Faculty & Staff Summer Reading Ideas: Lewis Edition

By Matt Lewis

  • Fleming Rutledge,  The Crucifixion – Rutledge is a gifted preacher and theologian who has an infectious love for God and his word. In this book, Rutledge brings us back to the absolute necessity of the Cross, in all its harrowing detail, and its centrality to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 
  • Peter Leithart,  1&2 Kings – Peter Leithart is one of my favorite theologians and the commentaries in the Brazos Theological series are excellent theological resources. Leithart is a brilliant Biblical theologian who shows how the biblical narrative connects throughout scripture, ultimately showing us that Jesus Christ is the central character throughout. 
  • Peter Leithart,  1&2 Chronicles – See above.
  • Alexander Schmemann,  For the Life of the World – Schmemann shows how our worship and communion with God is at the heart of the Church’s mission to reach the world with the Gospel of Christ.
  • Colin Gunton, The Triune Creator – I read Gunton’s Christ and Creation and was thoroughly intrigued by his robust doctrines of Christology, Pneumatology, Incarnation, and Creation and how he weaved them together. In this book, Gunton gives a theological history of the doctrine of creation and how it speaks to our modern scientific age.
  • Gene Wolfe,  The Best of Gene Wolfe – Gene Wolfe is one of my favorite Science Fiction and Fantasy authors. A word to the wise, if you read some of his longer, more famous novels then you are jumping into the deep end of the Science Fiction pool. His writing style is dense and layered with analogy and deeper meaning. Wolfe loves to use the reliability of a first person narrator (is the narrator truthful? Forgetful? etc.), the fluidity of time, themes from Myth (Greek, Roman, and Arthurian), as well as Christian imagery.
  • Gene Wolfe,  The Devil in a Forest – This is a well written medieval fairy tale fantasy.
  • Gene Wolf, The Land Across – I am familiar with most of Gene Wolfe’s writings so when I find one at a bookstore (usually Half Priced Books or Lucky Dog books) I snatch it up without hesitation. 
  • P.G. Wodehouse,  Meet Mr. Mulliner – Wodehouse is the funniest writer I have ever read. It is impossible to feel down or melancholy after reading one of his novels. I usually read within his Bertie Wooster and Jeeves series but this is just as hilarious. If you are looking for a writer who will bring you pure joy and laughter then you should read his works.
  • Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child – So…I recently re-discovered these two thriller/mystery authors during this year’s “spring break”, right at the beginning of the Pandemic. In the 8th grade I read their first book, Relic, and its sequel, Reliquary, and really enjoyed their story of an ancient world colliding with ours in New York city set in the Museum of Natural History. Personally, I have always gravitated towards stories that include other worlds, lost cities, ancient secrets, forgotten languages, hidden islands, etc. and these two write thrillers that use many of these themes. Their books are not high art by any means but they are interesting and fun. Listen, I love to eat fine Italian food (my favorite dish is Ribollita or Pappardelle ai Cinghiale) but I also love a good hot dog, you know? I just finished Thunderhead, which follows an archaeologist who leads an expedition to find a lost Anasazi city in the treacherous box canyon country of New Mexico and Utah. In between, I have read about fifteen of their books since the beginning of the Pandemic.