The most recommended books about the Bible

Who picked these books? Meet our 291 experts.

291 authors created a book list connected to the Bible, and here are their favorite Bible books.
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Book cover of The House Plant Expert

Catherine Horwood Author Of Potted History: How Houseplants Took Over Our Homes

From my list on keeping your houseplants alive.

Why am I passionate about this?

I remember my first ever houseplant—doesn’t everyone? It was a spider plant, just a small one grown as an offset from my mother’s vast ‘mother’ plant. Yestwo mothers! The plant and my green-fingered mother got me hooked on houseplants. As a social historian, I’ve written about all things to do with the homeclothes, gardens, even gardeners themselves but houseplants? Why was there no social history of plants in the home? Where did that spider plant come from? And when? The answer is Japan in the late 18th century. But the truth is that plants have been brought into homes for centuries and their stories are fascinating. 

Catherine's book list on keeping your houseplants alive

Catherine Horwood Why did Catherine love this book?

It is rumoured that this book has, at times, been the world’s best-selling non-fiction book after The Biblequite a claim. Indisputable is that this book and its many reprints and updates remain for several generations, the one essential read for houseplant help. It was written by a scientist who worked for one of the world’s leading houseplant liquid feed after a radio appearance led to the company receiving thousands of letters asking for houseplant advice. Hessayon’s simple formula of basic photographs and short text has been much copied but never bettered.

By D. G. Hessayon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The House Plant Expert as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A guide to choosing and caring for indoor plants. This aims to present information on a variety of plants in an easy-to-follow format.

Book cover of The Art of the Checkmate

Charles Hertan Author Of Forcing Chess Moves: The Key to Better Calculation

From my list on understanding and playing better chess enjoyably.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a nerdy kid growing up in New York in the 1970s, I got swept up in the “Fischer Boom” of 1972 when Bobby Fischer became the first official American World Champion, and chess clubs and tournaments sprouted up around the country. I persevered to become one of the top 30-ranked players. I’ve coached chess since my teens, with students ranging from ages 3 to 95. Not until my 40’s did I discover that I had perhaps an even greater talent and passion for writing. My first book Forcing Chess Moves presented a novel and challenging approach to how to think ahead in chess, and understand human biases which can blind us to winning ideas.

Charles' book list on understanding and playing better chess enjoyably

Charles Hertan Why did Charles love this book?

One thing that separates chess from all other games is the concept of checkmate. You’ve heard the word a million times, but what is it exactly? You’re probably thinking “Capturing the Enemy King”, but that would be incorrect. Actually it means threatening to capture the enemy King, while denying him any means of escape. I was already an experienced player when I read this book, but it was an “aha” moment. There are recurring checkmating patterns that are far from obvious to beginners; but once you learn to recognize them, you become a better player and enhance your appreciation for the beauty of chess.

By Georges Renaud, Victor Kahn, W. J. Taylor

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Art of the Checkmate as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The art of the checkmate has at last been provided with a scientific foundation." — Chicago Sunday Tribune
One of the most difficult situations in chess is seeing potential mates in the near future. All players, even grandmasters and champions, have missed such mates in actual play, to their chagrin and the bystanders' delight, for all too often it is easier to play for momentary advantage than to force a mate.
This book by two former national chess champions of France provides a rational classification of mating situations, and shows how each possible type of mate has emerged with its…

Book cover of Clinging: The Experience of Prayer

Jerry Windley-Daoust Author Of Imagine You Walked with Jesus: A Guide to Ignatian Contemplative Prayer

From my list on Christian prayer for beginners.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sometimes I wonder how I ended up writing so many books about spirituality and religion. I started out in journalism, after all, driven by an endless curiosity about people and the planet. I wanted to tell all the untold stories! Funny thing, chasing those stories deeper and deeper eventually led me to write about spirituality, and ultimately, prayer. I picked up an MA in pastoral ministry, spent a few years editing high school religion textbooks for Saint Mary’s Press, and then started writing my own books. Most of what I write is aimed at helping beginners learn to pray, which is why I made this list.

