Friday, August 12, 2016

The Michael Ramsey Prize 2016 - My winner

So I did it:  All six books on the Michael Ramsey Prize shortlist have been read and reviewed.  The reading was fairly constant, the reviewing was a bit rushed towards the end!




The reviews are here:
Faith and Struggle on Smokey Mountain
Healing Forgiveness
Children in the Bible
Unapologetic
Dementia
God's Presence
I've thoroughly enjoyed it.  They are a set of excellent books, and not necessarily ones I would have read otherwise.  It leaves me in very good heart regarding the health of theology written in English.

But on the Sunday of Greenbelt, one and only one of the books will be declared the winner.  So I thought I'd give it a go and pick the single title that I think should win.

But first, something I have noticed from previous years shortlists.  For the past two shortlists, I have found bookmarks featuring all the shortlisted titles.  On both occasions, the book in the bottom left-hand place has won.

This is 2011:





And this is 2013:




So, arranging the titles for 2016 in similar fashion, would produce this:



And John Swinton's Dementia would be the winner.

And it would be a worthy winner.  In fact there is only one book that I would be disappointed to see win.  It is a good book, the other five are outstanding books.  But it would be invidious to name it.

Instead, I want to name the book I would choose were I a judge and it is this one:





Faith and Struggle on Smokey Mountain by Benigno Beltran

For sheer variety and readability, for challenge and commitment, for being the book I simply enjoyed the most.  For all these reasons, I would choose this book.

The actual winner will be announced on Sunday 28th August.  I look forward to seeing who it is!

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