“I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.”
– Jorge Luis Borges, “Poema de los Dones”
I’m embarrassed to admit that I finally finished the magnificent novel The Tiger’s Wife this past weekend, just shy of a year after starting it. Fortunately, I’ve read a lot of other great books in between, in my job as the Book Club Manager here at Patheos, and as other interests have beckoned. The Tiger’s Wife just seemed to hang on like, well, a tiger, until I finally found the space over Memorial Day weekend to devour its wonderful conclusion.
So many books! So little time, as they say. But the beauty of summer is that it opens up a big blue sky of possibility for reading without deadlines or guilt. And not just that heavy academic reading, but the kind of reading that captivates the soul and plumbs the heart. We thought it would be fun to check in with some of our favorite Patheos bloggers to see what they are reading this summer. When they put down their “work” reads for the year and head to the beach, or the mountains, what books bring them joy, and why? And how do their lists compare with yours?
As for me, I’ve downloaded the contemporary thriller Gone, Girl for airplane reading for my upcoming trip to Costa Rica, and am savoring Christine Valters Paintner’s Eyes of the Heart: Photography as a Christian Contemplative Practice before I go. I’ll have a whole new way of “taking” pictures of the monkeys and birds, the cloud forest, the ocean, and my family as a result of Valters Paintner’s invitation to see the world more prayerfully through the lens of a camera. And I couldn’t be more excited to dive into the advance reading copy of Nadia Bolz-Weber’s Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner and Saint. Her sermons regularly astound and inspire me; this, her first spiritual memoir, is certain to be equally intoxicating.
We’ll be sharing links to our bloggers’ summer reading posts all summer long here on Faith Forward. Here are a few to start, from bloggers Caryn Riswold and Chris Smith. Enjoy, and may your summer reading carry you away and feed your spirit and soul.