Marriage Book Library

January 22, 2012

I thought it might be a good idea to create a “library” of marriage books to recommend to y’all. If you want to build your marriage, these books are really solid. They are high on substance and low on chaff.

Please feel free to leave reviews of helpful marriage books as a comment to this page. I’d like for this list to help ladies find great book resources.

General Marriage
Devotionals
Studying Your Spouse
Communication & Resolving Conflict
Married Sexuality
Sexual Problems
Womanhood
Lifestyle
Finances

 

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General Marriage

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GRACE FILLED MARRIAGE by Dr. Tim & Darcy Kimmel

If I could get everyone to read one marriage book, this would be the book. Beautiful writing style, humor and clearly defined concepts that will help you poor more grace (and joy) into your marriage. 
Hardback or Kindle

REAL MARRIAGE by Mark & Grace Driscoll

This book covers a number of subjects in a thorough and thoughtful way. I was impressed with the authors’ transparency and willingness to discuss what are normally difficult subjects, including sexuality. I also appreciated their perspective of teaching principles and leaving the specific application/method to couples. I think this would be an excellent study and discussion book for any couple.
Paperback or Kindle

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Devotionals

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THE LOVE DARE: DAY BY DAY

Love is a daily choice. This devotional can help with 365 devotional readings and 52 weekly dares.
Paperback 

THE LOVE & RESPECT EXPERIENCE by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

This husband-friendly book has 52 chapters (one a week) designed to help you stop the Crazy Cycle, build upon the Rewarded Cycle, and use the Energizing Cycle.
Imitation Leather or Kindle

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Studying Your Spouse

THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES by Gary Chapman

This is a fairly old book, but it’s solid and because of that has become a classic. I think understanding the concepts and terms used in this book would help in understanding your spouse and could be used to make communication easier (always a good thing).
Paperback or Kindle

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Communication & Resolving Conflict

         

THE 3RD ALTERNATIVE by Stephen R. Covey

This book is not specifically a “marriage book,” but the concepts are so important to dealing with conflict that married couples will benefit. The book talks about creative options that meet the heart needs of those involved in conflict. There are really many possible options beyond the usual two options proposed.
Paperback or Kindle

RESOLVING EVERYDAY CONFLICT by Ken Sande

If you are looking for a practical, biblical, concise guide to peacemaking in everyday life, this is the book.
Paperback or Kindle

LOVE & RESPECT by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

You can break the Crazy Cycle and build love and respect into your marriage.
Hardback or Kindle

CUE CARDS FOR LIFE by Christina Steinorth, MA, MFT

This book has a number of “cue cards” (gentle reminders) that help you think and communicate better with your loved ones. It’s a very practical resource.
Paperback or Kindle

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Married Sexuality

         

THE GOOD GIRL’S GUIDE TO GREAT SEX by Sheila Gregoire 

This a wonderfully encouraging book. It addresses a lot of sexual issues that usually get ignored and puts sex into a healthy perspective, exploring not just the physical side of sex, but also the emotional and spiritual aspects of sex. And, boy howdy, she will make you laugh.
Paperback or Kindle

Sheila has also authored the ebook 31 Days to Great Sex, a 31 day challenge.

PASSION PURSUIT by Linda Dillow and Dr. Juli Slattery

This is a wonderful Bible study on married sexuality. 
Paperback, Kindle or DVD series 

A CELEBRATION OF SEX by Douglas E. Rosenau

I would recommend this book as a first book about married sexuality as there is a good deal of foundational information. I think it would also be an excellent book to read and discuss with your spouse as a way of opening up discussion on a number of topics.
Paperback or Kindle

SHEET MUSIC by Kevin Leman

This is a delightful book about married sexuality. “It’s not just a how-to-do-it manual,” writes Leman. “This is more of a do-it-yourself look at why to do it and how to do it better.” He addresses a number of sexual issues quite frankly.
Paperback or Kindle

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Sexual Problems

   

THE FANTASY FALLACY by Shannon Ethridge

This is an difficult and challenging book. The numbers are growing when it comes to people caught in sexual woundedness and sin and God wants to help, heal and set us all free. This is an amazing tool that can help.
Paperback or Kindle

FALSE INTIMACY by Harry Schaumburg

The subtitle is Understanding the Struggle of Sexual Addiction. This is an insightful book that can help you understand how porn addiction happens and how to walk toward restoration. It includes a chapter on porn proofing your kids.
Paperback   Kindle

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Womanhood

      

YOU’RE ALREADY AMAZING by Holley Gerth

Reading this book is like a hug, a great cup of coffee and the best encouragement you’ve ever had all rolled into one.

