Unshelved ~ What I Read In March 2018

A fourth of the year is already past us and I’m already about 3 books behind my annual goal. Hopefully, April can be a ‘catch-up’ month in which I can gain some ground that I’ve lost. Truthfully, I had lots of overnight plane and bus trips which translates into lots of reading time. Unfortunately, those environments are not always conducive to reading heavier materials because of the need to take notes. So much of the reading that I did do this month were mostly books that I could sit back and enjoy. So what captured my attention this month? Well, here is a look at the list.

Words of Truth:
I was certain to intersperse a few heavier reads into my time, because of its importance on compelling me to grow and challenging me in areas I need to be challenged in. Willing to Believe by R.C. Sproul and Long Before Luther by Nathan Busenitz are theological reads dealing with doctrines that are often misinterpreted, although each does so uniquely with Sprout writing more from a systematic theology perspective and Busenitz from a historical theology perspective. While Vern Poythress’ Theophany was a narrative of biblical theology examining the appearances of God throughout the Old and New Testaments. That leaves this last book a bit of an outlier because it has nothing to do with Scripture. American Sphinx examines the thinking and motivation of Thomas Jefferson as he helped to guide the United States in its founding years. Perhaps, you could say this was a book of Jeffersonian theology then; regardless, it’s a fascinating perspective on the man who had so much influence on the setup of our country which obviously affects us today.

Words of Literature:
While fictitious in nature, these literary works of art each offer some truth in their perspectives on humanity. Interestingly, each book takes place in another culture and country apart from the United States, and so each comes with its own cultural leanings that can be enjoyed and learned from. The Kite Runner, a well-known book from Khaled Hosseini begins in Afghanistan, and while eventually, the narrative enters into the United States, it only does so while trying to maintain the Afghan customs and culture. Coming from the Southern Hemisphere and settling in Buenos Aires is El Cantor de Tango, a book about one man’s journey to Buenos Aires that commences as the result of writing his university thesis. Perhaps the closest to United States culture is Long Way Down by Nick Hornby that brings together perspectives of four unique individuals whose only thing in common is their desire to commit suicide at the same place at the same time. Hornby is a gifted author and I often find myself challenged by his reads, but it’s a shame that such grand writing is often ruined by his prolific use of foul language, and this particular book is the worst language that I have ever read.

Words of Fiction:
Finally, I must always throw in some light reading that requires little thinking at the end of a heavy day. For me, that would be books of mystery. Right now my mystery reading is making its way through about five different authors, two of which were represented this month. Clive Cussler and his NUMA series with the book Blue Gold and Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon series through his book The Messenger.

As we complete the first part of this new year, how are you reading goals coming along? What can you do in April to help you stay on track or get back on track? Whatever you do, enjoy your reading time this month.

To view or purchase any of the books mentioned, click the following links. Also if I did a review of the book, you can click the links to see that review.

  1. Long Before Luther by Nathan Busenitz (Book Review)
  2. Theophany by Vern Poythress (Book Review)
  3. Willing to Believe by R.C. Sproul (Book review forthcoming)
  4. American Sphinx by Joseph Ellis
  5. El Cantor de Tango by Tomas Martinez Eloy (Spanish only)
  6. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  7. Long Way Down by Nick Hornby
  8. Blue Gold by Clive Cussler
  9. The Messenger by Daniel Silva