I just realized that I have 702 items on my Amazon wish list. With the exception of a few things here and there, the vast majority of those are books. Books, books and more books. It’s ridiculous really. But I just can’t seem to help adding books that capture my attention and interest (and I’m interested in most anything).
Along with that dilemma (for I’ll never be able to purchase and read all those books, but it won’t be for not trying!) is another issue, and that is the cheap Amazon Kindle Books that I come across from time to time. Like the book I just finished reading—Feed My Sheep—was just 99 cents a week or so ago. (Now it is retailing for $8.99) I feel guilty for purchasing books and not reading them, so I am trying to read through my Kindle List as well. For example, right now I am reading “The Napoleon of Notting Hill“, which is currently only 95 cents.
All of that said, I would like to have a summer reading list, so I’m going to torture my readers and use this forum to develop it. If you are not a “reader”, maybe you will be challenged to try one of the titles. If you are a reader, you should make a summer reading list of your own as well.
Below are my 8 wishful picks for my summer reading. 8 may not seem like many, but some of these books are larger volumes.
Eiger Dreams by Jon Krakauer: I’ve read all of Jon Krakauer’s books except this one. I really like how he writes.
“No matter what the actual temperature may be, several pages into Eiger Dreams you will begin to shiver. Halfway through you will acquire a new appreciation for your fingers, toes, and the fact that you still have a nose. And by the end of this collection, you’ll define some commonly used phrases in an entirely different way. The understated “catch some air” and the whimsical “log some flight time” are climbers’ euphemisms for falling, while “crater” refers to what happens when you log some flight time all the way to the ground. “Summiting,” the term for reaching the top of a mountain, seems almost colorless in comparison.”
Phantastes by George MacDonald: I’ve never read MacDonald, but my “Uncle” C.S. Lewis often wrote about his writings and their impact on him.
“In October 1857, George MacDonald wrote what he described as a kind of fairy tale, in the hope that it will pay me better than the more evidently serious work. This was Phantastes one of MacDonald’s most important works; a work which so overwhelmed C. S. Lewis that a few hours after he began reading it he knew he had crossed a great frontier.”
Not a Fan: Becoming a Completely Committed Follower of Jesus by Kyle Idleman: I’m not familiar with the author, but the book received good reviews and I sampled a bit of it while I was in Atlanta last month.
“In Not a Fan Idleman uses biblical examples to show how the people who met Jesus also had to decide if they were fans or followers, and what it meant for them to then become followers.”
Holiness by Grace by Bryan Chapell: Another book where I am unfamiliar with the author. However, another book with great reviews plus I can never learn too much about grace.
“Although his purpose is “to explain the role of grace in sanctification,” Chapell, president of Covenant Theological Seminary, not only explains fundamental theological concepts, but gives them passion and life through colorful, often poignant illustrations. Chapell argues very carefully that God’s grace is the necessary foundation and source for all spiritual growth in the Christian life. He thoughtfully explores the deeply rooted human tendency to turn away from grace, seeking favor and blessing through our own efforts.”
When I Was a Child I Read Books by Marilynne Robinson: I love the way this author writes. Her novels are very important to me. I am very much looking forward to reading this book about her childhood in Idaho.
“And in “When I Was a Child,” one of her most personal essays to date, an account of her childhood in Idaho becomes an exploration of individualism and the myth of the American West. Clear-eyed and forceful as ever, Robinson demonstrates once again why she is regarded as one of our essential writers.”
The Man Called Cash by Steve Turner: I love to read biographies, and what better one to read than this tome about one of my favorite artists?
“Musical biographer Turner (Conversations with Clapton, etc.) leans heavily on interviews with Cash fans such as Larry Gatlin and Kris Kristofferson (who pens the foreword) and on quotations from songs Cash wrote, sang or both. The result is an affecting mosaic of oral history, poetry and memoir—concerning Cash himself, but also the era in which his music took root and thrived.”
“God is Love: A Biblical and Systematic Theology” by Gerald Bray: I have yet to read a systematic theology book, even though I have Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology on my shelf. But I find myself drawn to the idea of the combination of a Biblical and systematic theology, as presented here by Gerald Bray.
“This volume is unique from others in that Bray traces the common theme of God’s love through the Bible categorically—from God’s love for himself and his creation to the cross as the ultimate expression of God’s love, among other categories. The centrality of God’s love in Bray’s theology reflects a deep conviction that the Bible shows us God for who he really is. This volume will be of interest to Christians seeking to grow in their faith.”
“The Idiot” by Fyodor Dostoyevsky“: I so enjoyed Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov, that I’ve had my mind on reading this for awhile. This, along with Phantastes, will be my classic treats for the summer.
“Scandal escalates to murder as Dostoevsky traces the surprising effect of this “positively beautiful man” on the people around him, leading to a final scene that is one of the most powerful in all of world literature.”