Against the mental grain

2013 Books Issue | Toss a few challenging old but pertinent classics into that pile of summer books
by Mindy Belz
Posted 6/14/13, 01:00 am

Summer reading lists surround us, many of them commendable, like those you’ll find in this annual books issue of WORLD. Yet if the term “summer reading” conjures only escapism, a luxurious time to indulge in reading that soothes and affirms, these recommendations may not be for you. We’ve deliberately focused on good if a little challenging reads on topics not well covered in mainstream conversations, on the bestseller lists, or in the front-of-the-bookstore kiosks.

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Literary wanderings

2013 Books Issue | A ‘Great American Novel’ haunted by disillusion should point us to Someone bigger
by Janie B. Cheaney
Posted 6/14/13, 01:00 am

What’s the Great American Novel? Publishers Weekly asked that question of its bookish readers last March. The top three contenders (in ascending order) are about a teenage boy drifting down the Mississippi with an escaped slave, a self-made millionaire hitching his dreams to the woman he loved and lost, and a 9-year-old girl and her older brother confronting racism in a small Southern town. Can you guess the titles?

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Krieg Barrie

Digital dynamite

2013 Books Issue | Once a curious novelty, e-books have exploded in popularity
by Angela Lu Fulton
Posted 6/14/13, 01:00 am

WORLD’s 2000 books issue explored the then-unprecedented idea of electronic books, heralding it as an opportunity for Christian authors to get their books out without the cost and hassle of going through the publishing process: “E-books are where the internet was in 1994: Everybody knows something really cool is coming, but they don’t know exactly what.”

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