All the Pretty Horses – Cormac McCarthy (1992) // Well deserving of the National Book Award it won. Not as dark as some of his other books (e.g. No Country for Old Men), but still powerful.
Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer – Maureen Ogle (2007) // Unlike best selling American beers, this wasn’t as light as I anticipated. A detailed, engaging history of the American business of beer.
The Book of the Dun Cow – Walter Wangerin (2003) // Fantastic. Rich in symbolism, but not a strict allegory. Think Animal Farm meets Chaucer meets Lord of the Rings. Possibly my favorite of the year.
Christians are Hate-filled Hypocrites, and Other Lies You’ve Been Told – Bradley R.E. Wright (2010) // Helpful in debunking negative statistics bandied about carelessly by Christians and non Christians alike. Repetitive, but careful and witty.
The Dragon’s Tooth – N.D. Wilson (2011) // I wish this young adult title got half as much press as The Hunger Games. An intelligent page turner that’s loads of fun.
Hire on a Whim: Four Qualities that Make for Great Employees – Garrett Miller (2010) // Very helpful book by a good friend. We implemented his framework in the library to hire two great employees this summer.
The Hole in Our Holiness: Filling the Gap Between Gospel Passion and the Pursuit of Godliness – Kevin DeYoung (2012) // In the running for best book of the year. Short, but so good. Full review here.
Jesus Loves the Little Children: Why We Baptize Children – Daniel Hyde (2012) // Succinct, clear introduction to infant baptism. Like his other books, it’s biblically and confessionally saturated, patient, and pastoral.
Leaves of Grass – Walt Whitman (1855) // I had high expectations, but wasn’t as engrossed as I was hoping. Some brilliant moments, but some dull ones, too.
The Masculine Mandate: God’s Calling to Men – Richard Phillips (2009) // Enjoyable and challenging. Refreshing to read a non-Wilson book for men that was as good as Wilson, but different. Highly recommended.
A Shot of Faith (To the Head): Be a Confident Believer in an Age of Cranky Atheists) – Mitch Stokes (2012) // Full review here. Good and meaty. I really enjoyed this, especially for its wit, depth, and accessibility. Part two on science was especially outstanding.
Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters – N.T. Wright (2011) // Well written and accessible. I’m grateful for a lifetime of teaching that made much of this book more a reminder than profoundly new.
What Did You Expect? Redeeming the Realities of Marriage – Paul David Tripp (2010) // Insightful and earnest, though could have been 100 pages shorter. Tripp’s focus on grace, forgiveness, and selfishness was excellent.