For the last year or so, I have been making my way through Warren Carroll's series on the history of Christianity. Rarely have I ever read a "scholarly" work and been vastly entertained at the same time.
I actually found myself looking forward to reading the footnotes at the end of every chapter. (Does that make them chapter-notes?) There is a war of words there in which scholars politely insult each other and question their mental acuity, which is actually hilarious.
What I find refreshing is that Carroll is completely transparent about his Catholic world view and informs the reader up front.
«History is a cosmic battleground between Heaven and Hell.» - Warren H. CarrollIt is well worth the read -- you'll learn something and be entertained all at the same time.
[I]ts author, Warren H. Carroll, PhD, confesses at the very outset, it «is written by a Catholic, from a Catholic perspective, with the conviction that Jesus Christ founded a church and that the visible church He founded is the Roman Catholic Church which, through its succession of Popes in particular, has remained, and always will be his Church.»
*The Founding of Christendom* is an extremely well-researched and well-argued work, at once scholarly and exciting, and never afraid to swim against the tide. Particularly praiseworthy is its wonderful, twenty-two page annotated bibliography, a true gateway to the best scholarship on the period (the origins to 324 A.D.), stating the religious orientation of most volumes and Carroll's estimate of their scholarly worth.