Monday, March 05, 2007

Spring Reading Challenge

It is with some trepidation that I have decided to sign onto the
Spring Reading Challenge posted by Seasonal Soundings; I've never before participated in a Reading Challenge, however I've decided that I need a little more intentionality (new word?) in my reading. I have small piles of books in just about every room of the house, with the exception of the children's bedrooms, and many of these piles have books in them which are partially read or else I've set them out just because I long to find time to read them. (Active Son loves to move these piles around and/or re-shelve the books so the house doesn't look too cluttered. I'd rather use the adjective "interesting".) And, as I've gleaned some great book recommendations from others' book lists, I'm posting my list as well. The categories:

Great Books--these are books which, barring any mid-term curriculum changes, which I have been known to make, I will read with Active Son and Oldest Daughter as part of our Great Books study:

  • Poetry and Prose of John Donne (selections)
  • Paradise Lost~John Milton
  • Christianity for the Modern Pagans; Pascal's Pensees, Edited, Outlined, and Explained by Peter Kreeft
  • Life and Diary of David Brainerd~Jonathan Edwards
  • Political Writings of John Locke (selections)
  • Essay on Criticism~Alexander Pope
  • The Social Contract (selections)~Jean-Jacques Rousseau
  • Common Sense~Thomas Paine
  • The Federalist Papers

Digging Deeper
--These three books are currently in proccess. All three discuss ideas that have occupied a lot of my thinking time lately and, ideally, I would like to finish these books, gather my thoughts from the copious underlinings in these books and actually write something. Realistically, this probably won't happen this spring, at least for all three of them. Maybe one or two? Maybe.

  • Above All Earthly Pow'rs, Christ in a Postmodern World~David Wells
  • The Art of Teaching~Gilbert Highet
  • Poetic Knowledge~James Taylor

Read Alouds--Can I count these too? These are books I'm reading to my children:

  • A History of he English Speaking Peoples, Volume I, The Birth of Britain~Winston Churchill
  • Fields of Home~Ralph Moody
  • Carry On Mr. Bowditch~Jean Lee Latham

Devotional--The first book on this list is a daily guide to a year long read-through-the-Bible plan. If the plan is followed (why do I say "if", you ask?) one will read the Old Testament once and the New Testament twice during the course of a year. I'm already behind so I will likely be finishing this one in the Spring of 2008, if all goes well.

  • For the Love of God~D.A. Carson
  • When You Pray, Making the Lord's Prayer Your Own~Philip Graham Ryken

Half-Read on the Nightstand:

  • In the Beginning: The Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture~Alister Mcgrath

Now that I've made my list, I notice a glaring lack of fiction books. I'll have to work on that. And, no time now for convenient links. Maybe I can work on that later. Maybe.


Kathleen Hamilton said...

Well, you have some interesting reads in there! I like how you grouped them, too. The one about the KJV (the translation of choice in our family) sounds fascinating!

Robert read the Brainerd book when he was in high school--I have to admit that was a difficult work to get through. All the "spiritual sweetness" followed by "spiritual depression" got a bit old. Don't get me wrong--I think his dedication to the gospel was amazing as well as laudable, but the way his diary was written didn't do too much for me.

And hey, I can identify with the lack of fiction, although I read quite a bit of it in the last couple of months. Should put me in a good position for lots of non-fiction for the rest of the year without my boys bugging me constantly :-).

desert mom said...

Thanks for your comment on the Brainerd book, Kathleen. I haven't taken a close look at but I had in the back of my mind that this may be a book we would excerpt. Maybe we'll read some of the Brainerd book along with a Jonathan Edward's sermon.

patti said...

Do you have an overall, bigger plan in which these lists of "great books" fits? I recognize all the philosophical/historical titles, but wonder how you chose the others. The Christianity for Modern Pagans book sounds very interesting. How have you done with the Great Books with your children? I'm having trouble doing much reading with my 9th grade daughter while doing history reading and writing instruction with my 12th grade son. Of course, he's graduating this year and so maybe I can do better with my daughter next year. I'd be interested in hearing about your bigger plan, if you have one.