February 2018 Selection

February 2018 Featured Books

See the Ordering section below for other information about ordering these titles.

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As an alternative, you are also welcome to pay by telling us your Visa or Mastercard details, by online banking or by cheque. Email or phone us to place your order and arrange payment using one of these options.Each month we choose a selection of titles that we think you will find stimulating and satisfying to read. So come back to the Monthly Selections section of our website regularly.

Please also ask us about any other books you are interested in. We will give you a price and time to deliver. Emailing us at books@pgpl.co.nz works best.


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Some books will be in stock. Others will be ordered in when you place your order.  These will usually take 3 to 6 weeks to arrive.

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[Prices, stock levels and estimated delivery time for titles on this page were last updated on 29 January 2018]

Unbelievable:
Why Neither Ancient Creeds Nor the Reformation Can Produce a Living Faith Today.
John Shelby Spong.
Hbk 320pp. ISBN  9780062641298.
HarperOne (2018).
$52.00.
[Publishing 13 Feb 2018,
then allow 2 weeks].

Spong outlines 12 “theses” to help today’s believers more deeply contemplate and reshape their faith.

As an educator, clergyman, and writer who has devoted his life to his faith, Spong has enlightened Christians and challenged them to explore their beliefs in new and meaningful ways. In this, his final book, he continues that rigorous tradition, once again offering a revisionist approach that strengthens Christianity and secures its relevance for generations to come.


The Triumph of Christianity:
How a Forbidden Religion Swept the World.
Bart D Ehrman.
Hbk 352pp. ISBN 9781501136702.

Simon & Schuster (2017).
$52.00.
[Publishing 13 Feb 2018,
then allow 2 weeks].

Christianity didn’t have to become the dominant religion in the West. It easily could have remained a sect of Judaism fated to have the historical importance of the Sadducees or the Essenes.

Ehrman, a master explainer of Christian history, texts, and traditions, shows how a religion whose first believers were 20 or so illiterate day laborers in a remote part of the empire became the official religion of Rome, converting 30 million people in just 400 years. This book combines deep knowledge and meticulous research in an eye-opening, immensely readable narrative that upends the way we think about the single most important cultural transformation our world has ever seen—one that revolutionised art, music, literature, philosophy, ethics, economics, and law.


Sabbath as Resistance.
New Edition with Study Guide.
Walter Brueggemann.
Pbk 150pp. ISBN 9780664263294.
Westminster John Knox (2017).
$29.99.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

In this new edition which includes a study guide, Brueggemann writes that the Sabbath is not simply about keeping rules but rather about becoming a whole person and restoring a whole society.

Brueggemann calls out our 24/7 society of consumption, a society in which we live to achieve, accomplish, perform, and possess. We want more, own more, use more, eat more, and drink more. Brueggemann shows readers how keeping the Sabbath allows us to break this restless cycle and focus on what is truly important: God, other people, all life.

Perfect for groups or self-reflection, this book offers a transformative vision of the wholeness God intends, giving world-weary Christians a glimpse of a more fulfilling and simpler life through Sabbath observance.


Social Investment:
A New Zealand Policy Experiment. Jonathan Boston; Derek Gill eds.
Pbk 500pp. ISBN 9781988533582.
Bridget Williams Books (2018).
$69.99.
[Publishing 9 Feb 2018,
then allow 7-10 days].

The idea of social investment has obvious intuitive appeal. But is it robust? Is it built on sound philosophical principles and secure analytical foundations? Will it deliver better outcomes?

As ideas about social investment evolve, this book brings together leading academics, commentators and policy analysts from the public and private sectors to answer three big questions:

  • How should social investment be defined and conceptualised?
  • How should it be put into practice?
  • In what policy domains can it be most productively applied?

As governments in New Zealand and abroad continue to explore how best to tackle major social problems, this book is essential for people seeking to understand social policy in the 21st century.

Contributors include: Jonathan Boston, Sir Michael Cullen, Derek Gill, David Hanna, Girol Karacaoglu and Verna Smith.


Free As a Bird:
The Story of Malala.
Lina Maslo.
Hardcover, with dust jacket 40pp. ISBN. 9780062560773.
Balzer & Bray. (2018).
$36.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

The inspiring true story of Malala Yousafzai, human rights activist and the youngest ever winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. (For ages 4-8 years.)

When Malala Yousafzai was born, people shook their heads because girls were considered bad luck. In Pakistan, people said girls should not be educated. But Malala and her father were not afraid. She secretly went to school and spoke up for education in her country.

