Those that follow BookNotes know that every year we sell books at the biggest thing we do all year, the big conference organized for college students in Pittsburgh, Jubilee. Go back to last year’s blog posts here, or here, and you’ll see our passionate ruminations on why this event is so exciting (and exhausting.)
Thank goodness for organizations like the CCO who help college students relate faith and vocation, who equip a new generation of Christian folk who serve God in the work-a-day world, being “salt & light” in the midst of careers and callings. Would that ordinary churches would more esteem their lawyers and science teachers and physical therapists and film-makers, their artists and business leaders, their engineers and elected officials. That this culture-making, Kingdom-announcing, whole-life vision of relevant faith is so appreciated by young believers is inspiring to us. Pray for us as we work hard to do this thing right. Pray for CCO and their Jubilee, too; believe it or not, some thing they are amiss in holding up the Lordship of Jesus over every dimension of life. Some mainline folk think it sounds a bit too radical, bringing the authority of Scriptures to bear on public life like that and some fundamentalists think we are diluting the call to evangelism and spiritual integrity. As most BookNotes readers will surely agree, it is tricky to be faithful (in the words of Indian missiologist Leslie Newbegin) to proclaims “the gospel in a pluralistic society” but it has always been so. The missional movement is reminding us that in a post-Constantine world, we must ponder anew what Augustine meant (and what Willimon and Hauerwas meant) by call to be “resident aliens.” It sure makes bookselling fun, that’s for sure.
And so, even as we have dozens of heavy boxes scattered all over our shop, and our hard-working staff are lugging them to and fro, new stuff keeps coming. We’re pretty crazy here, but so glad for customers who visit on line or stop by. Even while Beth and I are out of town, our staff soldier on, keeping things running smoothly. It’s amazing when we box up for these off-site events, to be reminded of just how many unusual and hard-to-find books we’ve got–from a Christian theology of math to new resources on race relations; from brand new titles on faith and science to old favorites in art, poetry, books about writing…. We’re excited!
We will tell you next week more about them, I hope, but know that we got the new, controversial, and very interesting Brian McLaren book, A New Kind of Christianity: Ten Questions That Are Transforming the Faith (HarperOne; $24.99). Some respected reviewers are being terribly injudicious in their rhetoric (inappropriately saying McLaren “hates God”) while others seem unwilling to be even somewhat critical of Brian’s latest articulation of his journey. I think it is an important and valuable book, have read most of it twice in an earlier review copy, and even if it is not all that some of us had hoped for, there is much good insight. We are eager for serious and thoughtful conversation about it, and will have to discuss it further, later.
We’ve gotten the new, final volume in the Eugene Peterson “spiritual theology” series, Practicing Resurrection: A Conversation on Growing Up In Christ (Eerdmans; $24.00.) You may know that we think this series to be some of the best religious publishing of our bookselling careers, and we very highly commend them. I’m sure this one will be no less significant and gracious and wise. We’ll celebrate it more soon, too.
Beth and I devoured Sarah Miles’ latest, Jesus Freak: Feeding–Healing–Raising the Dead (Jossey Bass; $21.99) a powerful memoir to follow her spectacular Take This Bread: A Radical Conversion. One need not agree with her on everything to be utterly taken by her amazing writing, her honest and raw testimony, her stunning prose about her vibrant work among the crazy and poor and disenfranchised in San Francisco. I tell folks that she makes wild-woman Anne Lamott seem like Barry Manilow. Steve Brown, a conservative Reformed author and radio guy we trust, had a fabulous interview with her a while back, so we aren’t the only evangelicals insisting she is worth reading. Books and Culture did a podcast discussing her work, too, which I have not yet heard. Check it out here.
And, we just got a stack of the new paperback by Dr. Walter Brueggemann, Journey to the Common Good (WJK;$16.95.) These were wonderfully delivered at Regent College in British Columbia, and I’ve listened to the CDs more than once. To see these three major addresses in print is thrilling. I may become one of our favorite Brueggy books.
We’ll tell you more about these, and more, in due time. If you want to order them now, we’ll offer a 20% discount off any listed. Just email the order here (tell us you saw the special offer to indicate that you are a BookNotes reader) or call us at the shop (717-246-3333.)
brand new books by
McLaren, Peterson, Miles, Brueggemann
Hearts & Minds 234 East Main Street Dallastown, PA 17313 717.246.3333