Summer Reading for the Socially Engaged Christian – 2018

May 24, 2018 — Leave a comment

 

Summer Reading 2018

Summer is almost here, a season when many people find a little more time than usual for reading!

Whether you’ll get some vacation time this summer, or whether your schedule simply slows down a bit, we hope that you will find some extra time for reading.

 

Here are 30 new-ish books that would make for superb summer reading!

 

[ Christian Discipleship ]  [ Gen. Nonfiction ]   [ Fiction ]
[ Theology ]   [ Biography / Memoir ]  [ YA / Graphic Novel ]
[ Poetry ]

General NonFiction:

 

The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters 

Priya Parker

( Riverhead )

 

A bold new approach to how we gather that will transform the ways we spend our time together–at work, at home, in our communities, and beyond.

In The Art of Gathering, Priya Parker argues that the gatherings in our lives are lackluster and unproductive–which they don’t have to be. We rely too much on routine and the conventions of gatherings when we should focus on distinctiveness and the people involved. At a time when coming together is more important than ever, Parker sets forth a human-centered approach to gathering that will help everyone create meaningful, memorable experiences, large and small, for work and for play.

 

 

Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone 

Brene Brown

( Random House )

In Braving the Wilderness, Brown redefines what it means to truly belong in an age of increased polarization. With her trademark mix of research, storytelling, and honesty, Brown will again change the cultural conversation while mapping a clear path to true belonging.

Brown argues that we’re experiencing a spiritual crisis of disconnection, and introduces four practices of true belonging that challenge everything we believe about ourselves and each other. She writes, “True belonging requires us to believe in and belong to ourselves so fully that we can find sacredness both in being a part of something and in standing alone when necessary. But in a culture that’s rife with perfectionism and pleasing, and with the erosion of civility, it’s easy to stay quiet, hide in our ideological bunkers, or fit in rather than show up as our true selves and brave the wilderness of uncertainty and criticism. But true belonging is not something we negotiate or accomplish with others; it’s a daily practice that demands integrity and authenticity. It’s a personal commitment that we carry in our hearts.” Brown offers us the clarity and courage we need to find our way back to ourselves and to each other.

 

The World-Ending Fire: The Essential Wendell Berry 

Wendell Berry
(Paul Kingsnorth, Ed.)

( Counterpoint )

In a time when our relationship to the natural world is ruled by the violence and greed of unbridled consumerism, Wendell Berry speaks out in these prescient essays, drawn from his fifty-year campaign on behalf of American lands and communities

The writings gathered in The World-Ending Fire are the unique product of a life spent farming the fields of rural Kentucky with mules and horses, and of the rich, intimate knowledge of the land cultivated by this work. These are essays written in defiance of the false call to progress and in defense of local landscapes, essays that celebrate our cultural heritage, our history, and our home.

With grace and conviction, Wendell Berry shows that we simply cannot afford to succumb to the mass-produced madness that drives our global economy―the natural world will not survive it.

Yet he also shares with us a vision of consolation and of hope. We may be locked in an uneven struggle, but we can and must begin to treat our land, our neighbors, and ourselves with respect and care. As Berry urges, we must abandon arrogance and stand in awe.

 

 

 

Feel Free: Essays 

Zadie Smith

( Penguin Press )

Gathering in one place for the first time previously unpublished work, as well as already classic essays, such as, “Joy,” and, “Find Your Beach,” Feel Free offers a survey of important recent events in culture and politics, as well as Smith’s own life. Equally at home in the world of good books and bad politics, Brooklyn-born rappers and the work of Swiss novelists, she is by turns wry, heartfelt, indignant, and incisive–and never any less than perfect company. This is literary journalism at its zenith.

 

On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity, and Getting Old

Parker Palmer

( B-K Publishers )

From beloved and bestselling author Parker J. Palmer (Let Your Life Speak, The Courage to Teach, Healing the Heart of Democracy), comes a beautiful book of reflections on what we can learn as we move closer to “the brink of everything.”

Drawing on eight decades of life — and his career as a writer, teacher, and activist — Palmer explores the questions age raises and the promises it holds. “Old,” he writes, “is just another word for nothing left to lose, a time to dive deep into life, not withdraw to the shallows.”

 

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