Bit by bit (outside of class reading) I'm enjoying Whose Bible Is It?: A Short History of the Scriptures by Jaroslav Pelikan. It gives a narrative account of the development, formation and evolution of Jewish and Christian Holy Text, the transition from oral to written, Hebrew to Greek, and so on...
Pelikan is brilliant and concise. When I was learning ancient Hebrew a few years ago, I became keenly interested in how we got these texts in the first place! This has been the most approachable material on that subject, I've found.
"But you don't have to take my word for it..." (said LeVar Burton)
- "An engaging and highly readable survey of biblical scholarship that tells a fascinating and complex story."
—The Wall Street Journal
- "A crisp, remarkably succinct history of the Bible as preserved, interpreted, translated and canonized by the various faiths that believe in it."
—Los Angeles Times
- "Outstanding . . . Pelikan takes the reader through the process of scripture building with a fluency and ease that is both accessible and understandable."