Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther by Roland Bainton

Review

The New York Times called Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther by Roland H. Bainton, “Excellent . . . illuminating and eloquent” and “The most readable Luther biography in English.” Echoing this, I found this book to be incredibly interesting and a rather easy and enjoyable read. Bainton fused scholarly with pleasurable. It is obvious that he both knew Luther and Luther’s historical setting extremely well. The book is filled with pictures of wood carvings from the time period as well as other art pieces such as musical scores which provide an interesting as well as helpful learning aid. Bainton organizes the book in a largely chronological fashion, yet at times diverts from this pattern with some occasional topical sections when deemed helpful (and it is). One of my favorite aspects of the book was the frequent quotes from Luther himself. Luther’s own words are worth the read. He is incredibly challenging, inspiring, witty, and quite humorous. At times I even found myself laughing audibly.

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