• When Helping Hurts – Brian Fikkert
  • Falling Free – Shannan Martin
  • Brave Souls – Belinda Bauman
  • Loving my Actual Neighbor – Alexandra Kuykendall
  • The Myth of the American Dream – D.L. Mayfield
  • Amina’s Voice – Hena Khan
  • Just Mercy – Bryan Stevenson
  • Thou Shalt Not Be a Jerk – Eugene Cho
  • The Undocumented Americans – Karla Cornejo Villavicencio
  • City of Thorns – Ben Rawlence
  • After the Last Border – Jessica Goudeau
  • The God Who Sees – Karen Gonzalez
  • Fire by Night – Melissa Florer-Bixler
  • The Blue Parakeet – Scot McKnight
  • The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien

Favorite Read

After the Last Border by Jessica Goudeau

This was a beautifully written book that is part memoir and part historical overview. The author artfully weaves together the stories of two women who came to the U.S. as refugees under very different circumstances: one from Syria and the other from Burma/Myanmar. Interwoven within those narratives is a timeline of our refugee resettlement program and how it has changed in recent years. Goudeau manages to pack a lot of history into this story to frame the narrative, but the writing style makes the book feel far more like a novel than a history book or biography. The book beautifully illustrates the strength and resilience of these two women, and underscores why we should all care more about the future of refugee resettlement. A must-read!

Most Challenging Read

The Myth of the American Dream by D.L. Mayfield

This collection of essays from D.L. Mayfield is powerful and convicting, and I’m not sure anyone could come away from reading this book unscathed. Mayfield examines the myths we are told about not just our history but our character as a nation even now. What are the values that we hold dear, and how “Christian” are those values, really? What kind of shifts need to happen in our communities in order to fulfill the sacred command to love our neighbors? Mayfield doesn’t try to answer these questions for us, but she challenges us to contemplate the way we exist in our communities and to ask ourselves once again, “who is my neighbor?”