The Book Ledger

Inspired by the book log over at the usually excellent Blog & Mablog, this ledger will follow my reading from year to year. Rather than attempting to reconstruct previous years' reading, I'll simply begin in 2017 with the birth of this blog. 

I'll record every book I read—the good, the bad, and the heretical—so please don't mistake mere appearance on this list as an unasterisked recommendation. As I am a notorious re-reader, you'll also see repeats over time, especially of my favorite works of fiction, which I find refresh my sense of wonder and help me see through the numbing regularity of things and into the Deep Magic of the Emperor over the Sea. No, I'm not just pumping up my numbers (as if this were baseball or something).

That being said, here's the simple format you'll find below. For each book, you'll get the title, author, and an unscientific, licked-finger-to-the-wind, hip-shot rating out of 10. Yes, The Chronicles of Narnia will all be receiving at least 10 out of 10. As you may know, I occasionally review books in more depth. Books for which such a review exists will appear in bold and as a link to its review. Additionally, if it seems as if the books are grouped by author, it is not because I've rearranged them in this way, but simply that I tend to read several books by one author in sequence. Enjoy.

Oh, one more thing. If you've ever thought to yourself, "Man, I really love that Brian guy. I wish there was some way I could represent that love in some kind of physical object; incarnate my love, if you will." This button is for you:

