Choosing Your Religion
B; M;;;;; Z. N;;;;;
Each fall, religion and spirituality publishers bring out a
bounty of books for gift giving, course adoption, and
general reading pleasure, as days grow short and life moves
indoors. This season sees the release of a bumper crop of
books on a wide range of topics, including Islam, Mormon
feminism, religious violence, the cult of capitalism, and more.
; The Abbey: A Story of Discovery
James Martin. HarperOne, Oct. 13.
Martin is a popular nonfiction author and an exceptionally capable public face of Catholicism.
His fiction debut will be closely watched.
; At the Altar of Wall Street: The Rituals, Myths, Theologies, Sacraments, and Mission of the
Religion Known as the Modern Global Economy
Scott W. Gustafson. Eerdmans, Oct. 1.
It’s time to call Mammon by its name and study the worship of this powerful entity.
; American Qur’an
Sandow Birk. Norton/Liveright, Nov. 2.
Los Angeles artist Birk spent nine years creating a personal English-language Qur’an, following
Islamic traditions for transcribing the text and using illustrations of scenes from American life.
The stunning result will be a conversation starter.
Paul Young. Howard, Sept. 22.
It’s not like this story has never been written before. But look for an offbeat interpretation of a
formative religious figure from the author of The Shack, which got millions of readers thinking
and arguing about the everyday meaning of complicated Christian theology.
; Hospitality and Islam: Welcoming in God’s Name
Mona Siddiqui. Yale Univ., Nov. 24.
This path to understanding the teachings and traditions within Islam is itself most welcome,
and Siddiqui looks at this important practice that religions mandate through the lens of gender.
; Mormon Feminism: Essential Writings
Edited by Joanna Brooks, Rachel Hunt Steenblik, and Hannah Wheelwright. Oxford Univ., Oct. 1.
As Mormonism continues its evolution as a force in American public religious life, this needed
compendium will help characterize this uniquely American faith.
; Nine Essential Things I’ve Learned About Life
Harold S. Kushner. Knopf, Sept. 1.
The man who taught millions of people what to do and say when bad things happen to good
people offers more distilled teachings that will likely also be encouraging, well seasoned, and
; Not in God’s Name: Confronting Religious Violence
Jonathan Sacks. Schocken, Oct. 6.
Sacks, the former chief rabbi of Great Britain, will bring a much-needed global perspective to
this knotty issue.
; Salvation with a Smile: Joel Osteen, Lakewood Church, and American Christianity
Phillip Luke Sinitiere. New York Univ., Nov. 13.
This is the book for people who ask ,“What is it about that smiley TV preacher?” And yes, Osteen
himself has another book coming this fall.
; Where I Am: Heaven, Eternity, and Our Life Beyond the Now
Billy Graham. Thomas Nelson, Sept. 29.
Publisher Thomas Nelson presents this as the final project from Graham. It’s safe to say that he
had help in putting this together; it’s also safe to say that many will be interested in his unique
RELIGION & SPIRITUALITY TOP 10