The most recommended books about agnosticism

Who picked these books? Meet our 11 experts.

11 authors created a book list connected to agnosticism, and here are their favorite agnosticism books.
Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

What type of agnosticism book?

Loading...

Book cover of A Principle of Recovery: An Unconventional Journey Through the Twelve Steps

Deb Palmer Author Of In Spite Of Us: A Love Story about Second Chances

From my list on portraying addiction and family dysfunction.

Who am I?

I can say in truth and with humor, that I’m overqualified on this topic. My parents are both alcoholics, I followed suit along with two siblings and married into the club, not once but twice. Thank God my second marriage was to a recovering alcoholic. Today I’m approaching 30 years of sobriety while hubby remains in the lead with 34 years. Knowing what it’s like to live with another alcoholic, practice the art yourself and find a way through it, should be the equivalent of a doctorate on addiction. I know the pain, denial, struggle, and all the lies. Most importantly, I have the heart to help others who, like myself, march on the front line of this battle.

Deb's book list on portraying addiction and family dysfunction

Deb Palmer Why did Deb love this book?

I recommend this book because it pulls no punches. It’s not easy to get sober, and it’s not glamorous. Jack Grisham--lead singer of the punk band T.S.O.L., has 33 years of sobriety at the time of this writing. He shares that journey honestly with a heart for those needing to hear of his struggles. It’s a good read that teaches what’s behind the 12 steps of recovery. 

By Jack Grisham,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Principle of Recovery as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A guided journey through the 12 Step process. A Principle of Recovery is a look at sobriety through the eyes and heart of Jack Grisham--lead singer of the punk band T.S.O.L., and the author of 'An American Demon'. Grisham has been clean and sober since January 8th, 1989. This book cuts through the myths and misconceptions of what it is to live in recovery and gives us a glimpse into the freedom that being sober can bring. An agnostic libertarian Grisham challenges some of the "cult" like practices in today's groups and encourages you to think for yourself, live without…


Book cover of Charles Fort: The Man Who Invented the Supernatural

Nicole Cushing Author Of Mothwoman

From my list on paranormal investigation.

Who am I?

I’m a weirdo, so of course I’m attracted to the idea that the universe may be weird, too. I like the idea that the universe is able to hold itself together ninety-nine percent of the time, but every once in a while it just has to let its freak flag fly. Even if paranormal experiences are nothing more than waking dreams, they may still be worth our attention (the same as any dream). Even if such experiences aren’t objectively “real”, they’re subjectively fascinating. I love exploring the line between reality and unreality. Like Fort, I don’t believe it to be as cut and dry as mainstream science would have us believe.

Nicole's book list on paranormal investigation

Nicole Cushing Why did Nicole love this book?

Charles Fort was the o.g. paranormal investigator. One hundred years ago, he made a sweeping study of all the weird stuff mainstream science refuses to examine. Even now we use the word “Fortean” to describe the study of ghosts, bigfoot, ufos, ESP, etc. Steinmeyer’s biography reveals the complicated man behind the adjective. 

Was Fort a kook? Not really. Steinmeyer reveals him to be more of a gadfly, playfully thumbing his nose at science but never investing too much belief in his own eccentric theories, either. For Fort, the real and the unreal were two sides of the same coin. His quarrel was with those who insisted the quarter only had heads and refused to investigate the possible existence of tails.

By Jim Steinmeyer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Charles Fort as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'I am the first disciple of Charles Fort. Henceforth I am a Fortean'

Since Ben Hecht wrote this line in reviewing The Book of The Damned in 1919, Charles Fort - whose very name spawned an adjective, Fortean, defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as 'relating to or denoting paranormal phenomena' - has so divided opinion that to Theodore Dreiser he was "the most fascinating literary figure since Poe;" to The New York Times he was "the enfant terrible of science;" and to HG Wells he was "one of the most damnable bores who ever cut scraps from out of…


Book cover of When God is Gone, Everything is Holy: The Making of a Religious Naturalist

Ursula Goodenough Author Of The Sacred Depths of Nature: How Life Has Emerged and Evolved

From my list on an ecospiritual orientation.

Who am I?

