25 More Books Every Christian Should Read

25 More Books Every Christian Should Read November 21, 2011

This post is part of the Patheos Book Club. Check out the Book Club for more posts on this book and for responses from the editors.

I’ve already submitted a post for this book club, in which I both admired and argued with Renovaré’s 25 Books Every Christian Should Read: A Guide to the Essential Spiritual Classics.  But then, this weekend, I found myself in a hotel bar, across a table from Lyle SmithGraybeal, who works for Renovaré and managed this book project, and Adam English, a professor of theology and philosophy at Campbell University.

The three of us got into a friendly argument over Lyle’s list, and others around the table joined in the conversation.  While Renovaré’s list leans toward the contemplative, it’ll come as no surprise that Adam and I wrote up a list that leans theological.  Below is a scan of the napkin on which we wrote our list of 25, followed linked list.

And here’s a link to all those books.

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  • Kenton

    What? No links from the napkin? Now THAT would be cool.

  • jcarlgregg

    Good call on including Pseudo Dionysius!

  • I think that’s the closest accociation I have seen between Moltmann and Calvin. 🙂

  • Pleased to see George Fox – Quaker wisdom is often overlooked.

  • Adam English

    Gosh that list seemed like a good idea at the time! Just remember it was produced late at night and on a napkin. I’m sure it suffers from an infinite number of obvious deficiencies.

  • Explain Pseudo-Dionesius please

  • And if you were looking for more blogging material you would spend the next 25 days sharing briefly why you believe each is important to read. 🙂

  • JR

    Too many patheos posts lately. Out of curiosity do you get paid to link to them or any other sites?

    • JR, I occasionally make something extra for participating in the Patheos Book Club. When I do, I write that these are “sponsored posts,” as required by the Federal Trade Commission.

      Other links to Patheos blogs are totally of my accord. But I am part of a blogging team here at Patheos, so I’m happy to direct others to them.

  • I will second Clint’s suggestion. Twenty-five short intros or explanations would be a fabulous addition to your blog over the next month or so.

  • I like the list that you present, Tony. My one umbrage would be referring to the Renovare list as contemplative. For instance, I don’t find THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV to be very contemplative. That Dimitri Karamazov (aka Mitya 0r Mitka or Mitenka or Mitri) and Grushenka, well, they really spice up Dostoevsky’s work! And we all know the 1958 film version starred Captain Kirk as Alyosha, the youngest brother. That, my friend, is action! 🙂

    • Good point, Lyle. But that book makes my list, “25 Books Every Human Being Should Read,” which I’m currently writing… 🙂

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  • David

    Interesting lists… although it is disappointing that a list of books that “every Christian should read” only has 2 female authors and no voices outside of the Western and white Christian tradition.

  • Eric

    Saint Josemaria Escriva
    Hippolytus of Rome
    Hugh of St. Victor

    More Recent and/or Living: John Howard Yoder, Stanley Hauerwas, William Cavanaugh, Catherine Pickstock, John Milbank, David Bentley Hart, Ellen Davis, Sylvia Keesmaat, Desmond Tutu.

    Just a few suggestions.

  • Richard

    Boy, its too bad the Emergent Church doesn’t care about orthodox and historic theology, way too many contemporary books on that list

    /thick sarcasm

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  • Greg Henneman

    I just discovered the Renovare list yesterday and am considering taking that on as my 2012 blogging project… but I like a lot of the books on your list too. How can I resist Howard Thurman and John Wesley and Soren Kierkegaard? But not sure I wanted to take on the entire summa theologica (3,000 pages?!?), yikes.