Jerry's book list on Christian prayer for beginners

Jerry Windley-Daoust Why did Jerry love this book?

This little book is my first love, the one that I revisit every few years. Griffin calls it an experiment because rather than describing a particular method of prayer, she sets out to paint a picture of what prayer is like, using the palette of her own experience, wise words from Scripture, and the long tradition of Christian mysticism. The resulting work is less like a map or a manual than the story of a single traveler exploring the far reaches of the known world; and in telling that story, she blazes a path for the rest of us. The book is only available in print, which is unfortunate for those of us who prefer ebooks; on my bookshelf, it sits right next to all the spiritual classics.

By Emilie Griffin,

Why should I read it?

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

Book cover of Dinosaurs

Chuck Augello Author Of The Revolving Heart

From Chuck's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Wildlife enthusiast Vonnegutian All around human being

Chuck's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Chuck Augello Why did Chuck love this book?

I’ve always been drawn to lonely characters.

Gil, the protagonist of Dinosaurs, has two good friends and a live-in partner, but one feels his essential aloneness, and when his girlfriend suddenly abandons him, he leaves home in New York and walks to Arizona. After his arrival, a family moves into the glass-walled house next door and Gil soon becomes enmeshed in their lives.

This might seem far-fetched, but Millet captures the reader through close observation and empathy for her characters. The friendship between Gil and Tom, his adolescent neighbor, is the most surprising fictional friendship I’ve read in years.

The need for community and connection in a precarious world is the underlying theme, and I left Dinosaurs feeling more hopeful than I had before.

By Lydia Millet,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Over twelve novels and two collections Lydia Millet has emerged as a major American novelist, writing vividly about the ties between people and other animals and the crisis of extinction. Her exquisite new novel, the first since A Children's Bible (ISBN 978 0 393 86738 1) ("a blistering little classic"-Ron Charles, Washington Post), tells the story of an Arizona man's relationship with the family next door, whose house has one wall made entirely out of glass.

The story delivers attraction and love, friendship and grief. But Millet also evokes the uncanny. Through close observation of human and animal life in…

Book cover of The Art of Time in Memoir: Then, Again

Beth Kephart Author Of We Are the Words: The Master Memoir Class

From my list on for truth wranglers.

Why am I passionate about this?

The first memoir I ever read—Road Song by Natalie Kusz—pierced me in ways I did not know were possible. Kusz had written, in this elegantly crafted book, of an Alaskan childhood, a life-changing accident, early motherhood, and family love. She had written, I mean to say, of transcending truths. I have spent much of my life ever since deconstructing the ways in which true stories get told, and writing them myself. I’ve taught memoir to five-year-olds, Ivy League students, master’s level writers, and retirees. I co-founded Juncture Workshops, write a monthly newsletter on the form, and today create blank books into which other writers might begin to tell their stories.

Beth's book list on for truth wranglers

Beth Kephart Why did Beth love this book?

“One of the first discoveries I made when I began to return in a reflective way to earlier parts of my life was that there was often very little connection between events that by rights ought to be capitalized—important trips, moves, friendships, deaths—and the experiences that had in fact left the most vivid deposit in memory,” Birkerts writes in this little book that packs a punch. Focusing on Coming-of-Age Stories, Fathers and Sons, Mothers and Daughters, Trauma and Memory, Birkerts deconstructs well-loved texts to teach us how their writers chose to manage time.

By Sven Birkerts,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Art of Time in Memoir as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Memoir is, for better and often for worse, the genre of our times,' Birkerts writes. This piece of elegant literary criticism seeks to understand what makes some memoirs memorable and others self-serving. Birkerts argues that the memoirists strategies for presenting the subjective experience of time reveal the power and resonance of the writer's life. By examining Virginia Woolf's A Sketch of the Past, and Mary Karr's The Liars' Club, Birkerts describes the memoirists essential art of assembling patterns of meaning.'

