(This is a condensed version of the full-length feature.)

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “A man is known by the books he reads.” People are always seeking suggestions on what to read. With a new school year starting, what better time to give Biola Connections readers book recommendations?

Twelve professors from Biola’s six schools gave us their top picks — one book per month. The professors were given a tough task: Of all the books you’ve read and assigned, choose just one related to your discipline that you think is both valuable and accessible. The reasons for their selections varied — some chose books to stretch and challenge readers, some to provide insight, and others to equip and develop them — professionally, personally and spiritually.

All their choices were reflections of themselves.

Now, go hit the books!


Simple Health: Easy and Inexpensive Things You Can Do To Improve Your Health (Siloam Press) by David Biebel and Harold Koenig

Recommended by Marc Apkarian, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Kinesiology, Health and Physical Education


A Short History of Renaissance and Reformation Europe: Dances over Fire and Water (Prentice Hall) by Jonathan Zophy

Recommended by Leland Edward Wilshire, Ph.D., Professor of History

Missions and Evangelism

The Celtic Way of Evangelism: How Christianity Can Reach the West … Again (Abingdon Press) by George Hunter, III

Recommended by Marla Campbell, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Intercultural Studies

Pop Culture

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference (Back Bay Books) by Malcolm Gladwell

Recommended by Lisa Swain, M.A., Associate Professor of Mass Communication


The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) by Thomas Friedman. 

Recommended by David Bourgeois, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Information Systems


The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Recommended by Amy Obrist, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of English

Social Justice

Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger: Moving From Affluence to Generosity (W Publishing Group) by Ronald Sider

Recommended by Brad Christerson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Sociology


Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality (Collins)by Henry Cloud

Recommended by Daniel Maltby, Ph.D., Professor of Management and Executive Leadership, Director of the Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership Program

Current Issues

Why the Rest Hates the West: Understanding the Roots of Global Rage (IVP) by Meic Pearse

Recommended by Steven Rundle, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Economics

Spiritual Formation

Renovation of the Heart: Putting on the Character of Christ (NavPress) by Dallas Willard
Recommended by Steven Porter, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Theology and Philosophy


He Shines In All That’s Fair: Culture and Common Grace (Wm. B. Eerdmans) by Richard Mouw
Recommended by Richard Langer, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biblical Studies and Theological Integration


Becoming Attached: First Relationships and How They Shape Our Capacity to Love (Oxford University Press) by Robert Karen

Recommended by Todd Hall, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology