Into the Book

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Biography


  1. Pope Francis may be one of the most unusual Popes of the modern era. He came into his role as Bishop of Rome only after the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, something which had not happened for 700 years. Pope Francis also had the oddity of being born in Argentina, making him the first non-European Pope since the eighth century. However, Pope Francis has also caused a stir among the liberal and conservative sides of Catholicism. Firstly, through his radical mercy for those outside and estranged from the church, but also through his unwillingness to simply rewrite Catholic doctrine. In this time where the Catholic Church has faced so much scandal and corruption, Pope Francis may be the perfect man for the job. Yet, who is he? Where did he come from, what has he done? Pope Francis, through no real effort of his own, may be the most well-known person on the planet right now, but I for one knew very little about him. Thus, what better way to learn about him than to read his biography?

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  2. Owen Strachan’s latest biography, The Colson Way, is on the subject of “Loving your neighbor and living with faith in a hostile world.” Chuck Colson, presidential aide to Richard Nixon turned champion of prison ministry and revitalizing American culture, is his subject. Strachan has created an enlightening and valuable look at a man who many may not have heard of — especially those of us younger folks. Through the example of Colson’s life, Strachan challenges his readers to live with a bold and loving faith in the middle of the public square.

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  3. Eric Metaxas has already established himself as an excellent biographer with an attention to detail and writing style that is rarely surpassed today. His best-known works are Wilberforce and Bonhoeffer, two meaty biographies that punch deep into their subject’s lives. Following these monster volumes, Metaxas turned his attention to a smaller, condensed book withbiographies of seven great men, titled Seven Men. Now, he’s back with a repeat performance for women. (more…)

  4. A Warrior’s Faith is a closer look at Ryan Job, an elite Navy SEAL who was wounded in action during a tour of duty in the Iraq War. Thomas Nelson describes the book as “a firsthand account of divinely directed change in a man who was transformed by God’s love and who in turn transformed everyone around him.” Though not as well-known as the American Sniper, Chris Kyle, Job worked alongside Kyle. This book tells the story of his service, his wound, and his recovery.

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  5. Ben Franklin, George Whitefield, and the surprising friendship that invented America.

    Randy Petersen’s latest book, The Printer and the Preacher, is a medium-length biography on Ben Franklin and George Whitefield, telling how together they were broadly influential over the fledgling United States. It’s a fascinating book, despite a few flaws, and serves as a great introduction to both men and how they related. Read on for more: (more…)

  6. A short life of Jonathan Edwards is an excellent biography by George Marsden that is “meant to be read and enjoyed as well as studied.” Marsden offers an introductory look at Jonathan Edwards’ life, accomplishments, and work and studies him as a crucial figure in the Great Awakening and leading up to the American Revolution. (more…)

  7. Bonhoeffer: Abridged is a more accessible version of Eric Metaxas’ 624-page biography of German pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Metaxas has personally trimmed the book, and it ends up at about 40% of the size of the original. For all intents and purposes, it’s a less in-depth but still enlightening look at one of the heroes of World War II.

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  8. The Daring Heart of David Livingstone, by Jay Milbrandt, is a solid short biography on David Livingstone. Subtitled “African slavery and the publicity stunt that saved millions,” the book centers around the African slave trade and Livingstone’s lifelong fight to abolish it completely. It’s a solid book that addresses Livingstone’s life well for the amount of space it has.

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  9. What would you be willing to give for the expansion of Christ’s great Kingdom? What would you be willing to endure?

    John Piper’s Filling up the Afflictions of Christ examines the lives of three Christian men–Bible translator/smuggler William Tyndale, and missionaries Adoniram Judson and John Paton, telling their stories with fascinating excerpts from biographies and quotes from historians, giving vivid images and ideas of what these men went through–and why and how.
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  10. After reading Gracia Burnham’s autobiography, I was left with an odd taste in my mouth. I’ve read biographies in my time, but this one made me feel empty after I read it. Perhaps it is the title: In the Presence of My Enemies: a Gripping Account of the Kidnapping of American Missionaries and Their Year of Terror in the Philippine Jungle. What this title tells us is that it will be an exciting and thought-provoking biography. However, when I read it, I did not feel excitement, terror, or any emotions whatsoever from the people represented in this book. (more…)

ABOUT ItB REVIEWS

Into the Book was born out of a crazy idea of a blog that'd provide book reviews for teens. There aren't very many book review websites out there exposing awesome, high-quality Christian literature, and there are even fewer that target teenagers. Since 2009, we've been providing high-quality book reviews to the world through our blog. Into the Book has grown around reviews since then, but it remains our oldest project.

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