Lit!: A Christian Guide to Reading Books (Reinke)

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I love to read.

I hate to read.

I don’t have time to read.

I only read Christian books.

I’m not good at reading.

There’s too much to read.

Chances are, you’ve thought or said one of these exact phrases before because reading is important and in many ways unavoidable.

Learn how to better read, what to read, when to read, and why you should read with this helpful guide from accomplished reader Tony Reinke. Offered here is a theology for reading and practical suggestions for reading widely, reading well, and for making it all worthwhile.

Table of Contents: 

Part 1: A Theology of Books and Reading 

1. Paper Pulp and Etched Granite – Laying the Cornerstone of Our Theology of Books 

2. Wide-Eyed into the Son – How Personal Sin and the Gospel Shape Our Literacy 

3. Reading Is Believing – Savoring Books in an Eye-Candy Culture 

4. Reading from across the Canyon – How a Biblical Worldview Equips Us to Benefit from Books 

5. The Giver’s Voice – Seven Benefits of Reading Non-Christian Books

6. The God Who Slays Dragons – The Purifying Power of Christian Imagination

Part 2: Some Practical Advice on Book Reading 

7. Read with Resolve – Six Priorities that Decide What Books I Read (and Don’t Read) 

8. How to Read a Book – 20 Tips and Tricks for Reading Nonfiction Books 

9. Literature is Life – Tapping into the Benefits of Fiction Literature 

10. Too Busy to Read – Six Ways to Find (and Protect) the Time You Need to Read Books 

11. Driven to Distraction – How Internet Habits Cripple Book Reading 

12. Marginalia – The Fine Art of Defacing Books With Pencils, Pens, and Highlighters 

13. Reading Together – Building Community One Book at a Time

14. Raising Readers – How Parents and Pastors Can Ignite in Others 

15. Happily Ever After – Five Marks of a Healthy Book Reader 



Tony Reinke is a former journalist now serving as a theological researcher, writer, and blogger. He lives in Maryland with his wife and three children.



“I read many books, but seldom do I enjoy one more than I did Tony Reinke’s Lit!. Many of my greatest childhood adventures, and much of my growth after I was converted as a teenager, came through reading imagination-expanding and life-changing books. Tony’s writing is thoughtful, perceptive, concise, and God-honoring. He upholds biblical authority, and offers helpful guidance, while allowing for a range of tastes. Lit! rings true to my own lifetime of reading experience. As a reader and writer of both nonfiction and fiction, I appreciate the breadth of Tony’s treatment, which includes a variety of genres. For book lovers, this is a treasure and delight. For those who aren’t book lovers, it makes a great case for becoming one.” - Randy Alcorn, founder, Eternal Perspective Ministries; author, If God is Good and Heaven

“If you don’t read books as both a discipline and a delight, then you should; and if you need help here, as in truth all of us do, more or less, then this is the book for you. Don’t miss it!” - J. I. Packer, Board of Governors' Professor of Theology, Regent College

“There is so much to commend about this book that it is hard to know where to start. The most obvious virtue of the book is its scope. On the subject of reading, Reinke covers every possible topic. Each topic, in turn, is broken into all of its important subpoints. With a lesser writer, this could produce a tedious book, but the opposite is true of this book. Reinke says just enough, but not too much. The effect is like seeing a prism turned in the light. There is never a dull moment in this book. Once I sensed that Reinke was going to cover all the important topics, and with unfailing good sense and Christian insight, I could hardly put the book down. What will Reinke say about THAT topic? I found myself asking. But to add yet another twist, Reinke has read so widely in scholarly and religious sources that I do not hesitate to call the book a triumph of scholarship. Reinke writes with an infectious and winsome enthusiasm. It is hard to imagine a reader of this book who would not catch the spark for reading after encountering Reinke's excitement about reading and his carefully reasoned defense of it.” - Leland Ryken, professor of English, Wheaton College; author, The ESV and the English Bible Legacy