And even though an enemy tried to silence her powerful voice, she would not keep quiet. Malala travelled around the world to speak to girls and boys, to teachers, reporters, presidents, and queens—to anyone who would listen—and advocated for the right to education and equality of opportunity for every person. She would shout so that those without a voice could be heard. So everyone could be as free as a bird.


Meet Me at the Well:
The Girls and Women of the Bible.
Jane Yolen, Barbara Diamond Goldin.
Hbk 112pp. ISBN 9781580893749.
Charlesbridge Publishing (2018).
$41.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

A modern, feminist take on stories of girls and women in the Hebrew Bible.

In biblical times, wells were the centres of social life for teenage girls–where future husbands and thirsty animals might appear and news and gossip are traded. Through 14 stories that range from Eve, the first woman and mother, to Esther, who becomes saviour and queen of her people, readers learn about these and other complicated subjects including marriage, motherhood, infertility, widowhood, and inheritance as well as female roles and experiences as judge, prophet, and leader.

A much-needed, thoughtful updating of Bible stories about women that functions as both storytelling experience and classic reference book.


Engaging the Word.
Peter M Phillips.
Pbk 176pp. ISBN 9780857465832.
BRF (2017).
$27.50.
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Phillips is convinced that the Church in the West is not devouring the Bible, it’s not meditating on the word, as it should. As a result, Jesus’ followers are spiritually malnourished and failing to thrive.

Engaging the Word sets out what we mean by biblical literacy and what it looks like in contemporary Western culture, exploring the benefits of biblical literacy for Christian disciples, and focusing on the benefits for Christian leaders as local theologians and preachers. A series of practical explorations of the role of the Bible will help us reach up to God, reach in to develop our own identity in Christ, and to reach out to others.


Love, Remember:
40 Poems of Loss, Lament and Hope.
Malcolm Guite.
Pbk 224pp. ISBN 9781786220011.
Canterbury Press (2017).
$40.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Guite chooses 40 poems from across the centuries that express the universal experience of loss and reflects on them to draw out the comfort, understanding and hope they offer.

The choice of 40 poems is significant and reflects an ancient practice still observed in some European and Middle Eastern societies of taking extra-special care of a bereaved person in the 40 days following a death – our word quarantine come from this. They explore the nature and the risk of love, the pain of letting go and look toward glimpses of resurrection.


Drops into an Ocean:
Continuing the story of Caring For Life.
Juliet Barker.
Pbk 128pp. ISBN 9781786220141.
Canterbury Press (2017).
$31.00.
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

An inspiring story of what one church can achieve. 30 years ago, Caring For Life began as a local Christian response to the desperate needs of vulnerable young men in Leeds, struggling to adapt to life beyond the care system.

From this small beginning it rapidly expanded to offer lifelong support to over 100 men and women of all ages who had fallen into homelessness, crime and addiction. Barker tells of the miraculous transformation that has made the charity’s home, Crag House Farm, a state-of-the-art horticultural, agricultural, equestrian, therapeutic and adult learning centre – all in the face of funding cuts and fears of closure.


Bruised and Wounded:
Struggling to Understand Suicide.
Ronald Rolheiser.
Pbk 96pp. ISBN 9781640600843.
Paraclete Press (2017).
$24.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

A new way of understanding death by suicide with chapters on:

  • Removing the Taboo
  • Despair as Weakness rather than Sin
  • Reclaiming the Memory of our Loved One

“Unique insights on the nature of suicide, its devastating effects, and God’s embracing love throughout. Fr. Ron is exactly who I would have wanted at my side when my daughter died.” Marjorie Antus, author

“Don’t let the size of this book fool you into thinking it doesn’t have much to say about suicide. Each page—each sentence—is rich in insight, wisdom, compassion, and most of all, comfort. Ronald Rolheiser gently dismantles the age-old myths and taboos associated with suicide, and gives broken-hearted survivors of suicide loss genuine reasons for hope.” Kay Warren, cofounder of Saddleback Church


When It Feels Impossible to Pray:
Prayers for the Grieving.
Thomas McPherson.
Pbk 64pp. ISBN 9781640600683.
Paraclete Press (2017).
$19.99.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

This little book can be your entry to talking with God — with and without words — in this most difficult time. Just sit still … Quietness is where prayerfulness begins.

