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2022 Reading Goals

January 4th, 2022 | 6 min read

By Jake Meador

I’m following Leah Sargeant’s lead this year and am trying to give myself a list of “goal books” to read for 2022. Thanks to some news I’m going to share in a separate post on the main site, I’m hoping to be able to do more reading this year. The last several years—ever since we had our third child and even more since the arrival of number four—have seen a pretty significant dip in my reading. In college and early on in our marriage, I was typically reading 50-75 books a year.

The last few years that number has been closer to 25. Part of that dip is due to a lack of time and part of it also is due to me choosing more difficult books to read—my history reading has dropped off a good bit in recent years, as has my fiction and popular trade reading. These days I’d say most of my reading is theology and academic press books. I’m not sure that’s how I always want my reading to look, but for now I think it’s the right mix given the work I do here and my current interests.

That said, I’m hoping to have more reading time this year and to keep the same subject matter as recent years but to actually finish more books. We’ll see. I may have to come back to this list in July and pretty dramatically revise. For now though, here’s my breakdown for the year.

Also: Remember that Mere Orthodoxy has a shop on Bookshop. If you buy from within our shop, we’ll get a small commission from Bookshop which we can then use to purchase books for book reviewers.

Classical Theology Treatises (2)

City of God by Augustine—I’ve read most of this, but have never made it cover-to-cover. I’m hoping to change that this year.

Bullinger’s Decades—This was an ETS purchase that I hope to make my way through over the next year. Tentatively I’m thinking Bullinger will be for Q1 and Q2 of 2022 and Augustine will be Q3 and Q4.

Shorter Classical Theology

This is mostly going to be for the popular patristics volumes that are accumulating in my library thanks to the good folks at St Vladimir Seminary Press, who I hope we can get to sponsor some kind of podcast project in the future. I also hope to read several treatises on virginity from the church fathers for potential use in a future writing project. Specific goals:

On Social Justice by Basel the Great

On Wealth and Poverty by John Chrysostom

On Christian Ethics by Basel the Great

Of Holy Virginity by St Augustine

On Virginity by St. Gregory of Nyssa

Concerning Virginity by St. Ambrose

Modern Theology Treatises (2)

The plan here is to tackle Sonderegger in the first six months and Bavinck in the last six.

Sonderegger’s Systematic Theology—Volumes 1 and 2

Bavinck’s Reformed Dogmatics—Volumes 2, 3, and 4

Shorter Modern Theology

Barth’s Dogmatics in Outline

Tanner’s Christianity and the New Spirit of Capitalism

Brunner’s Revelation and Reason

Warfield’s Faith and Life

Jennings’s Commentary on Acts

Cone’s Malcolm and Martin in America

Katongole’s Born from Lament

Bediako’s Theology and Identity


Holier Than Thou by Jackie Hill-Perry

Tools for Conviviality by Ivan Illich

The Uncontrollability of the World by Hartmut Rosa

Feminist Theory by bell hooks

Belonging: A Culture of Place by bell hooks

Public Religions in the Modern World by Jose Casanova

Debt: The First 5,000 Years by David Graeber

Love’s Labor by Eva Feder Kittay

How to Think Seriously About the Planet by Roger Scruton

The Soul of the World by Roger Scruton

On Revolution by Hannah Arendt

Hobby Reading

Smuggler’s Cove by Martin and Rebecca Cate

Death and Co: Welcome Home by Alex Day, Nick Fauchald, and David Caplan

Black Smoke by Adrian Miller

Imbibe by David Wondrich

Jake Meador

Jake Meador is the editor-in-chief of Mere Orthodoxy. He is a 2010 graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he studied English and History. He lives in Lincoln, NE with his wife Joie, their daughter Davy Joy, and sons Wendell, Austin, and Ambrose. Jake's writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Commonweal, Christianity Today, Fare Forward, the University Bookman, Books & Culture, First Things, National Review, Front Porch Republic, and The Run of Play and he has written or contributed to several books, including "In Search of the Common Good," "What Are Christians For?" (both with InterVarsity Press), "A Protestant Christendom?" (with Davenant Press), and "Telling the Stories Right" (with the Front Porch Republic Press).