Book cover of Philology: The Forgotten Origins of the Modern Humanities

David N. Livingstone Author Of The Empire of Climate: A History of an Idea

From my list on the history of ideas.

Why am I passionate about this?

My love for ideas and their history was born when I was still in high school. It was my old English teacher who first opened up the power of ideas in literature to change the world. I’m pretty sure he loved Eleanor Roosevelt’s comment: “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” Whether or not that’s true, my taste was further sharpened when I took a two-year course on the history of thought about nature and culture as an undergraduate student. I was captivated. 

David's book list on the history of ideas

David N. Livingstone Why did David love this book?

My admiration for this book knows no limits. Initially, I was put off by the title, but the subtitle says it all: The Forgotten Origins of the Modern Humanities. I know of no other book that tells the remarkable story of the very idea that there’s something called ‘the humanities’ and how it emerged as a suite of disciplines in modern education.

In a book of this scope and scale, I find it stunning that the author seems to have included a witticism on every other page! 

By James Turner,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Many today do not recognize the word, but "philology" was for centuries nearly synonymous with humanistic intellectual life, encompassing not only the study of Greek and Roman literature and the Bible but also all other studies of language and literature, as well as history, culture, art, and more. In short, philology was the queen of the human sciences. How did it become little more than an archaic word? In Philology, the first history of Western humanistic learning as a connected whole ever published in English, James Turner tells the fascinating, forgotten story of how the study of languages and texts…

Book cover of The Nowhere Thief

Jay Miles Author Of The Mariverse: Guardians

From my list on the multiverse that dives through worlds beyond worlds.

Why am I passionate about this?

The Multiverse had been my deepest passion of interest for a long time. Experiencing crossover stories in various mediums, both official and fan-made, especially fan-made. To see how two different worlds would meet. I spent hours reading fanfictions involving crossovers, as well as conjuring up my own. I considered the multiverse as a grand bedrock to create any story, hence why I wrote The Mariverse, followed by The Mariverse: Guardians, to create my own bedrock for my writing career.

Jay's book list on the multiverse that dives through worlds beyond worlds

Jay Miles Why did Jay love this book?

Though it never mentions the word ‘multiverse’, it has many aspects of a story about travelling through worlds beyond worlds, going somewhere from nowhere, taking things that don’t exist in another place.

I found this book interesting because it includes a mystery, as the protagonist goes through her journey, she uncovers mysteries and hidden truths about her abilities.

A different concept of multiverse travelling, as well as worlds that are aware of each other, it was still an interesting read that leaves a satisfying conclusion.

By Alice M. Ross,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Nowhere Thief as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

A mind-bending multiverse adventure about theft, family, and finding your home.

Twelve-year-old Elsbeth has an extraordinary power: she can travel to parallel worlds and bring objects back with her. But as freak weather events become more frequent and a strange boy, Idris, starts to turn up everywhere she travels, she has to ask herself: does her gift come with a price?

Fans of Christopher Edge, Ross Welford and Jessica Townsend will love this fast-paced story and mind-blowing plot! Perfect for readers aged 9 and up.

Book cover of NKJV Study Bible

Scott LaPierre Author Of Your Marriage God's Way: A Biblical Guide to a Christ-Centered Relationship

From my list on Bible commentaries for pastors and teachers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the teaching pastor of Woodland Christian Church. I have been in ministry since 2007, preaching God’s Word an average of 1 to 3 times weekly. Because my ministry focuses on teaching and preaching, I study God’s Word for 20 to 30 hours per week. I have used numerous commentaries over the years and settled on these as the best one-volume commentaries.

Scott's book list on Bible commentaries for pastors and teachers

Scott LaPierre Why did Scott love this book?

