by Thomas Dubay, S.M. (2003, originally 1981)
This may be the single hardest book to read I have ever encountered. It masterfully challenged assumptions I took for granted. It’s like a bucket of cold water thrown in your face.
What makes this book most difficult of all is that it holds up an ideal that seems to be unattainable. Yet it will change you for the better, if you let it. I know I changed a lot of my economic habits as a result of this book. I continue to realize ways in which I fall short, but I am better off for these realizations than if I never had them. I keep trying and trying to approach even the resemblance of attaining the ideal held out by this book. And I continue to be humbled as I uncover new ways (old really–just new to my consciousness) in which I fall way, way short.
I should add that Fr. Dubay gives one area where you should not skimp: spiritual reading material. Give yourself a generous allowance for that. Good advice I have found.