American Crucifixion, by Alex Beam

There are no heroes in Alex Beam’s tale of the killing of Mormon founder Joseph Smith.

An Introduction to Design Arguments, by Benjamin C. Jantzen

Many people have an intuition that the natural world shows purpose, order, or providence. Benjamin Jantzen does a marvelous job analyzing the attempts to turn that intuition into arguments.

The Rebirthing of God, by John Philip Newell

For nonbelievers, John Philip Newell's new book might serve as an introduction to Christianity at its mildest and least challenging.

We Know How This Ends, by Bruce H. Kramer with Cathy Wurzer

Bruce Kramer was a dean and professor at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, a passionate lover of music, and part-time choir director at his Methodist church. In 2010, at age 54, he received a diagnosis of ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Someone put Cathy Wurzer from Minne­sota Public Radio’s Morning Edition program in touch with him.

Faith in ferment

Whatever its connotations, medieval represents half the Christian story to date. Kevin Madigan provides an excellent look at these long centuries.