Recovering the Lost Art of Reading

Spread the love

A book review of Recovering the Lost Art of Reading: A Quest for the True, the Good and the Beautiful by Leland Ryken and Glenda Mathes

A book review of Recovering the Lost Art of Reading: A Quest for the True, the Good and the Beautiful by Leland Ryken and Glenda Mathes

Stars: ****

Crossway (2021)
General Books and Reading
304 pages

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Crossway in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Summary: A Christian Perspective on the Joys of Reading. Reading has become a lost art. With smartphones offering us endless information with the tap of a finger, it’s hard to view reading as anything less than a tedious and outdated endeavor. This is particularly problematic for Christians, as many find it difficult to read even the Bible consistently and attentively. Reading is in desperate need of recovery.

Recovering the Lost Art of Reading addresses these issues by exploring the importance of reading in general as well as studying the Bible as literature, offering practical suggestions along the way. Leland Ryken and Glenda Faye Mathes inspire a new generation to overcome the notion that reading is a duty and instead discover it as a delight.

Recovering the Lost Art of Reading

I read this book for a readathon which I thought was the perfect choice. It’s very sad how many people don’t read, or don’t read often. I know most people read fiction. I’m one of the odd ones out for that. However even though I prefer nonfiction I still encourage people to read fiction too.

“Surveys consistently show that most people believe reading is a worthwhile use of time and they should do more of it. But some people don’t read any books. Gene Edward Veith Jr. writes: ‘A growing problem is illiteracy – many people do not know how to read. A more severe problem, though is ‘aliteracy’ – a vast number of problem know how to read but never do it.” Most of us could (and suspect we should) read more and read better.”

Recovering the Lost Art of Reading pg 17

I have always read. At age 5 or 6 I learned to read and I never looked back. I read fiction back then too and I can’t imagine NOT reading. I go though stages of reading more and reading less but I always read.

How the Book is Divided

The book covers three main topics:

  • Reading is a Lost Art
  • Reading Literature
  • Recovering the Art of Reading

The first section talks about reading and how it’s taken a back burner to electronics such as video games and smart phones. The quote above is from this section. Also discussed is why considering reading an art?

The second section talks about different types of literature. First what is literature is discussed as well as why does it matter and what does it have to offer. Then different types of literature is discussed. Specifically what counts as that type, what it has to offer and tips on reading that type. The types discussed are stories, poems, novels, fantasy, children’s books, creative nonfiction and the Bible as literature.

The third section talks about truth and beauty in literature as well as discovering literary excellence. Also freedom to read, reading good books and literature and the spiritual life.

It was overall a great book, very interesting. You will definitely want to be Christian to read it though.

Buy Recovering the Lost Art of Reading at and help support the blog.

Find Recovering the Lost Art of Reading at Goodreads.

About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.