Reading is an odd thing. If it is a delight, as it clearly should be, then reading a book that is about reading should be like . . . eating ice cream that is about ice cream. Except that it is not like that. The failure of that metaphor is probably one of those imponderables, like why your right hand is your left hand in the mirror, but your feet are not up where your head is, and vice versa.
But still, reading about reading while you are reading is a delight. I got Tony Reinke’s book Lit! when it first came out, but for various reasons didn’t get to it until now. I had the book over half done, then had the pleasure of meeting Tony at the DG conference, and, as it happened, finished the book on the flight home. That was another fun thing — meeting the author didn’t make me want to throw the book away.
This is a great book on the reading life, especially for those young believers who are wanting to establish the right kind of reading rhythms in their lives. As Tony explains in detail, a lot of reading territory can be covered in the midst of normal life.
One of the worst things that can happen to a Christian is the practice of reading books about the Bible, doing so in a way that squeezes out actual Bible reading. Tony begins by establishing the foundational importance of ongoing and regular reading in Scripture, and how to do this in a way that establishes an intact biblical worldview — which is the safety harness you will need if you turn to read widely among all the other available books. And this would include books by believers as well as unbelievers.
Having established a foundational theology of reading, Tony then moves into a host of practical questions. How can you find time to read? What sorts of books should be read at different times? How can you bring up your children to love books? How is it appropriate to mark up your books? How can you form a reading group, and should you? His advice in all these and other areas obviously arises out of long experience, and there is a wealth of good information here.
For those parents who are homeschooling, this would be a particularly good book to get. Reading — especially when there is a lot of it going on — is too important an activity to be left to develop a case of the haphazards.