Holley walks you through a number of simple exercises to discover your unique design and, in doing so, helps you toss a load of lies and wrong expectations off of your back. Each page offers an insight, a bit of wisdom or an encouragement. 
Paperback or Kindle

Holley has also authored You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream and Opening the Door to Your God-Sized Dream.

FIERCE WOMEN: THE POWER OF A SOFT WARRIOR by Kimberly Wagner

This is a very challenging book. From my perspective it is hugely about integrity and allowing God to shape how you express your inner strengths, particularly in the marriage relationship. 

The book would be great for personal study or small discussion groups. There are truckloads of very challenging questions and you get a bird’s eye view of the author’s personal struggle in this area. I found her story to be very encouraging and insightful.   Paperback  or Kindle

THE RESOLUTION FOR WOMEN by Priscilla Shirer

Do you want to make wise choices and be integrity driven? This would be a good fit.
Paperback or Kindle

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Lifestyle

         

MARGIN by Richard Swenson

This is another “not a marriage book,” but it could very well save your marriage. Busyness and stress are killers of relationships. We need to slow down, appreciate our loved ones and build a sane lifestyle.
Paperback or Kindle

SIMPLIFY and INSIDE-OUT SIMPLICITY by Joshua Becker

In a similar vein, I would recommend these two Kindle books. These are books that will help you sort out your values and dreams and point you toward a sane and simple lifestyle. Great marriage building tools.
Simplify, Kindle    Inside-Out Simplicity, Kindle

LOVE DOES by Bob Goff

Wow, what an amazing book. It’s full of stories about love in action, not love in thought, talk or hope. Love does.
Paperback or Kindle

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Finances

THE TOTAL MONEY MAKEOVER by Dave Ramsey

This is the textbook for Financial Peace University. I highly recommend that you attend an FPU near you, but, in a pinch, the book itself is a great resource. Get a handle on your finances before they get a handle on your marriage.  
Hardback

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

jill hoke March 8, 2012 at 5:10 am

My husband and I read For Men Only and For Women only by Shaunti and Jeff Feldnahn at the same time. They were both great.

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Beth Evans March 8, 2012 at 5:46 am

We read “A Celebration of Sex” by Dr Douglas E. Rosenau. It is very informative and easy to read, written by an experienced marriage and sex therapist. It is both for couples who are struggling with sex/marriage and also for those who are happy with where they are but want to make it even better.

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Vicki March 8, 2012 at 9:39 am

I have a lot of books “love books” my favorites are: “Love life for every married couple by Ed Wheat M.D.” “The Love Dare” “The Man of Her Dreams The Woman of His” & “The Man of Her Dreams The Woman of His 2 by Joel and Kathy Davisson” Marriage Fitness by Mort Fertel” and a bunch by Gary Smalley.

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Barbara March 8, 2012 at 11:54 am

Agree whole heartedly with the rec for For Women Only!!! I just started it. Wish I had read had something like it to read before I got married in 1990.

Also Romancing your Husband by Debra White Smith

and Love Notes on His Pillow by Linda Jeffords Gilden

Don’t know if you are limiting this to Christian Authors but I can’t say enough about Dr. Laura’s books either

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Nicole March 9, 2012 at 10:54 am

Our moms’ small group is reading “Finding the Hero in Your Husband – Surrendering the Way God Intended” by Dr Julianna Slattery. It’s meant for wives to read, but it can definitely improve your marriage!

I also really enjoyed reading Sheila Wray Gregoire’s book, “Honey, I Don’t Have A Headache Tonight.”

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Carmen April 29, 2012 at 4:37 pm

I have read so many marriage books… few are awesome but… Safe Haven Marrige by Dr Archibald Hart is a reread for sure. Made so much sense with the issues we face. It is the only one I bought for my soon to be married brother! :)

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chido March 1, 2013 at 6:33 am

i have always learnt a lot from Jimmy Evans dvd’s he is really goog his teachings are practical

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CarolinaMoon November 2, 2013 at 5:36 am

“The Meaning of Marriage” by Dr. Timothy Keller is probably the very best book I’ve ever read on marriage. In fact, it is not only about marriage but about all relationships and how God uses our personal relationships to draw us closer to Him in the midst of our sinful, selfish lives. When we can learn to put other people first, whether it’s a child, parent, friend or our spouse, we will have accomplished a lot. Not a feel good book about what is wrong with the other person but what God wants to accomplish in me………….

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