In his previous books Scott Sanders did much to deepen the public conversation about the sources and patterns that connect broken communities, damaged ecosystems and suffering individuals, and about what it will take to heal and renew things.

The Year of Magical Thinking

In this award-winning memoir, Joan Didion, a premier observer of contemporary life, witnesses death. It walks into her New York apartment on December 30, 2003, approaches the dinner table and claims her husband of 40 years, John Gregory Dunne, who falls dead of a heart attack. Didion presents with dry clarity what happens in the year after that.


This is the fourth collection of poetry published by Mary Karr, who also authored The Liars’ Club, her best-selling memoir. Formerly an “undiluted agnostic,” she converted to Catholicism in 1996. In an afterword Karr says that what drew her to the Catholic faith is its carnality.

Beware of the scribes

Bart Ehrman’s Misquoting Jesus has caused something of a sensation. This is no small achievement for an introduction to New Testament textual criticism, a field known for writing that is dry and inaccessible to non-specialists.

Where God Was Born

Near the end of Where God Was Born, Bruce Feiler and his wife, Linda, are sitting in an obliterated Jewish cemetery in Hamadan, Iran, reading to each other from the book of Esther.