Now that I’m back and sifting through the mail, I find books that await me — I am greeted by review copies of Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior by Ori Brafman and Rom Brafman; Ori Brafman of The Starfish and the Spider fame (with Rod Beckstrom). It just hit the NYT Bestseller list, and I’m looking forward to digging into it. If it’s half as good as Starfish, it’ll be an insightful gem. I’m wondering if it will offer me some insight into the sway of the crowd in religious movements trending into what some may call “irrational behaviour,” whether exhibited in authoritarian leadership structures or in “revival” movements like Lakeland.
In addition to this was the latest batch from Mike Morrell for The Ooze Select Bloggers’ book review list. This batch included Confessions of a Good Christian Guy: The Secrets Men Keep and the Grace that Saves Them by Tom Davis and Tammy Maltby, The New Atheist Crusaders and Their Unholy Grail: The Misguided Quest to Destroy Your Faith by Becky Garrison, Good Intentions: Nine Hot-Button Issues Viewed Through the Eyes of Faith by Charles North and Bob Smietana, and Looking for God: An Unexpected Journey through Tattoos, Tofu, and Pronouns by Nancy Ortberg. Also in the package was Songs For a Revolution of Hope, Vol 1: everything must change, a music CD collaborated on by Brian McLaren and Tracy Howe.
While passing through Kansas City earlier this week, I stopped in briefly at Steel’s Used Christian Books, well worth a visit if you’re in the area. I walked out with three by Robert Capon — The Parables of Grace and 2/3 of his trilogy, The Romance of the Word: One Man’s Love Affair With Theology: Three Books: An Offering of Uncles / The Third Peacock / Hunting the Divine Fox. (I’m just missing An Offering of Uncles.) Sitting on top of a box in an aisle was Gustaf Aulen’s Christus Victor: An Historical Study of the Three Main Types of the Idea of Atonement, so I nabbed that. On a whim, I asked if he had any editions of Everett Fox’s translation of the Old Testament, and he came up with The Five Books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy (The Schocken Bible, Volume 1) in a nice hardcover volume.
While investigating a Barnes & Noble, I found a copy of Jeffrey Sachs’ The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time on the bargain table, and it followed me home. On the subject of books I should have had my own copy of long ago, I also picked up The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Community Centers, Beauty Parlors, General Stores, Bars, Hangouts and How They Get You Through the Day by Ray Oldenberg, so all of these are in the pile now as well. Yes, the pile that I was already behind on three weeks ago.