Best Books I Read (2016 Edition)

Thirteen Best:*

Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel by Russell Moore (2015)

No book is better tuned to how evangelicals should respond to this year’s presidential election than this one, released before it all began.

The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle (1902)

I’m not sure there is a better character in all of fiction than Sherlock Holmes.

The God Who Is There: Finding Your Place in God’s Story by D.A. Carson (2010)

Carson’s book is a little book about the big story, and one of the best and most accessible tellings of it that I have read.

Theology of the Reformers by Timothy George (1988)

This book is essential to understanding the theology behind the Reformation.

Defenders of the Unborn: The Pro-Life Movement Before Roe v. Wade by Daniel K. Williams (2016)

This book is a model of good history, and punctures many myths in the abortion debate, namely: the pro-life movement began as a movement of the Left.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain (1876)

Is there a more enjoyable writer to read than Mark Twain?

Gilead by Marilynne Robinson (2004)

This book is meant to be reread. The best book I read this year.

Macbeth by William Shakespeare (1606)

No writer rewards the work it takes to understand him or her more than Shakespeare.

All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren (1946)

Let’s just say I have seen many echoes of Willie Stark since I read this…

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh (1945)

No book made me want to sit for long periods and think after I finished it more than this one.

America’s God: From Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln by Mark Noll (2002)

The only way to truly understand American Christianity is to read Mark Noll.

Jeeves and the Yuletide Spirit and other stories by P.G. Wodehouse (2014)

I don’t think there is a funnier writer or better crafter of English sentences than P.G. Wodehouse.

The Narnian by Alan Jacobs (2005)

Everything Jacobs writes is worth reading, but this is the single best book about C.S. Lewis.

Most Overrated:

War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells (1898)

I could not fathom a story about a Martian invasion that would leave me bored — and then I read War of the Worlds.

What did you like this year?

*This post has been updated to add The Narnian by Alan Jacobs.


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