2016 Reading Challenge Update: May

http://www.challies.com/resources/2016-reading-challenge-update-may

2016 Reading Challenge

This year I have been participating in the 2016 Reading Challenge, a fun way to increase and diversify your reading through another year. I took the challenge and set this year’s goal at 104 books. However, because so much of my reading has to go toward reviewing books that are recently published and of interest to Christians (both for reviews published here and in WORLD magazine), I decided to pick from all over the list rather than working through it in order. What follows are the books I completed in May and, in parentheses, the reading challenge category they fulfill. They are listed in the order in which I completed them. Below that is the complete list of categories I need to cover.

  1. Living in the Light by John Piper (A book about money or finance). Money, sex, and power: three great gifts of God that can be used to such noble ends or abused to such ignoble ends. Together they form the subject for Piper’s latest book.
  2. Discipling by Mark Dever (A book about the church). This is another excellent little book in what is becoming an indispensable series. Though I have thought deeply about discipling and have committed a lot of time to it, the book still sparked new ideas and an increased belief in its centrality in God’s plan for his people
  3. J.C. Ryle by Iain Murray (A book by the Banner of Truth). Murray’s latest work is a biography of the great Anglican bishop J.C. Ryle and its release was timed to coincide with the two hundredth anniversary of its subjects birth. Considering Ryle’s legacy and influence there have been surprisingly few accounts of his life. I’m glad to see Murray remedy that.
  4. Hope Heals by Catherine & Jay Wolf (A book by a woman conference speaker). Though it deals with the difficult subject of suffering, this book was both encouraging and inspiring.
  5. Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton (A photo essay book). Based on the ultra-popular photo blog, this book is a lot of fun. Stanton has an eye for interesting people and for getting their stories. Not all of the photos are one hundred percent appropriate.
  6. Good Pictures, Bad Pictures by Kristen Jenson (A book for children). This book is designed to help parents protect their young children from pornography by both teaching their children what it is and by instructing how to respond when they see it. I thought it was quite well done.
  7. Core Christianity by Michael Horton (A book by a Presbyterian). This immediately takes its place as one of my favorite introductions to the Christian faith. It is one I will recommend often and distribute widely. 
  8. Sojourner Songs by Ben Palpate (A book of poetry). If you are looking for a book of poems to read in 2016, I don’t think you will do much better than this. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
  9. The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey (A book with magic). It starts out hauntingly beautiful and, to my mind, begins to lose some of that beauty by the end. Still, it is clear why this was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
  10. Red Platoon by Clinton Romesha (A book on the current New York Times list of bestsellers). This is the account of a terrible, costly battle fought in the mountains of Afghanistan. It is wriitten by one of two soldiers who received the Medal of Honor for his actions and he tells the story well. Note: It is a military memoir and hence contains a lot of profanity.

You can see my previous updates for January, February and March-April.

The Light Reader (13 Books)

  • ☒ A book about Christian living (Delighting in the Trinity)
  • ☐ A biography
  • ☐ A classic novel
  • ☐ A book someone tells you “changed my life”
  • ☐ A commentary on a book of the Bible
  • ☒ A book about theology (The Deep Things of God)
  • ☐ A book with the word “gospel” in the title or subtitle
  • ☐ A book your pastor recommends
  • ☐ A book more than 100 years old
  • ☒ A book for children (Good Picture, Bad Picture)
  • ☐ A mystery or detective novel
  • ☐ A book published in 2016
  • ☒ A book about a current issue (Black Flags)

The Avid Reader (26 Books)

  • ☐ A book written by a Puritan
  • ☐ A book recommended by a family member
  • ☒ A book by or about a missionary (William Carey)
  • ☒ A novel that won the Pulitzer Prize (All the Light We Cannot See)
  • ☐ A book written by an Anglican
  • ☐ A book with at least 400 pages
  • ☒ A book by C.S. Lewis or J.R.R. Tolkien (The Return of the King)
  • ☐ A book that has a fruit of the Spirit in the title
  • ☐ A book with a great cover
  • ☒ A book on the current New York Times list of bestsellers (Red Platoon)
  • ☒ A book about church history (A Great Blessing to Me)
  • ☒ A graphic novel (Essex County)
  • ☒ A book of poetry (Sojourner Songs)

