Review of 2017: books

21 December 2017

BOOKS featured to mark the quincentenary of the start of the Reformation included: All Things Made New by Diarmaid MacCulloch; Martin Luther: Rebel in an age of upheaval by Heinz Schilling; Protestants by Alec Ryrie; Martin Luther: Catholic dissident by Peter Stanford; Reformations by Carlos M. N. Eire; Reformation Divided by Eamon Duffy; Martin Luther: Renegade and prophet by Lyndal Roper; and Heretics and Believers by Peter Marshall.

Lent titles reviewed in the Church Times included the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent Book 2017 Dethroning Mammon (written by the Archbishop himself); Hanging by a Thread by Sam Wells; Glimpses of Glory by the late David Bryant; Let Me Go There by Paula Gooder; and The Things He Did by Stephen Cottrell.

Apologetics and the God debate were covered in Making Sense of God by Timothy Keller; Why I Left, Why I Stayed by Tony Campolo and Bart Campolo; God Created Humanism by Theo Hobson; Black Sheep and Prodigals by Dave Tomlinson; and Unbelievable by Justin Brierly.

Titles by theologians included God Curious by Stephen Cherry; The Day the Revolution Began by Tom Wright; Doubt, Faith and Certainty by Anthony C. Thiselton; Love is his Meaning by Keith Ward; and God, Neighbour, Empire by Walter Brueggemann.

Popular titles by Rowan Williams which topped the bestseller list included God With Us and Holy Living.

Books on the Bible included Who Needs the Old Testament? by Katherine Dell; Biblical Truths by Dale B. Martin; The Hebrew Bible, edited by John Barton; Reading Jesus’ Bible by John Goldingay; Paul and the Gift by John M. G. Barclay; and Paul on Baptism by Nicholas Taylor.

Among titles on Anglicanism were The Future Shapes of Anglicanism by Martyn Percy; Growth and Decline in the Anglican Communion: 1980 to the present, edited by David Goodhew; and the following volumes in the series The Oxford History of Anglicanism: Volume I: Reformation and Identity, c.1520-1662, edited by Anthony Milton Volume III: Partisan Anglicanism and its global expansion, 1829-c.1914, edited by Rowan Strong; and Volume IV, Global Western Anglicanism, c.1910-present, edited by Jeremy Morris.


Titles on spirituality included Spiritual Growth in a Time of Change by Tony Horsfall; Called by God by Derek Tidball; Experiencing Christ’s Love by John Twisleton; Spirituality in Photography by Philip J. Richter; Journey to the Centre of the Soul by Andrew Mayes; The Heart of Centering Prayer by Cynthia Bourgeault; and God-soaked Life by Chris Webb.

Among titles exploring Christian-Muslim relations were The Enemy Within by Sayeeda Warsi; Encountering Islam by Richard Sudworth; Jihad and Death by Olivier Ray; Letters to a Young Muslim by Omar Saif Ghobash; and Jihadism Transformed, edited by Simon Staffell and Akil Awan.

The relationship of science and religion was further explored in Let There Be Science by David Hutchings and Tom McLeish; Evolution and the Fall, edited by William T. Cavanaugh and James K. A. Smith; and The Great Mystery by Alister McGrath.

The topics of disability and mental health were covered in the award-winning author John Swinton’s Becoming Friends of Time; Thinking of You by Joanna Collicutt; and I Thought There Would be Cake by Katharine Welby-Roberts.

Books on mindfulness included Being Mindful, Being Christian by Roger Bretherton, Joanna Collicutt, and Jennifer Brickman; and The Virgin Eye by Robin Daniels (edited by Katherine Daniels).

Christian buildings were celebrated in The Sagrada Familia by Gijs van Hensbergen; The History of England’s Cathedrals by Nicholas Orme; and Unlocking the Church by William Whyte.

Books reflecting on the political and financial situation included The Market as God by Harvey Cox; Faithonomics by Torkel Brekke; The Production of Money by Ann Pettifor; The Road to Somewhere by David Goodhart; and The Mighty and the Almighty by Nick Spencer. Poverty was addressed in The Church of the Poor by Clemens Sedmak; Global Poverty by Justin Thacker; and a Church for the Poor by Martin Charlesworth and Natalie Williams.

Ethics was discussed in The Moral Heart of Public Service by Claire Foster-Gilbert; Moral Passion and Christian Ethics by Robin Gill; Human Trafficking, the Bible and the Church by Marion L. S. Carson; and The Image of God: Personhood and the embryo by Calum MacKellar.

Priesthood, ministry, and the parish system were explored in the following titles: The Parish Handbook by Bob Mayo; Parish: An Anglican theology of place by Andrew Rumsey; The Pattern of our Calling by David Hoyle; For God’s Sake, edited by Jessica Martin and Sarah Coakley; and The DNA of Pioneer Ministry by Andy Milne with Michael Moynagh. Mission was tackled in Stepping into Grace by Paul Bradbury; God’s Belongers by David Walker; and Reproducing Churches by George Lings.

Liturgy and worship were covered in The New Passover by Nigel Scotland; Material Eucharist by David Grummett; and Doorways to the Sacred, edited by Phil Potter and Ian Mobsby.

On preaching were Wrestling with the Word, edited by Kate Bruce and Jamie Harrison; and Waiting on the Word by Lorraine Cavanagh;

Novels reviewed included Towards Mellbreak by Marie-Elsa Bragg; Realms of Glory by Catherine Fox; The Shadow Doctor by Adrian Plass; The Soldier, the Gaoler, the Spy, and the Lover by Simon Parke; Sidney James and the Persistence of Love by James Runcie; and Whatever Happened to Billy Shears by Steve Goddard.

There were biographies of Edward Carpenter, Dom Denys Prideaux, William Brownlow, Monica Wilson, Archbishop Alojzije Stepinac, and Arthur Mee.

Among other books reviewed were The Divine Dance by Richard Rohr; The Cross by Robin M. Jensen; The Luminous Web by Barbara Brown Taylor; Fierce Imaginings by Rachel Mann; Mariner: A voyage with Samuel Taylor Coleridge by Malcolm Guite; The Spirituality of Jane Austen by Paula Hollingsworth; This is My Body by Lavinia Byrne; Solitude by Terry Waite; Divine Sparks by Donna Lazenby; and Ruin and Restoration by David Martin.

Forthcoming Events

5-6 May 2018
Church Times Festival of Poetry
With Sarum College, Salisbury.
Speakers include: Rachel Mann, Mark Oakley and Michael Symmons Roberts, among others.
Find out more and book tickets

Job of the Week

Organists and Layworkers


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