The Thomas Nelson Study Bible is my second favorite commentary to use. It shares many similarities with The MacArthur Study Bible. There are helpful charts and maps. The commentary is clear and understandable. The cross-references are helpful as are the other study tools. The images and charts are done wonderfully. There are over 1,000 articles and notes spread through the commentary, which provide a greater understanding of certain passages and topics. Again there are also book introductions and the outlines can be very helpful. The word studies, the Strong’s numbers in case you want to do further study. The indexes and concordances at the back are helpful and easy to use. One point to consider is while John MacArthur’s commentary is Calvinistic, The Thomas Nelson Study Bible doesn’t seem to lean toward Calvinism or Arminianism, probably to reach multiple denominations.

By Thomas Nelson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The full text of the trustworthy New King James Version with robust study notes, vibrant full-color images, and dozens of study resources to help you grow deeper in your faith.

With more than 2 million copies sold, it's no secret that The King James Study Bible, Full Color Edition is a reliable guide for your journey into God's Word. This beautiful full-color Bible provides a complete resource for study, including over 1 million words of custom content contributed by top evangelical scholars. Over 1,000 articles, notes, word studies, photos, illustrations, maps, and other tools, combined with the accuracy and clarity…

Book cover of The Lost Episodes of Revie Bryson

Barbara Shoup Author Of Looking for Jack Kerouac

From my list on to remember what it was really like to be young.

Why am I passionate about this?

When people find out I write YA novels, they sometimes ask, “How do you remember what it was like to be that age?” I want to respond, “How do you forget?” I’m still—many years past my own adolescence and after 25 years of teaching teenagers—trying to figure out how high school works. I’m pretty sure I won’t find a satisfying answer, but I hope that, if I keep asking the question (actually, I can’t help asking it), I’ll write some YA books that make kids feel a little less alone. Who am I? Clearly, a person who hopes it’s never too late to be popular in high school.

Barbara's book list on to remember what it was really like to be young

Barbara Shoup Why did Barbara love this book?

The Lost Episodes of Revie Bryson is another book that will make you laugh and cry. What I love most about it is its wondering tone which makes me feel like I’m trying to figure out twelve-year-old Revie Bryson’s world right along with him. Why did his mother make up lost episodes of the Bible that made him feel like he just might be the second coming, why did she leave him and his dad in Paris, Indiana to pursue her dreams of Hollywood—and where is God, anyway? Aren’t you supposed to be able to count on Him to make things right? 

By Bryan Furuness,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Lost Episodes of Revie Bryson as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Revie becomes convinced he is the second coming of Christ. But when his mother runs away to Hollywood, Revie's faith is shaken.

Book cover of The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible

Corinne Maier Author Of The Conquest of the Red Man

From my list on tongue-in-cheek about social classes and clashes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a french writer, I like to write satires and tongue-in-cheek books about society. Work, children, France, social classes... When you find the right angle almost everything can be funny. With my writing I want to entertain, but give the reader something to think about. I hope this list will make you laugh as much I did. 

Corinne's book list on tongue-in-cheek about social classes and clashes

Corinne Maier Why did Corinne love this book?

A. J. Jacobs, a journalist, decides to read the Bible and try to follow it literally for a whole year, to the point of eating locusts, throwing small pebbles at couples he suspects of adultery, slaying idolatry, and speaking the naked truth… Struggling to follow archaic rules, he lives a disconcerting experience under the perplexed eyes of his family and becomes quickly out of step with the present time. The Year of Living Biblically depicts a clash of worlds with a caustic humor and I’ve burst out laughing a couple of times. I recommend it to believers and non-believers, both will be amused by this witty book that gives us food for thought.

By A.J. Jacobs,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Year of Living Biblically as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the bestselling author of The Know-It-All comes a fascinating and timely exploration of religion and the Bible.

Raised in a secular family but increasingly interested in the relevance of faith in our modern world, A.J. Jacobs decides to dive in headfirst and attempt to obey the Bible as literally as possible for one full year. He vows to follow the Ten Commandments. To be fruitful and multiply. To love his neighbor. But also to obey the hundreds of less publicized rules: to avoid wearing clothes made of mixed fibers; to play a ten-string harp; to stone adulterers.

The resulting…