What I’m reading just now

Photograph of my Currently Reading bookshelf
Photograph of my “Currently Reading” bookshelf.

In my study I have a bookshelf dedicated to what I’m currently reading, or what’s up next. One of my problems is that I tend to have numerous books on the go at the same time. Some books are things that I’m referencing only a couple of chapters from, or are books that I keep coming back to; others I start because I need the background on something quickly; while still others I want to read just for the pleasure of it. At the moment I’m focusing on simply finishing a couple of books before I get started on any others.

You may be able to make out from the photograph that there are thirteen books there, currently. A mixture of Christian prayer, spirituality and mission interspersed with books about Information Technology.

Here’s a quick jaunt through the books there just now, from left to right:

  • Celebrating Common Prayer — This is the order of daily prayer from the Society of St Francis which I use every day. Okay, most days!
  • Orthodox Prayer Life by Matthew the Poor — A wonderful collection of writings and thoughts about prayer. It’s the kind of book that I dip in and out of rather than read in a systematic manner.
  • Sabbatical Journey by Henri J. Nouwen — This is is taken from Nouwen’s journal during a year’s sabbatical he took not long before he died. I usually read a day’s entry at Morning Prayer.
  • The Inner Christ by John Main — A book that sat on my shelves unread for about five years until recommended by my Spiritual Director. It is a wonderful introduction to silent prayer and meditation. A lovely, lovely book.
  • A Churchless Faith by Alan Jamieson — Investigation into why Christians leave the Church which reveals that a good number leave the established Church not because they have lost their faith but to save their faith! Essential reading.
  • Tentmaking: Perspectives on Self-Supporting Ministry edited by James M M Francis and Leslie J Francis — “essential reading for all those concerned with the development of non-stipendiary ministry, ministers in secular employment, and local ministry.” No prizes on guessing why I might be reading this!
  • You’re an Angel: Being Yourself and Sharing Your Faith by Peter Neilson & David Currie — my father-in-law’s latest book about how to share your faith in everyday situations.
  • Information Architecture for the World Wide Web by Louis Rosenfeld and Peter Morville– Yet another superb book published by O’Reilly. I can see this one being used a great deal more in the next few years!
  • Beyond Bullet Points by Cliff Atkinson — A great introduction to unlocking the potential for PowerPoint using more imaginative ways than simply relying on templates littered with duller than dull bullet-points. I thoroughly recommend this book to anyone who has to use PowerPoint.
  • Web ReDesign 2.0: Workflow That Works by Kelly Goto and Emily Cotler — Another reference book that I keep coming back that outlines the most effective and efficient way of planning websites. I can see this coming in handy too in the next couple of years.
  • Microsoft Office Project 2003 Inside Out by T. Stover — Having found that the equivalent Step by Step series title was like trying to become an expert on London by just having done a tourist sight-seeing tour by bus, I spent my £10 Borders voucher on this mighty tome. This is my kind of reference manual.
  • Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping by Paco Underhill — A fascinating insight into how men and women differ when shopping, and how best to arrange shopping layouts to acheive maximum selling potential. While this refers to real-life bricks-and-mortar stores it also has implications for our online shopping experiences too.
  • Weaving The Web: Origins and Future of the World Wide Web by Tim Berners-Lee — I wish I’d read this sooner. It gives a fascinating insight into how and why TBL invented the World Wide Web in 1989. But more than a simple history TBL also shares some of his hopes for the future of the Web. Exciting stuff, and only two chapters to go…

… and I daren’t even list the books sitting on my To Read After My Currently Reading Shelf Has Been Cleared shelf!

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