One year ago today my book Apocrypha for Beginners: A Guide to Understanding and Exploring Scriptures Beyond the Bible was officially released. Over the past year, I have been so happy to see the book out in the world so that more people can learn about biblical apocrypha.
In the last year, more than 3,000 copies of Apocrypha for Beginners have sold. The book has received 257 total ratings on Amazon, 34 with reviews, for a 4.4-star overall rating, and it’s consistently remained in the top 100 books (sometimes top 50, and top 20 soon after its release!) in the “Christian Bible Apocrypha & Pseudepigrapha” category on Amazon. It’s also received 30 ratings, 8 with reviews, for a 3.87-star overall rating on Goodreads.
I’ve been thankful to have readers like family and friends, and their friends, colleagues in academia, students taking relevant courses, at least one church that did a study group with it, and many, many strangers. I was especially grateful for James McGrath’s in depth and thoughtful review of the book on the Religion Prof blog at Patheos. It’s been a joy to see the book reach so many people. Even more, I’m ecstatic to know how many have enjoyed the content of the book and how it has opened them up to more learning about apocrypha.
So what have I been up to since the book was released? Well, I’ve continued to enjoy working on apocrypha and introducing people to it in other ways.
- I published a series of posts related to the book, including posts about some B-sides apocrypha that I didn’t get to discuss in the book
- I was interviewed by Shirley Paulson on the Bible and Beyond Podcast
- I guest taught classes on “Canon & Apocrypha” for my colleagues Lydia Walker (Barton College) and Kisha Tracy (Fitchburg State University)
- I’ve participated in online events related to apocrypha like a Primary Text Lab on the Protevangelium of James, hosted by the Brane Collective (my remarks are available here); and a Virtual Book Review of The Oxford Handbook of the Apocrypha, edited by Gerbern S. Oegema (2021), hosted by the Enoch Seminar (my remarks are available here)
- I’ve continued to research apocrypha, especially their transmission in the medieval and early modern periods
So it’s been a great year of continuing to study and share about what I love!
I won’t lie: Apocrypha for Beginners is not the true word of God…
but I do think that it has a lot to offer for people interested in the histories of Jewish and Christian apocrypha.
In short: thank you to everyone who has read, rated, reviewed, assigned, taught with, or told others about Apocrypha for Beginners !