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Reading List (2021 edition)

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8. BODY

In Body – Biblical Spirituality For The Whole Person, Paula Gooder takes a hard and long look at the biblical representation of the body through a Pauline lens. The central themes of the book are that the body is not unspiritual as long as we deduce that spirituality is not the opposite of the physical, that the body is not bad (messy and fragile, yes but not bad) –  pointer to this is the Pauline theology that the resurrection will entail an embodied transformation and that in addition to the above, far from being the villain that some consider, Paul is careful and sophisticated in his language about bodies.

While I would have liked deeper explorations on how we manage the body we currently inhabit here on earth and how we biblically challenge the inadequacies of our frail bodies and less of the philosophical takes on the goodness or inherent evil of the human body. Two aspects I enjoyed most are how Paula analyses how highly Paul rates the body to the extent that he uses it as a metaphor for the church and hope that lies ahead for our frail bodies upon resurrection. An embodied resurrection is a pointer to the fact that our currently frailed bodies will be remedied in the future. I have always enjoyed Paula Gooder’s writings and while this is as well written as the others, I did not enjoy this as well as I hoped.

3/5

Body 1Body 2Body 3

6. The Consequences of Love

Sulaiman Addonia’s The Consequences of Love was an interesting addition to my bookshelf. I heard a discussion on a podcast where his second novel was being recommended and decided to check reviews online. I searched for one book (Silence is My Mother Tongue) and ended up getting another (The Consequences of Love). The Consequences of Love is a romance novel at the heart of it, and while I rarely read that genre of fictional works, the setting was a pointer that this would not be just a romantic tale between two lovestruck persons.

5. Dodgers

The first interesting point about Dodgers by Bill Beverly is its genre classification. It is often classed as crime fiction, some have called it a coming-of-age novel, while some have gone as far as classifying it under travel fiction. I am not convinced that it has enough crime to be crime fiction and it is no coming-of-age when the main protagonist is already living an adult life before he is even fifteen. The genre classification is largely irrelevant because Dodgers is a well-told and enjoyable work of fiction.

3. Beeronomics

As an avid lover (but a very modest drinker) of beer, literature that explores the history of the special liquid and its transformation down the ages has always fascinated me. Beeronomics is one of the more recent entries into that genre and a decent addition too. Beeronomics charts an insightful (albeit dry) journey of the history of beer production from ancient Egypt through the monasteries of Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries to the modern-day craft breweries in America and Europe.

2. I For Don Bow But I Too Dey Press Phone

The good thing about randomizing my TBR list process ahead of every new year is that it gives every book on my shelf a fair chance of being chosen. I For Don Bow But I Too Dey Press Phone is a good example of that process. I had been down with malaria (which turned out to be COVID-19 days later) weeks back and felt too sick for the book I had begun days earlier (a book on the economic history of beers). I inserted a bookmarker into it, tossed it aside and looked intently at my TBR list picture for a more fun read. I settled for Hymar David’s memoir and I could not have made a better choice.