I’m working with others to develop what we call a religious naturalist orientation or an ecospiritual orientation, and these books have deeply guided my path and inspired the writing of my own book. 

Ursula's book list on an ecospiritual orientation

Ursula Goodenough Why did Ursula love this book?

Astronomer Chet Raymo wrote a weekly column for the Boston Globe called Science Musings, and is a masterful storyteller and delightful human being.

Here are some quotes about the nature of scientific inquiry. “Delight in the unexpected is part of the lifeblood of science. Almost alone among belief systems, science welcomes the disturbingly new.” “Science is a spider’s web. Confidence in any one strand of the web is maintained by the tension and resiliency of the entire web.” “Science, like the play of children, satisfies a deep-seated need for escape from the boredom of fixity and the trauma of chaos.”

By Chet Raymo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked When God is Gone, Everything is Holy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In what he describes as a "late-life credo," renowned science writer Chet Raymo narrates his half-century journey from the traditional Catholicism of his youth to his present perspective as a "Catholic agnostic." As a scientist, Raymo holds to the skepticism that accepts only verifiable answers, but as a "religious naturalist," he never ceases his pursuit of "the beautiful and terrible mystery that soaks creation." Raymo assembles a stunning array of scientists, philosophers, mystics, and poets who help him discover "glimmers of the Absolute in every particular." Whether exploring the connection of the human body to the stars or the meaning…


Book cover of The Pilgrim's Progress

Sylvia Kelso Author Of Everran's Bane

From my list on journeys in them.

Who am I?

As a child, I wanted to be either a chook (chicken) farmer or an archaeologist. In high school, my Latin teacher gave me a copy of The Hobbit and changed my passion to travel, which, for Australians, mostly means, Overseas. In second year University, The Lord of the Rings cemented that longing, and I have "travelled" Overseas almost annually ever since. But a long research trip for a historical novel taught me that the best travel is a journey: travel with a purpose. And whether or not I'm on a plane, train, bus, or foot myself, some of my favourite reading has always been books with journeys at their heart. 

Sylvia's book list on journeys in them

Sylvia Kelso Why did Sylvia love this book?

From multi-culture epic to English 17th Century Christian allegory, from the breadth of the Mediterranean, gods, and giants, to a foot journey down a strait path to a distant wicket gate. I'm at best agnostic; like Tolkien, I don't care for allegory, and Bunyan's is rather simplistic in comparison to its masterful use in Piers Plowman, the great medieval poem. Yet years after I met them, Christian and his companion Valiant-for-Truth linger in memory. And however unassuming, Bunyan's language can suddenly take flight: as when Valiant-for-Truth dies – allegorically, crosses the river of Jordan – and, "All the trumpets sounded for him on the other side."

By John Bunyan, Tom Griffith (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Pilgrim's Progress as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With an Introduction by Professor Stuart Sim.

John Bunyan was variously a tinker, soldier, Baptist minister, prisoner and writer of outstanding narrative genius which reached its apotheosis in this, his greatest work. It is an allegory of the Christian life of true brilliance and is presented as a dream which describes the pilgrimage of the hero - Christian - from the City of Destruction via the Slough of Despond, the Hill of Difficulty, the Valley of the Shadow of Death and Vanity Fair over the River of the Water of Life and into the Celestial City.

The Pilgrim's Progress has…


Book cover of Comedy Sex God

Elizabeth Kendig Author Of Chase You

From my list on spirituality that take the weird out of the woo.

Who am I?

Despite a successful editorial career and thriving beauty business, in my 30s I remained plagued by a depression and crippling perfectionism. What began as a self-help bender and journalistic endeavor to explore every holistic experience I could get my hands on became a way of life—and saved my life. When my spiritual mentor Monica Lawson introduced me to the Other Side and how to work with them to find clarity and purpose, it clicked: we could teach others to do the same. Our mission is to take the weird out of the woo and make spirituality accessible for everyone. It’s your birthright to chase you. We’re simply here to show you the way.  

Elizabeth's book list on spirituality that take the weird out of the woo

Elizabeth Kendig Why did Elizabeth love this book?

