Bookshelvesphoto © 2006 Alexandre Duret-Lutz | more info (via: Wylio)I am nerdypassionate about a number of things. Little things like funny words and good coffee and an irrational dislike for tomato soup. Big things like Jesus and hope and stories. Two really big things for me are books and music. If you’ve known me for any period of time, you totally saw that coming. :)

As you’ve also seen if you’ve been here for a while, I like to write reviews, and between a growing to-read pile and iTunes library, I feel like I’m in a constant stream of newness. It’s an exciting place to be, not to ride the wave of trends, but to always be on the lookout for new discoveries and favorites. There comes a time though, where it just gets overwhelming.

Not so long ago while coming off a busy time of music writing, I was driving and listening to some new release or other, and I felt a little lost. For all the first time reads I’ve pushed through and the new music skimming by on my iPod for a listen or few before I move on to the next shiny new thing, I found myself missing that feeling of total, blissful immersion in something familiar, something I knew I loved.

Does that make sense? It’s the album that you can’t take out of your CD player for days because the first song is as good as the last and demands a repeat. It’s the book you read five times but you pick it up again because the words are as meaningful as they were the first time. It’s that movie you’ve seen so many times you spontaneously quote it because some random situation reminds you of a scene. That’s what I craved.

So I dedicated the rest of the week to some favorite albums. (On CD, for repeatability.) And I picked up a fantasy novel I’d already read twice and enjoyed every minute in that familiar world. It was awesome. I recommend it.

It also gave me the motivation to introduce an idea for the blog that’s been brewing a while…

Presenting: Deeper.

Deeper is what I hope will be a quasi-regular review series on Divinest Sense, not of the latest or necessarily the greatest, but of the books and albums (or authors and artists) that have stirred up something deep in me for whatever reason. Instead of just a “I like/hate this and here’s why you should too” review, my goal is to dig below the surface to figure out why it means so much to me, and my hope is that it might inspire you to discover something new and examine your own favorite art. In the future, assuming this isn’t an epic flop, I’d love to have some guest posts on the subject too, so it’s not just me pontificating all the time. And yeah, so maybe I can find some new favorites. See how this works?

In Blue Like Jazz (a book that will no doubt get the Deeper treatment at some point), Donald Miller wrote, “Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself. It’s as if they are showing you the way.” People have shown me the way quite often. I hope I can do that for you.

This introduction has gone on long enough, so Monday, I’ll be sharing the first actual Deeper review. Hint: Monday is my sister’s birthday, so it’ll be on something that meant a lot to us both as kids. Something magical and sparkly.

Hope you enjoy, and that we can stir up some great conversations in the process! I’ll leave with this question… what are the most meaningful books, music, or movies you’ve experienced? What stirs your soul, what do you keep returning to, and what would you want everyone to know about? Share in the comments!