Recovering the Lost Art of Reading

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Availability: Available on back-order SKU: 9781433564277-DSI



ISBN: 9781433564277


A Christian Perspective on the Joys of Reading

Reading has become a lost art. With smartphones offering us endless information with the tap of a finger, it’s hard to view reading as anything less than a tedious and outdated endeavor. This is particularly problematic for Christians, as many find it difficult to read even the Bible consistently and attentively. Reading is in desperate need of recovery.

Recovering the Lost Art of Reading addresses these issues by exploring the importance of reading in general as well as studying the Bible as literature, offering practical suggestions along the way. Leland Ryken and Glenda Faye Mathes inspire a new generation to overcome the notion that reading is a duty and instead discover it as a delight.

About the Authors:

Leland Ryken

Leland Ryken (PhD, University of Oregon) served as professor of English at Wheaton College for nearly fifty years. He has authored or edited over fifty books, including The Word of God in English and A Complete Handbook of Literary Forms in the Bible. He is a frequent speaker at the Evangelical Theological Society’s annual meetings and served as literary stylist for the English Standard Version Bible.

Glenda Faye Mathes

Glenda Faye Mathes(BLS, University of Iowa) is a professional writer with a passion for literary excellence. She has authored over a thousand articles and several nonfiction books as well as the Matthew in the Middle fiction series. Glenda has been the featured speaker at women’s conferences and at seminars for prison inmates.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Welcome to the Conversation

Part 1: Reading Is a Lost Art
Chapter 1: Is Reading Lost?
Chapter 2: What Have We Lost?
Chapter 3: Why Consider Reading an Art?

Part 2: Reading Literature
Chapter 4: What Is Literature?
Chapter 5: Why Does Literature Matter?
Chapter 6: What Does Literature Offer?
Chapter 7: Reading Stories: Tell Me a Story
Chapter 8: Reading Poems: Songs of the Soul
Chapter 9: Reading Novels: Come Away with Me
Chapter 10: Reading Fantasy: A Far Journey
Chapter 11: Reading Children’s Books: Once Upon a Time
Chapter 12: Reading Creative Nonfiction: To Tell the Truth
Chapter 13: Reading the Bible as Literature: Words of Delight

Part 3: Recovering the Art of Reading
Chapter 14: Recovery through Discovery
Chapter 15: Truth in Literature
Chapter 16: The Moral Vision in Literature
Chapter 17: Beauty in Literature
Chapter 18: Discovering Literary Excellence
Chapter 19: Freedom to Read
Chapter 20: Reading Good Books
Chapter 21: Calling and Creativity
Chapter 22: Literature and the Spiritual Life: Over and Above


“No one more than Christians should appreciate and cultivate the reading of well-written words. Yet, with so much else vying for our attention, many today have forgotten—or perhaps never really learned—how to read with care and skill the words that have shaped human history for thousands of years. Whether you are a student, teacher, parent, or pastor, Recovering the Lost Art of Reading will instruct and delight you in God’s wonderful gift of language and literature.”
Karen Swallow Prior, Research Professor of English and Christianity and Culture, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary; author, On Reading Well

“In this literate but accessible book, Leland Ryken and Glenda Faye Mathes first rescue true literature from the trash heap of ‘text’ to which it has been confined for the last half century and then provide their readers with tools for engaging fully with the goodness, truth, and beauty of the imaginative poetry and prose of the past and present.”
Louis Markos, Professor of English and Scholar in Residence, Houston Baptist University; author, From Achilles to Christ and Literature: A Student’s Guide

“Both practical and inspirational, Recovering the Lost Art of Reading deserves a wide audience. May it spur us, as ‘people of the book,’ to slow down and savor the riches of literature and the great gift of literacy.”
Janie Cheaney, Senior Writer, WORLD magazine

“Thoughtful, challenging, and even harrowing, Recovering the Lost Art of Reading persuasively exhorts us to recover the serenity, joy, and wonder of serious reading. Those who seriously engage this book will find themselves blessedly refreshed, educated, and motivated to pursue the good, the true, and the beautiful.”
David V. Urban, Professor of English, Calvin University; author, Milton and the Parables of Jesus

Additional information

Weight 367 g
Dimensions 216 × 140 × 20 mm

Ryken, Leland, (Author), Mathes, Glenda, (Author)

Publication Summary

Crossway (2021), 304 pages

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