For those who have experienced a sudden and terrible loss, it is important to realise that you don’t have to do the things one normally associates with prayer to connect with God in a way that’s prayer-like. Just sit still, if you like. Grieving people often find themselves doing a lot of sitting still. Stunned. Allow yourself a time to be quiet, to answer to no one, to accomplish nothing at all.

“In the end prayer’s essence is simply this: We need to open ourselves to God in such a way that we are capable of hearing God say to us, individually, ‘I love you!’” Ronald Rolheiser


Mercy:
Life in the Season of Dying.
Peter Roebbelen.
Pbk 196pp. ISBN 9781612617831.
Paraclete Press (2018).
$34.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

What would you do with your life, if you knew it was going to end soon? A pastor reveals lessons for living he’s learned from the dying.

Mercy is a pastor’s recording of the life lessons he’s discovered as a result of sitting at the bedsides of courageous people facing death’s certainty. He explores the gifts that people have given him, the wisdom that he’s gleaned from them, almost as if he’s been the one being counselled, rather than the other way around. This joyful and instructive book will encourage anyone who reads it to live to the fullest in the present, and to love the people around them as never before.


Experiencing Christ’s Love:
Establishing a Life of Worship, Prayer, Study, Service and Reflection.
John Twisleton.
Pbk 96pp. ISBN 9780857465177.
Bible Reading Fellowship (2017).
$24.00.
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Twisleton reminds us of Jesus’ gracious challenge to love God with heart, soul and mind, and to love our neighbour and ourselves.

Against the backdrop of the message of God’s unconditional love in Jesus Christ, the author delivers a wake-up call to the basic Christian patterns of worship, prayer, study, service and reflection. These, he claims, serve to take God’s hand in ours, leading us into his divine possibilities.

Contents:

  • First love: worship – You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart
  • Second love: prayer – You shall love the Lord your God with all your soul
  • Third love: study – You shall love the Lord your God with all your mind
  • Fourth love: service – You shall love your neighbour
  • Fifth love: reflection – You shall love yourself

Glory Happening:
Finding the Divine in Everyday Places.
Kaitlin B Curtice.
Pbk 128pp. ISBN 9781612618968.
Paraclete Press (2017).
$34.00.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].
“A stunner…every sentence is a feast for the senses.” —Rachel Held Evans, author of Searching for Sunday

The search for glory will bring freedom and a fresh perspective to whatever season you happen to find yourself in. Glory Happening is a book of stories and prayers that remind you to take a closer look at your everyday circumstances, to find the magical beauty in everyday experiences. It is an invitation to live deeply into every moment with the expectation that something good will find you at the end of the day. And once you experience glory, you have words to speak, a prayer to pray, and a story to tell. And so glory grows from person to person, and community is created around the reality that God is truly in our midst.


Religion and Extremism:
Rejecting Diversity.
Douglas Pratt.
Pbk 208pp. ISBN 9781474292245.
Bloomsbury (2017).
$79.99.
[Allow 4 weeks].

Believers cannot work for peace unless they first confess their addiction to violence.

Focusing on the three monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, Pratt argues that despite a popular focus on Islam, extremist Jews and Christians can also enact terror and destruction. He stresses that the ideological rejection of diversity underlies religious extremism resulting in violent behaviours and, increasingly, in hardening social and religious attitudes and responses.

An analysis of religiously-driven terrorism reveals the presence of a distinctive and rigid form of exclusivity found in these religions. Pratt reasons that however expressed, the motif of the ‘Absolute’ is central to all, but how that absolute is and has been received, interpreted and responded to, is a matter of great diversity. He also explores contemporary issues of Islamophobia and mutual extremism, identified as ‘reactive co-radicalisation’ and concludes by reflecting on how extremism today might be countered.


Crucible of Faith:
The Ancient Revolution That Made Our Modern Religious World.
Philip Jenkins.
Hbk 352pp. ISBN 9780465096404.
Basic Books (2017).
$55.00.
[Allow 3-4 weeks].

Drawing widely on contemporary sources from outside the canonical Old and New Testaments, Jenkins reveals an era of political violence and social upheaval that ultimately gave birth to entirely new ideas about religion, the afterlife, Creation, and the nature of God.

Heaven and hell, angels and demons, Satan and the Messiah. All of these seem fundamental to the Judeo-Christian religious tradition. Yet these figures are largely, and conspicuously, absent from the Biblical Old Testament.

Jenkins argues that much of the Judeo-Christian tradition we know today was born between 250-50 BCE, during a turbulent “Crucible Era.” It was during these years that Judaism grappled with Hellenising forces and produced new religious ideas that reflected and responded to their changing world. By the time of the fall of the Temple in 70 CE, concepts that might once have seemed bizarre became normalised – and thus passed on to Christianity.


