Monday, January 23, 2012

Top books of 2011

The Enemy Within by Kris Lundgaard - Powerfull re-working of Owen's classic "Mortification of Sin in the Beliver." Blogged about the book here.

Wendell Berry: I went on a WB reading kick this year and consumed a bunch of his works. Introduced to him by a friend who said "If you replace every use of the word 'community' in Berry's books with the word 'church,' it would revolutionize the way we do church." For an introduction to his fiction, try Fidelity (a collection of short stories). For non-fiction, try What are People For?  Other favorites were Hannah CoulterJayber Crow, and Citizenship Papers.

Colonel Roosevelt - Third book in a trilogy of an amazing story about an amazing man. If you want to be inspired to live life at its fullest in 2012, read all three volumes in this series. Previously blogged about the first in the series here.

Unbroken - Many have raved about this story of an Olympic runner turned Japanese POW in WWII. His perseverance, resilience, and ultimately his ability to forgive is super human. The author's story ads an interesting layer, as she struggles with debilitating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Vertigo, hardly unable to even leave her bedroom at times.

How Should We Then Live? - by Francis Schaeffer. I've been a big fan of Schaeffer since being introduced to him in College. One of my seminary professors said, "Sell whatever you have, and go out today and buy his complete works." Couldn't agree more! I try to read a little of him every year. This version includes pictures of much of the art Schaeffer analyzes in the book.

A Million Ways to Die by Rick James - Crusade staff member writes about the core of living as a Christian: dying. Simple concept, yet frustratingly difficult to live out. James is witty and quick to highlight his own failures, yet inspires with some successes as well.

The Big Rock Candy Mountain by Wallace Stegner -  Introduced to Stegner through Berry's works (Berry was a "Stegner Fellow" at Stanford). Some of the finest modern literature I've read. Similar to Steinbeck in style and regional themes. Stegner's Angle of Repose was a worthy read as well.

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