The Year of Our Lord 2017

1. The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright (7.5/10)
2. The Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling (9/10)
3. The Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling (8/10)
4. The Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (8.5/10)
5. The Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling (9/10)
6. The Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling (7.5/10)
7. The Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling (9/10)
8. The Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (10/10)
9. Desiring God by John Piper (10/10)
10. The Pleasures of God by John Piper 9/10)
11. Five Points by John Piper (9.5/10)
12. Future Grace by John Piper (8/10)
13. 100 Cupboards by N.D. Wilson (8.5/10)
14. Dandelion Fire by N.D. Wilson (8.5/10)
15. The Chestnut King by N.D. Wilson (9.5/10)
16. Darwin's Dilemma by Dr. Stephen Meyer (7.5/10)
17. For Calvinism by Michael Horton (7/10)
18. Empires of Dirt by Douglas Wilson (8.5/10)
19. Confessions of a Food Catholic by Douglas Wilson (9/10)
20. The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
21. The Lion, The Witch, & The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
22. The Horse & His Boy by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
23. Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
24. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis (11/10)
25. The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
26. The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis (11/10)
27. The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings by Philip Zaleski & Carol Zaleski (8/10)
28. God's Glory in Salvation through Judgment by James Hamilton (9/10)
29. God's Indwelling Presence: The Holy Spirit in the Old and New Testaments by James Hamilton (8/10)
30. Fit to Burst: Abundance, Mayhem, & the Joys of Motherhood by Rachel Jankovic (9/10)
31. Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy (?/10—I'm not smart enough to review this book)
32. Excused Absence by Douglas Wilson (I'm a believer—8.5/10)
33. Loving the Little Years: Motherhood in the Trenches by Rachel Jankovic (9/10)
34. The Contemplative Pastor by Eugene Petersen (8/10)
—Essay: The Poison of Subjectivism by C.S. Lewis (a brilliant, quick read, 10/10)
35. A History of the American People by Paul Johnson (a must-read: 9/10)
36. European Brain Snakes: Postmodernism as a Species by Douglas Wilson (7.5/10)
37. The Seven Deadlies by Douglas Wilson (8/10)
38. My Life for Yours by Douglas Wilson (8.5/10)
39. Live Like a Narnian: Christian Discipleship in Lewis's Chronicles by Joe Rigney (9/10)
40. Death by Living by N.D. Wilson (Simply stunning prose—10/10)
41. The Dragon's Tooth (Ashtown Burials #1) by N.D. Wilson (9/10)
42. The Drowned Vault (Ashtown Burials #2) by N.D. Wilson (9/10)
43. Secrets of a Secret Shopper: Reaching and Keeping Church Guests by Greg Atkinson (5.75/10)
44. Empire of Bones (Ashtown Burials #3) by N.D. Wilson (10/10—Read this series!)
45. Gospel-Powered Humility by William Farley (9/10)
46. None Like Him by Jen Wilkin (Very insightful and well illustrated—9/10)
47. The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis (Often deeply insightful, occasionally acutely misguided—7/10)
48. The Weight of Glory by C.S. Lewis (9/10—the title essay is required reading for preachers)
49. Sensing Jesus by Zack Eswine (A book that gets under your skin and makes you chew—10/10)
50. Pomosexuality: Lust Clusters, Sexual Revolt, & the Christian Responses by Douglas Wilson (Quite fun—9/10)
51. Wordsmithy: Hot Tips for the Writing Life by Douglas Wilson (Helpful, original, and with the typical Dougline allusional fun—9/10)
52. God is the Gospel by John Piper (11/10—this book has changed the Church)
53. Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton (Now I know where the Wilson clan found their voice—9/10)
54. Don't Follow Your Heart by Jon Bloom (Solid—8/10)
55. Preaching and Preachers by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (a thoroughly enjoyable/opinionated Welshman—8/10)
56. Christ-Centered Preaching by Bryan Chapell (First two-thirds, 5.5/10. Last third, 7.5/10—Lots to commend, but missed key elements essential to the aim of preaching for me)
57. Jesus the Son of God: A Christological Title Often Overlooked, Sometimes Misunderstood, and Currently Disputed by D.A. Carson (8.5/10)
58. The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis (Yep. Again. #TreatYoSelf—11/10)
59. The Lion, The Witch, & The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
60. The Horse & His Boy by C.S. Lewis (11/10)
61. Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
62. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis (11/10)
63. The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis (10/10)
64. The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis (17/10)
65. 8 Hours or Less: Writing Faithful Sermons Faster by Ryan Huguley (Just ok for me—7/10)
66. The Temple and the Church's Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God y G.K. Beale (Wow! 9.5/10)
67. The Neglected Qualification by Douglas Wilson (8.5/10—very good, very sobering to consider as a pastor)
68. The Consequences of Ideas by R.C. Sproul (Insightful, yet somewhat dry—7.5/10)
69. For the Children's Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay (Down with the government schools—8.5/10)
70. Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative by Sam Storms (Coherent, precise exegesis & cogent grasp of alternative views—9.5/10)
71. D-Day: June 6, 1944: The Climactic Battle of World War II by Stephen E. Ambrose (8.5/10)
72. The Blenheim Talks by Douglas Wilson (8.5/10)
73. Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl: Wide-Eyed Wonder in God's Spoken World by N.D. Wilson (Fantastic—10/10)
74. Heaven Misplaced: Christ's Kingdom on Earth by Douglas Wilson (Plenty to glean, even if you're not on the Postmil train—8/10)
75. The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss (Best book with no antagonist or real problems—8/10)
76. The Bible and the Future by Anthony Hoekema (Slow first half, dynamite second half—8.5/10)
77. The Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling (Where it all started—9/10)
78. The Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling (8.5/10)
79. The Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (9/10)
80. The Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling (10/10)
81. The Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling (8/10)
82. The Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling (10/10)
83. The Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (11/10)
84. Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Great read with the kids)
85. Undeniable: How Biology Confirms Our Intuition that Life was Designed by Douglas Axe (8.5/10)
86. The Other Side of the Coyne by Douglas Wilson (the polemicist trounces the scientist trying to do polemics—9.5/10)
87. Church Music and the Other Kinds by Douglas Wilson (Usual good one-liners, but overall disjointed. Doug fails to justify many fairly enormous claims in this one—6/10)
88. A Case for Amillennialism: Understanding the End Times by Kim Riddlebarger (Dry, but solid—8/10)
89. Kingdom Come: The Amillennial Alternative by Sam Storms (Still great—9.5/10)
90. Gospel-Centered Kid's Ministry by Brian Dembowczyk (6.5/10)
91. You Are What You Love by James K.A. Smith (A book I'll be recommending until I die—9.5/10)
92. Dispensationalism: Rightly Dividing the People of God? by Keith A. Mathison (7/10)
93. Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Great read with the kids)
94. On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Great read with the kids)
95. Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Child by Anthony Esolen (Incisive, insightful, witty, fun—10/10)
96. Eve in Exile and the Restoration of Femininity by Rebekah Merkle (9/10)
97. The Case for Classical Christian Education by Douglas Wilson (Sealed the dream for me—9/10)
98. Atheism Remix by R. Albert Mohler Jr. (7.5/10)
99. The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien (10/10)
100. The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien (10/10)
101. The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien (11/10)
102. Preaching: Communicating Faith in an Age of Skepticism by Timothy Keller (Very good—9/10)
103. By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Great read with the kids)
104. How to Read and Understand the Biblical Prophets by Peter J. Gentry (Simple and helpful—9/10)
105. Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome (Excellent book, especially for young boys—8.5/10)
106. Perelandra by C.S. Lewis (9/10)
107. Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman (Prophetic, insightful, rigorously logical—9/10)
108. That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis (9/10)
109. Classical Education and the Homeschool by Douglas Wilson, Wes Callahan, & Douglas Jones (9/10)
110. Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson (8/10)
111. The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis (9/10)
112. The Cruelty of Heresy: An Affirmation of Christian Orthodoxy by C. FitzSimons Allison (8.5/10)
113. ESV Reader's Bible, Volume VI: Epistles & Revelation
114. On Being a Theologian of the Cross: Reflections on Luther's Heidelberg Disputation, 1518 by Gerhard O. Forde (8/10)
115. The Secret of Spiritual Joy by William Farley (8/10)
116. Divorce by John Murray (9/10)
117. Preaching the Cross by Mark Dever, J. Ligon Duncan, Albert Mohler Jr., C.J. Mahaney, John MacArthur, & John Piper (9/10)
118. The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder (aloud for the kiddos—highly recommend)
119. ESV Reader's Bible, Volume V: Gospels & Acts
120. ESV Reader's Bible, Volume I: Pentateuch
121. ESV Reader's Bible, Volume II: Historical Books
122. ESV Reader’s Bible, Volume IV: Prophets
123. ESV Reader’s Bible, Volume III: Poetry
124: Popes and Feminists: How the Reformation Frees Women from Feminism by Elise Crapuchettes (9/10)
125. Traveling at Home by Wendell Berry (8/10)
126. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien (10/10)
127. Marriage and the Mystery of the Gospel by Ray Ortlund (9/10)