihadis, feminist activists and conservative scholars. Armed with a new understanding of each other’s worldviews, Power and Akram offer eye-opening perspectives, destroy long-held myths, and reveal startling connections between worlds that have seemed hopelessly divided for far too long.

4 stars

Up until this point, I haven’t been too impressed by the books that I’ve been reading for my Spiritual Journeys class. Stephen Dubner’s Choosing My Religion was written poorly and lacked much depth. The second book, Monique and the Mango Rains by Kris Holloway, was even more surface level with a hidden amount of white privilege on top. I still haven’t finished the third one due to missed classes.

This book, however, changed everything. Here, at last, was the deep kind of inter-religious engagement that I had been looking for all this time, with an author I trusted to do the subject justice.

Continue reading