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Besides the Bible: 100 Books that Have, Should, or Will Create Christian Culture Paperback – November 17, 2010
All Books, All the Time
Read author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more at the Amazon Book Review. Read it now
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"...a remarkable resource for the spiritual formation...The books they commend are almost always thoughtful and important, and the way they write about them is compelling and enjoyable." --Hearts and Minds Bookstore, Best Books of 2010
"[Besides the Bible] offers a superb list of recommendations...If one were to read all 100 titles, he/she would be superbly equipped to understand not only Western culture, but also the church's role within it." --Englewood Review of Books
"The premise is rather simple, but its total message is priceless. Every Christian should have this resource." --Michael D. Bobo, Christian Literature Examiner
"...each person I have shown this book to has gotten excited about it. That's what this book is all about - taking [Christianity's] dying literary tradition and reviving the art of thought and conversation." --Relevant Magazine
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. A Facebook group created in his honor has over 30 members.
Jordan Green is from Portland, Oregon. He is the Editor-in-Chief of BurnsideWriters.com. Besides editing and writing, Jordan has also worked as a courier, a barista at a large coffee purveyor, and as a US Army Counterintelligence Agent, among other things. He currently lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with his wife Mindy and his daughter Lana Gwendolyn Rose.
John Pattison is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. His essays, articles, and reviews have appeared in the Burnside Writers Collective, where he serves as Deputy Editor, as well as in newspapers around the country. He is a regular contributor to Relevant Magazine and Relevant Online. He lives in Oregon's Willamette Valley with his wife, Kate, and his daughter, Molly. There is a pond next to their house with fish, ducks, geese, and a mythical beaver that no human has ever seen.
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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