It’s hard for me to believe it, but we’re almost at the end of 2021. At one time, I thought I would write these reading roundups more regularly. Alas, I had other priorities. Here’s a list of favorites, with occasional annotations.

  • Eye of the Needle by Ken Follet
  • Advent by Fleming Rutledge
  • On the Road with Saint Augustine by James K.A. Smith
  • Reckless graphic novels by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips — Some of the page-turning-est crime fiction I’ve ever read, in comic book form!
  • C.S. Lewis’s Space Trilogy — I punted on these for years, but picked them up at the recommendation of a friend. I’d say it’s been foundational for me in recovering an “enchanted” sense of faith and life. Additionally, the sociological vision and machinations of the third book’s evilly banal organization, “N.I.C.E.”, are eerily prescient.
  • Why Liberalism Failed by Patrick Deneen
  • Paul and the Power of Grace by John Barclay
  • Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen: Who Killed Jimmy Olsen by Matt Fraction — Probably the most you’ll ever laugh reading a Superman comic.
  • The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
  • Wonder Woman: Dead Earth by Daniel Warren Johnson
  • Prayer in the Night by Tish Harrison Warren
  • Hunting Magic Eels by Richard Beck — Another book that’s heavily influenced my appreciation for the mysterious/“enchanted” aspects of faith.
  • Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
  • Uprooted by Gracy Olmstead
  • Band of Brothers by Stephen Ambrose
  • The Symposium by Plato — This was the first book our newly founded “great books” club read together. A bunch of philospher’s drunken reflections on Eros, what’s not to love?
  • The Decadent Society by Ross Douthat
  • Reliquary by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
  • Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, translated by Stephen Mitchell — The second entry for our book club.
  • Hounded by Kevin Hearne — This was a re-read. Hearne’s Iron Druid Chronicles are great fun.
  • Lectio Divina — Enzo Bianchi
  • Beowulf translated by J.R.R. Tolkien — I had our book club read Maria Dahvana Headley’s translation of Beowulf for our third entry. Since I had devoured her translation late last year after receiving it for Christmas, I chose to read Tolkien’s translation on my own, and put it in conversation with Headley’s.
  • Acedia and its Discontents by R.J. Snell
  • Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman
  • Building the Benedict Option by Leah Libresco Sargeant
  • The World Ending Fire: The Essential Wendell Berry — A collection of Berry’s essays curated by Paul Kingsnorth.
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley — Our book club’s fourth entry. More of a page-turner than I expected.
  • Piranesi by Susannah Clarke — Maybe my favorite book on this list? Captivating, entrancing, and original.
  • Reading the Times by Jeffrey Bilbro — Made me want to never read the news again. Alas, I’m only human. That said, his thoughts on Kairos vs Chronos time got my wheels spinning. I hope to write something about that as it pertains to technology.
  • Margin by Richard Swenson
  • Magic: A History by Chris Gosden