Give Work:
Saving the World One Job at a Time.
Leila Janah.
Hbk 256pp. ISBN 9780735211896.
Penguin (2017).
$49.99.
[Allow 2-3 weeks].

Leila Janah has the solution for the world’s bottom billions. A dynamic social entrepreneur, she founded Samasource with the belief that giving dignified work to the world’s poorest people is the most effective tool for fighting poverty.

Samasource go into communities lacking living-wage jobs—from the refugee camps of Sierra Leone to rural Arkansas—and train people to do digital work, such as verifying data that makes Google’s search algorithms smarter. The steady salary from these jobs from companies like Google, Getty, and Microsoft enables people to move to better neighbourhoods, attain more education, and send their children to school. It changes the lives of the poor permanently, offering them dignity and independence in a way that aid simply cannot.


Changing Jobs:
The Fair go in the New Machine Age.
Jim Chalmers, Mike Quigley.
Pbk 208pp. ISBN 9781863959445.
Redback (2017).
$37.00.
[Allow 3-4 weeks].
An essential guide to the future of work.

For many Australians (and people in New Zealand), rapid progress in artificial intelligence, robotics and automation is a growing anxiety. What will it mean for jobs? What will it mean for their childrens’ futures? More broadly, what will it mean for equality?

The authors believe that we can combine technological change with the fair go. But first we need to understand what’s happening to work, and what’s likely to happen. This is a timely, informative and authoritative book about the changing face of work, and how best to approach it – at both a personal and a political level.


COMING SOON:
Paul: A Biography.
N T (Tom) Wright.
Hbk 256pp. ISBN 9780061730580.
HarperOne (2018).
$54.00.
[Publishing 27 Feb 18,
then allow 2 weeks].

A compelling modern biography that reveals the apostle’s greater role in Christian history—as an inventor of new paradigms for how we understand Jesus and what he accomplished—and celebrates his stature as one of the most effective and influential intellectuals in human history.

For centuries, Paul has been one of the church’s most widely cited saints. While his influence on Christianity has been profound, N. T. Wright argues that Bible scholars and pastors have focused so much attention on Paul’s letters and theology that they have too often overlooked the essence of the man’s life and the extreme unlikelihood of what he achieved.

To Wright, “The problem is that Paul is central to any understanding of earliest Christianity, yet Paul was a Jew; for many generations Christians of all kinds have struggled to put this together.” Wright contends that our knowledge of Paul and appreciation for his legacy cannot be complete without an understanding of his Jewish heritage. Giving us a thoughtful, in-depth exploration of the human and intellectual drama that shaped Paul, Wright provides greater clarity of the apostle’s writings, thoughts, and ideas and helps us see them in a fresh, innovative way.


 

COMING SOON:
Grateful:
The Transformative Power of Giving Thanks.
Diana Butler Bass.
Hbk 256pp. ISBN 9780062659477.
HarperOne (2018).
$49.00.
[Publishing 3 Apr 18,
then allow 2 weeks].

Diana Butler Bass, author of Grounded and leading trend spotter in contemporary Christianity, explores why gratitude is missing as a modern spiritual practice, offers practical suggestions for reclaiming it, and illuminates how the shared practice of gratitude can lead to greater connection with God, our world, and our own souls.

“Gratitude is the undeniable beginning of the spiritual life.  Diana Butler Bass offers us a superb overview of this virtue in our individual and communal lives. As she unpacked the various graces and challenges associated with expressing thanks, I found myself grateful to her for this deeply spiritual book.” — James Martin, SJ, author of Jesus: A Pilgrimage


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Check out our Lent and Easter 2018 resources, our January 2018 general selection and these books Now in Paperback

Stock list on our website

There are now over 400 titles listed on our website. Click here for a summary of all the books, CDs and DVDs

2018 Year B Annuals

Click here for your selection of Worship, Preaching and Devotional resources for Year B  – 2018 Includes Fresh from the Word 2018 & Upper Room Disciplines 2018.

Specials on Trade Me

We have over 160 titles loaded on Trade Me, many of which are now reduced to $5.00 or less (but only while stock lasts). These are all in stock now. 50 are listed as auctions at any one time. They are all Buy Now only, so order straight away to secure your books. The listings last 5 days, so come back every few days to see a fresh list. Click here for our current listings on TradeMe.

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