In this comedic yet deeply personal account of his tumultuous spiritual journey, Holmes shares his path from dogmatic religious upbringing to painful agnostic skepticism as a young adult to ultimately discovering a powerful connection with himself and the unknown with levity and relatability. That my husband and brother both devoured this book—and compared notes on it—gives me hope that we have entered a cultural moment when open spiritual discourse and examination by and among men is not only underway but being met with a standing ovation.

By Pete Holmes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Comedy Sex God as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Part autobiography, part philosophical inquiry, and part spiritual quest, Comedy Sex God is a hilarious, profound, and enlightening romp around the fertile mind of stand-up stand-out, podcast king, and HBO superstar Pete Holmes.

Pete Holmes is a sold-out-every-night stand-up comedian with two HBO specials and the host of the hugely successful podcast You Made It Weird, and he was the creator-star of the hit HBO show Crashing. But it wasn't always roses for Pete. Growing up, Pete was raised an evangelical Christian, but his religion taught him that being "bad"-smoking, drinking, having doubts or premarital sex-would get him sent to…


Book cover of Sadhguru: More Than A Life

Mike Russell Author Of Strange Concentrate

From Mike's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Author Artist Seeker Lover of the surreal Lover of mystery and wonder

Mike's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Mike Russell Why did Mike love this book?

This is a book for anyone wanting to know more about Sadhguru, a contemporary mystic.

Anyone who has read any of my books will know I am someone who is searching for more to life than the material and mental prisons our society offers. Sadhguru is someone who has no prisons and has dedicated his life to destroying everyone else’s. No beliefs, no philosophy, no religion, just exploration of life…

This book is essentially a biography; for a more practical book check out Inner Engineering: A Yogi's Guide to Joy by Sadhguru. You will be amazed.

By Arundhathi Subramaniam,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sadhguru as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sadhguru: More than a Life is an extraordinary story of Sadhguru, a young agnostic who turned yogi and a spiritual guru for millions of people all around the world. The author attempts to re-create the life of an exceptional man as he combines rationality with mysticism and ancient wisdom with contemporary and modern outlook.



In Sadhguru: More Than a Life, the author writes about the early life of Sadhguru and his journey from being a boisterous prankster to becoming the spiritual guide for millions around the world. The author draws from her extended conversations with Sadhguru and interviews with fellow…


Book cover of Answering the Objections of Atheists, Agnostics, & Skeptics

Roxane Lapa Author Of Answering The Atheist: Good Questions Deserve Straight Answers

From my list on Christian apologetics.

Who am I?

I’ve been a Christian for 30+ years, and have had many questions about the Bible and theology. In order to answer my own questions, I’ve consumed scores of apologetics books, articles, videos, and podcasts, as well as studied the Bible itself, with lexicons and commentaries.

Roxane's book list on Christian apologetics

Roxane Lapa Why did Roxane love this book?

This is a book aimed at Christians and regards arguments that sceptics tend to raise.  This was a great book. It wasn’t an easy read, or particularly well ordered, but it had a lot of meat and a few amazing nuggets.

By Ron Rhodes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Answering the Objections of Atheists, Agnostics, & Skeptics as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Many arguments from atheists, agnostics, and skeptics are difficult, or at least intimidating, for most Christians to answer. With clear reasoning and understandable language Ron Rhodes provides readers with the explanations and scriptural background they need to respond to common arguments against faith including:

There is no such thing as absolute truth. Genesis is a myth, not a scientific account. A loving God cannot exist--there is too much evil and suffering. If God created all things, how did He create Himself? Sin is an outdated concept.

With this resource, Christians will be able to confidently respond to logical arguments against…


Book cover of Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith of a Sinner & Saint

Martin J. Lohrmann Author Of Stories from Global Lutheranism

From my list on Lutherans and social change.

Who am I?

When I was going to church as a kid, I noticed there were a lot of things about faith that were really important to people but that they rarely talked about. In my work as a pastor, professor, and church historian, I’ve tried to identify and name those core values, so that we can learn from one another, share our beliefs in meaningful and respectful ways, and grow together as we explore life’s big questions and practice living out our beliefs in the here and now.

Martin's book list on Lutherans and social change

Martin J. Lohrmann Why did Martin love this book?

