Inspiring Books: University Librarians choose …

For this post in our Inspiring Books series two librarians, Nick and Claire, working in Manchester University tell us about a book which has inspired them.  

Thank you to Nick and Claire for their contributions to the series.

Nick, a valued helper at our monthly Open Table service chose Aldo Schiavone’s Pontius Pilate: Deciphering a Memory. Schiavone is an Italian historian of the Roman world. Here he presents a fascinating biography of Pontius Pilate. Nick writes:

This book fascinated me. It is a searching account of the conversation which is claimed to have taken place between Pontius Pilot and Jesus Christ. We see clearly ourselves the far reaching impact the New Testament’s account of this dialogue has had in terms of its impact on the shaping of our own beliefs and creeds and for this reason I found this book very inspiring. It also asks a number of important and astute questions, particularly about the origins of the Christian faith.

Claire  chose as her inspiring book, Waterbugs and Butterflies by Doris Stickney. Claire writes,

Many years ago I was a children’s librarian in a children’s hospital and this pocket book really did live in my pocket during my time there . I encountered many children or siblings of children who were terminally ill. Sometimes they wanted to know what would happen next [after they had died], which will never be an easy question to answer. Waterbugs and Dragonflies is primarily written for children and gently explains the natural transition from waterbug to dragonfly. The simplicity of life evolving from one stage to another is beautifully conveyed and resonates with children and adults alike; those with faith and those with none. The book was beautifully illustrated and fitted snuggly fitted in children’s hands. I have many poignant memories of this little pocket book bringing comfort, hope and peace to many children, adults and myself. I still read it, 20 years on.


About stchrysostoms

St Chrysostom’s is an Anglican (Church of England) parish church in Manchester, UK. We’re an inclusive, diverse and welcoming faith community rejoicing in our Anglo Catholic tradition, where people of many differing backgrounds make friends. Find our Facebook group at
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