The Committed Reader (52 Books)

  • ☒ A book from a theological viewpoint you disagree with (Black and White Bible, Black and Blue Wife)
  • ☒ A book written by an author with initials in their name (Conscience)
  • ☐ A book that won a ECPA Christian Book Award
  • ☐ A book about worldview
  • ☐ A play by William Shakespeare
  • ☐ A humorous book
  • ☐ A book based on a true story
  • ☐ A book written by Jane Austen
  • ☐ A book by or about Martin Luther
  • ☒ A book with 100 pages or less (God and Politics)
  • ☒ A book with a one-word title (Dreamland)
  • ☒ A book about money or finance (Living in the Light)
  • ☐ A novel set in a country that is not your own
  • ☒ A book about music (Unashamed)
  • ☒ A memoir (Skyfaring)
  • ☐ A book about joy or happiness
  • ☐ A book by a female author
  • ☒ A book whose title comes from a Bible verse (The Forgotten Fear)
  • ☐ A book you have started but never finished
  • ☒ A self-improvement book (Habits of Grace)
  • ☒ A book by David McCullough (Brave Companions)
  • ☐ A book you own but have never read
  • ☐ A book about abortion
  • ☐ A book targeted at the other gender
  • ☒ A book by a speaker at a conference you have attended (The Whole Christ)
  • ☒ A book written by someone of a different ethnicity than you (Black and Reformed)

The Obsessed Reader (104 Books)

  • ☒ A book published by The Banner of Truth (J.C. Ryle)
  • ☐ A book about the Reformation
  • ☒ A book written by a first-time author (Under Our Skin)
  • ☒ A biography of a world leader (Victoria: A Life)
  • ☐ A book used as a seminary textbook
  • ☐ A book about food
  • ☒ A book about productivity (Your Days Are Numbered)
  • ☒ A book about or relationships or friendship (The Lovers)
  • ☐ A book about parenting
  • ☐ A book about philosophy
  • ☐ A book about art
  • ☒ A book with magic (The Snow Child)
  • ☒ A book about prayer (Moving Mountains)
  • ☒ A book about marriage (Tying the Knot)
  • ☒ A book about a hobby (Floodpath)
  • ☐ A book of comics
  • ☐ A book about the Second World War
  • ☐ A book about sports
  • ☐ A book by or about a pastor’s wife
  • ☒ A book about suffering (When Breath Becomes Air)
  • ☒ A book by your favorite author (What Is the Trinity?)
  • ☐ A book you have read before
  • ☒ A book about homosexuality (Messy Grace)
  • ☒ A Christian novel (Jump)
  • ☒ A book about psychology (Imagine Heaven)
  • ☐ A book about the natural world
  • ☐ A book by or about Charles Dickens
  • ☐ A novel longer than 400 pages
  • ☒ A historical book (The ISIS Apocalypse)
  • ☒ A book about the Bible (A Peculiar Glory)
  • ☒ A book about a country or city (One Child)
  • ☐ A book about astronomy
  • ☐ A book with an ugly cover
  • ☐ A book by or about a martyr
  • ☒ A book by a woman conference speaker (Hope Heals)
  • ☐ A book by or about the church fathers
  • ☐ A book about language
  • ☐ A book by or about a Russian
  • ☒ A book about leadership (Zeal Without Burnout)
  • ☐ A book about public speaking
  • ☐ A book by Francis Schaeffer
  • ☒ A book by a Presbyterian (Core Christianity)
  • ☒ A book about science (The Sleep Revolution)
  • ☐ A book about revival
  • ☐ A book about writing
  • ☐ A book about evangelism
  • ☐ A book about ancient history
  • ☐ A book about preaching
  • ☒ A book about the church (Discipling)
  • ☐ A book about adoption
  • ☒ A photo essay book (Humans of New York)
  • ☐ A book written in the twentieth century

Bonus (109 Books)

  • ☐ A book from a library
  • ☒ A book about business (Disrupted)
  • ☐ A book by an author less than 30
  • ☐ A book published by a UK-based publisher
  • ☐ A book you borrow

Books Without a Category

  • Cockpit Confidential by Patrick Smith

 

 

Add Comment