Founder of a church called House for All Sinners and Saints in Denver, Colorado, Nadia Bolz-Weber describes her path from a Fundamentalist upbringing to agnostic comedian to Lutheran pastor. Walking with people who had long been forgotten, dismissed, or condemned by mainstream American Christianity, Bolz-Weber has brought the traditional Reformation message of God’s unconditional love to life in new ways. With stories that range from vulnerable to hilarious, this book is fun to read and full of refreshing insights about God, church, hospitality, and grace.

By Nadia Bolz-Weber,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pastrix as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Seven years on from its original publication, Pastrix remains bracing and beautiful. Nadia's bold vulnerability and tender heart are timeless gifts. And the words she has added to this edition remind me: We need her call to tender grace and a loving, forgiving God now more than ever."
-- Jeff Chu, Author of Does Jesus Really Love Me?

Pastrix: a derogatory term used by Christians who refuse to recognize female pastors.

Heavily tattooed and foul-mouthed, Nadia Bolz-Weber, a former stand-up comic, sure as hell didn't consider herself to be religious-leader material-until the day she ended up leading a friend's funeral…


Book cover of The Atheist Who Didn't Exist Or: the Dreadful Consequences of Bad Arguments

Roxane Lapa Author Of Answering The Atheist: Good Questions Deserve Straight Answers

From my list on Christian apologetics.

Who am I?

I’ve been a Christian for 30+ years, and have had many questions about the Bible and theology. In order to answer my own questions, I’ve consumed scores of apologetics books, articles, videos, and podcasts, as well as studied the Bible itself, with lexicons and commentaries.

Roxane's book list on Christian apologetics

Roxane Lapa Why did Roxane love this book?

Andy Bannister has written this book in response to popular one-liners by new atheists, particularly Dawkins. Tired retorts comparing God to Santa Claus and the tooth fairy are hilariously dealt with by the author's dry British humour. I had a good couple of chuckles in this book. I particularly loved his imaginary friend who claimed he stole the Venus di Milo's arm, and also how he sarcastically puts trademark symbols on the words 'Science' and 'Reason'. Still, I think he does a good job of preventing his teasing from becoming a poo-flinging contest. Such a talented writer - loved this book!

By Andy Bannister,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Atheist Who Didn't Exist Or as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the last decade, atheism has leapt from obscurity to the front pages: producing best-selling books, making movies, and plastering adverts on the side of buses. There's an energy and a confidence to contemporary atheism: many people now assume that a godless scepticism is the default position, indeed the only position for anybody wishing to appear educated, contemporary, and urbane. Atheism is hip, religion is boring. Yet when one pokes at popular atheism, many of the arguments used to prop it up quickly unravel. The Atheist Who Didn't Exist is designed to expose some of the loose threads on the…


Book cover of Lives of Girls and Women

William Illsey Atkinson Author Of Sun's Strong Immortality

From my list on well-written slam-bang adventures.

Who am I?

I had a rotten childhood. Stuck in bed with asthma, I couldn’t do sports; but I could roam space and time with books, especially science fiction. Yet when I tried to re-read my beloved sci-fi titles as an adult, I got a shock. The books with sound science had terrible writing; the well-written books were full of scientific schlock. I realized that if I wanted sci-fi that was both technically astute and rewarding to read, I’d have to write it myself. And so I did.

William's book list on well-written slam-bang adventures

William Illsey Atkinson Why did William love this book?

Great adventure doesn’t always mean jungles, star-wastes, or derring-do. The human heart – what one poet called "the wilderness behind the eyes" – can be as electrifying as any firefight. In this tradition, Alice Munro won the 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature. Lives of Girls and Women is her second novel, and like all great adventure stories will tell you more about yourself than you ever suspected. As Sir Walter Scott said of Jane Austen: "That young lady has a talent for describing the involvements and feelings and characters of ordinary life."

By Alice Munro,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Lives of Girls and Women as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Through the women and men she encounters, Del becomes aware of her own potential and the excitement of an unknown independence. Alice Munro's previous books include "Dance of the Happy Shades" and "The Beggar Maid", which was nominated for the 1980 Booker Prize.