Books of 2012

This year has seen my hit a new low for reading and reviewing books (previous low was 20 in 2008 and down from a high of 35 last year). I think a lot of energy has gone into learning a language instead of into books and blogging, plus I’ve found this stage of parenting more tiring than ever. Anyway here is my shorter list of the books I have read in 2012 however I would add that almost all of these books have been excellent. So I’ve included a short summary from each review as a reminder.

  1. All Hell Let Loose by Max Hastings: “Max Hasting’s monumental volume on the second world war, All Hell Let Loose, is 748 pages long so it’s like reading three books! This is a quite phenomenal book and I’m sure, no matter what I read, it will rank near the top of my reading list come December 2012.”
  2. A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus by Bruce Fisk: “Not only should it be on every theology student’s suggested reading list but if that student was a Christian then this is a must read because of the superb way it handles the tension between faith and the academy. However limiting it to theology students would be a mistake, for any reader interested in reading an introduction to the study of Jesus then this would be an excellent place to start.”
  3. Fathering Leaders, Motivating Mission by David Devenish: “A helpful book both to understand where a movement such as Newfrontiers is coming from and a book with many, many wise insights into mature, pioneering, faith filled mission and ministry through the church for the glory of Christ.”
  4. The Open Church by Jurgen Moltmann: “This is a vibrant, compelling, dynamite book. Sub titled ‘Invitation to a messianic life-style’ it seems like a prophetic call for what we know as the missional church from one of the twentieth centuries heavyweight theologians.”
  5. Thy Kingdom Come by Christopher Catherwood: “Despite not being a bad book, the unevenness and slight eccentricity of the book leaves me at a loss as to know who I might recommend this book to, or indeed even why. As they used to say of my essays at school, ‘could have been much better.’”
  6. If God Then What? by Andrew Wilson: “This is a lesson in communication that church leaders and preachers would do well to learn and lastly anyone who has friends who don’t believe and are willing to chat, should read it and learn from it. So all in all, highly recommended.”
  7. The Meeting of the Waters by Fritz Kling: “I found this book helpful, hopeful and encouraging and for those thinking and engaging in cross-cultural mission, this is a book worth reading.”
  8. Multiplying Missional Leaders by Mike Breen: “In places it was a bit theologically lite (or at least making much bolder statements than the evidence supports) but I found it time and time again a stimulating and provocative read. One that in many places I found convicting and practical. It is a book that helped me think, ‘we could do that.’”
  9. Tyndale by David Teems: “I haven’t read any other biographies of Tyndale so it’s hard to place this one, but it has made me want to read another not because this one is bad but because it has created an interest in its subject and that’s what good biographies should do”
  10. A Meal with Jesus by Tim Chester: “A meal with Jesus is an excellent book that will open your eyes to building community, to fellowship, friendship, salvation and grace. It should help rescue you from a trap of busyness that leads to a shallow form of hospitality and introduces you to a more biblical practice of hospitality, one that is deeper, richer and in the presence of Christ. Recommended.”
  11. The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosario Butterfield: “You may not agree with everything but there are insights on every page. This is an incredibly helpful book that for anyone thinking through, in particular human sexuality and the gospel, would be well advised to have on their shelves.”

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