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Besides the Bible: 100 Books that Have, Should, or Will Create Christian Culture Paperback – December 17, 2010
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"Readers will want to return to Besides the Bible again and again. Some readers will even want to begin their own lists." (Forrest Rice, Congregational Libraries Today, Second Issue, 2013)
About the Author
Dan Gibson is a writer, editor, and researcher living in Tucson, Arizona. He is married, has two children, and manages an amateur soccer club, Sparklemotion.
Jordan Green is from Portland, Oregon. He is the Editor-in-Chief of BurnsideWriters.com. He has also worked as a courier, barista, and as a US Army Conterintelligence Agent. He currently lives in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and daughter.
John Pattison is an author, community advocate, grant writer and nonprofit consultant who leads The Resourceful Community, a blog that connects community leaders to the resources of community flourishing. He is the coauthor of Slow Church and Besides the Bible: 100 Books that Have, Should, or Will Create Christian Culture. Formerly the managing editor of CONSPIRE Magazine and deputy editor of the Burnside Writers Collective, Pattison's essays, articles and reviews have appeared in Relevant, Books & Culture and the Englewood Review of Books. He is also a voting member of the National Book Critics Circle. He lives with his wife Kate and their two daughters in Oregon's Mid-Willamette Valley.
Top customer reviews
Besides the Bible is well worth the mere ten dollars that Amazon is charging. Its top 100 books span a wide variety of genres. Notable works reviewed include John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, The Norton Anthology of Poetry, and No Compromise: The Life Story of Keith Green by Melody Green. Every Christian should read all of these works, but in the hectic 21st century world few actually have the time. In lieu of undertaking this herculean task, the next best thing is read a single volume that offers succinct reviews by well respected authors.
I've already bought it for several friends - a great gift for books lovers!
So, as another evangelical who's branched out in lots of ways, but more as a mainline Protestant and early Christianity guy, here's my contribution: First, "Mere Christianity" belongs in there. It gets mentioned in at least three essays and they take space to explain why they didn't include it. "The Year of Living Biblically" has created Christian culture more than "Mere Christianity"? Please! I can see how "Screwtape" gets off the list, but this is a major mistake.
Second, if you put Donald Miller, Rob Bell, Brian McLaren and all that crowd in there, how do you have nothing from Henri Nouwen, Barbara Brown Taylor, Will Willimon, or Frederick Buechner? These have been read by many more folks than the Emergent folks, but they're more popular with mainline Protestant readers. They should have thrown at least one bone.
"The Life of St. Anthony" belongs in there, and probably "On the Incarnation," too. Hard to say they have been less influential than a lot of books that made the list. These are accessible and engaging classics, too. "The Shack" is so new that it's hard to know its influence. They were right to include some poorly written books that have shaped common thinking in incalculable ways, namely, "Left Behind," and "This Present Darkness."
The essays are lively, interesting, personal, and generally open the books up without praising them uncritically.
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