This week the folks at The Broke And The Bookish have challenged bloggers to list their Top 10 Books STILL on The Shelf Long after You Started Blogging. So, do I pick them by genre, age, color of cover? I have a serious problem — 10 just isn’t enough! I decided to go shelf by shelf (I arrange by genre) and pick out the first 10. I didn’t get very far — just 1 shelf (Biblical fiction). As my dear MIL would say Oh, me! I’ll save the rest for a Freebie or Rewind week. To find out what other bloggers have on their TBR shelves, click HERE.
Top 10 Books STILL on My Bookshelves (After 7 Years!)
Some of the books on my list are those I thought my book club would love. Others are books by favorite authors. Some are classics. And others just called my name when I was in the bookstore.
Ben Hur by Lew Wallace — Ben-Hur is the remarkable saga of betrayal, revenge, and redemption, played out in the bloodstained arenas of ancient Rome. Framed for attempting to murder a Roman official, Ben-Hur is robbed of his freedom, family, and fortune. Condemned to death as a galley slave, he lives only to avenge himself against the Roman tribune Messala—the boyhood friend who betrayed him.
Ben-Hur vividly recreates the sweep of Imperial Rome — from a thrilling sea battle, to the famous chariot race, to the agony of the Crucifixion. It is the moving, personal tale of the prince who became a slave and then — through a unique twist of fate — was able to fight his way back to the free world as a champion gladiator.
Written by the territorial governor of New Mexico, Ben-Hur was an immediate bestseller upon its release in 1880 — selling over two million copies — and continues to be an enduring classic.
The Big Fisherman by Lloyd C. Douglas — The story traces Peter’s journey from self-sufficient fisherman to his dependency on a risen Christ. It also presents another story of redemption and forgiveness, as he takes in a young Arab/Jewish girl, Fara. As they both learn of Jesus, it changes their lives.
The young Fara discovers that she is the daughter of Herod Antipas who married and shortly discarded her Arab mother Arnon in favor of Herodias. Her half Arab ancestry makes her marriage to the future King Deran impossible. Disguised as a boy Fara goes to Galilee to assassinate Herod in revenge, though Herod has survived eight previous assassination attempts from the Arabs who are described as people with a short temper and a long memory. She is followed by Voldi, an Arab prince who wishes to marry her and take her back home, however Voldi is captured by the Romans.
Robbed by bandits, Fara is discovered by John the Baptist who advises her to listen to the great teacher, Jesus. She comes under the protection of Peter but vows to kill Herod. She manages to be employed in Herod’s household as she can translate Greek, in particular a series of prophecies written in the language that have been given to Herod.
Journey by Angela Hunt — On this deathbed, Jacob the patriarch bestows the blessing of the firsborn on the sons of Joseph, igniting a bitter conflict between the two brothers. Manasseh, the elder son, is surprised and disturbed when Jacob deliberately crosses his hands, giving the more favorable blessing to the younger Ephraim — the blessing that rightfully belongs to him.
Ephraim glories in the unexpected promise of power and feels that he is the one to continue his father’s work and keep the Hebrews in Egypt. He is convinced that greatness for the nation of Israel will only be achieved through the mighty kingdom of Egypt.
But Manasseh, visiting Hebron for the first time at Jacob’s death, feels a warm stirring in his heart for Canaan. He believes the Hebrews should leave Egypt immediately and return to the land that God had promised to Abraham, Isaac, and his grandfather Jacob. There is no reason to stay in Egypt any longer. The famine has been over for twelve years and Jacob is dead.
Two brothers in conflict — not only over Israel’s future, but also over love. One brother loves the beautiful harpist of Pharaoh’s court, but the other already possesses her heart. Life, love, and the future of the nation are at stake!
Madman by Tracy Groot — If there is a way into madness, logic says there is a way out. Logic says. Tallis, a philosopher’s servant, is sent to a Greek academy in Palestine only to discover that it has silently, ominously, disappeared. No one will tell him what happened, but he learns what has become of four of its scholars. One was murdered. One committed suicide. One worships in the temple of Dionysus. And one … one is a madman. From the author of The Brother’s Keeper comes a tale of mystery, horror, and hope in the midst of unimaginable darkness, the story behind the Geresene demoniac of the gospels of Mark and Luke.
Magdalene by Angela Hunt — Mary Magdalene. The controversial woman with a past only one Man could forgive. A true love story that changed the face of history.
“I was Miryam of Magdala, seller of fine fabrics and wife of Yaakov the fisherman. With my husband and son, I held a place of honor among my countrymen until a company of rogue soldiers took everything from me. I might not be Roman, but I knew injustice when I saw it. And I had been most grievously wronged.”
In an era when women are sequestered and silenced, Miryam of Magdala lives a contended life until her son’s careless gesture evokes a hostile action that shatters her serenity. With no hope of justice, Miryam commits and unthinkable act…and descends into depths of darkness that threaten her life and her sanity.
Even after Yeshua the Messiah dramatically restores her life, Miryam can neither forget nor forgive unresolved injustices. Prodded by a hunger for vengeance she will not deny, this woman of uncommon courage risks her life and her heart by drawing destiny into her own hands.
The Priest by Francine Rivers — The Priest is the first book in a new companion series to A Lineage of Grace. Each novella peers into the life of one of five biblical men (such as Aaron, Jonathan, Silas) who stood behind the great heroes of faith.
In The Priest you’ll meet Moses’ brother Aaron, the first high priest of Israel. How will Aaron support Moses while he struggles with being satisfied with God’s plan for his own life? Be inspired by how this seemingly secondary character plays a key role in supporting his leader and impacting the faith for eternity.
Rahab’s Story by Ann Burton — They were women of conviction and courage, whose stories inspire the faithful to this day. Here is Signet’s second installment of Women of the Bible, a compelling new series for fans of historical romance and fiction.
Accused of witchery, Rahab is banished to certain death in Jericho. Now the girl once known as Beautiful Rahab must join the ranks of the city’s prostitutes. She keeps her faith in God, but when Jewish spies appear, begging her to hide them, she must decide: stay safe and deny them-or help her fellow believers and transform herself from harlot to heroine.
Three From Galilee by Marjorie Holmes — Marjorie Holmes, the award-winning author of such classic bestsellers as I’ve Got to Talk to Somebody, God, was renowned for making the Bible come to life in books that brought hope and inspiration to millions. The first novel in this trilogy-her acclaimed, hugely successful Two from Galilee-told the great love story of Mary and Joseph as never before.
Now, in Three from Galilee, Holmes’s fictionalized retelling of the life of Jesus covers a period overlooked by the Gospels – the “lost years” between age 12, when Jesus debated the elders in the temple, to the age of 30, when he actually began his ministry. With great reverence, she dares to wonder what Jesus did during those years, if he was like other young men of his time, and whether he experienced God’s greatest gift to humanity – love. Using her remarkable talents, Holmes brings Jesus, his parents, brothers, sisters, and friends to life in a story that is dramatic, deeply moving, and unforgettable.
Unashamed by Francine Rivers — Book 2 in the Lineage of Grace series by best-selling author Francine Rivers. In her trademark style, Francine tells the compelling story of Rahab from the book of Joshua. Readers will gain a fresh understanding of God’s work through the life of this unlikely woman in the lineage of Christ.
Unveiled by Francine Rivers — Unveiled is the story of Tamar, one of the women in the lineage of Jesus. Francine brings the story to life in her trademark style, showing the grace of God in the life of Tamar and her father-in-law, Judah. Unveiled is the first in the Lineage of Grace series of five novellas covering the stories of Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary.