Our Library is a distinctive and important part of the Wagon box. Through books and portraits we invite characters, ideas and examples from the past and from our literary heritage into the Wagon box community. We believe they are a vital part of the conversation right now. The most important words and examples in history are those of Jesus Christ, but other voices also inform us as we respond to the changing historical situation and help us understand the world, each other, and ourselves and forge a path into the wilderness before us. We are on this journey together and need each other and the voices of the past. Come have a meal with a friend and with these great thinkers.

We will shelve the complete works of the following authors for the following reasons:


Leo Tolstoy

Tolstoy was not only a master storyteller, but a man of genuine conviction who tried hard to live out the true Christian life as he understood it. He was a pioneer in ways of living and breaking down class barriers in a way that was sacrificial and took into account different callings. His A Confession was the first book read by the Wagonbox book club.


G.K. Chesterton

Chesterton was man who loved the fat of life–a pint of ale and a good steak–but also the mystical beauty of the world and the ever new simplicity of the Christian tradition. His essays are somehow mixed a sound common sense with a creative wit and insight as he tirelessly fought against the arrogant atheistic progressive modernity pressing in on England between the wars.


Fyodor Dostoyevsky

More than any other writer, Dostoyevsky captured the deeply troubling anxiety of modernity as the abyss of nothingness, with its moral untethering, loomed before the western world. His deep conviction of the divine reconciliation of all things through suffering and by way of truth and beauty underlies his riveting stories.


George MacDonald

MacDonald was a true Scotsman whose fairy tales and sermons probe the deepest truths and human longings which point us toward the beauty and forgiveness behind the darkness and wrongdoing in life. He had a heavy influence on C.S. Lewis, Chesterton, Lewis Carroll, Tolkien and many others. 


Søren Kierkegaard

Kierkegaard stands in a category all his own, probing the psychological and philosophical workings of existence, faith and the human experience. His books are innovative, as he poked at the established religious system and the shallow certainties of modernity with unique cleverness and commitment. 


Simone WeilSimone Weil

Weil was a philosopher, Christian mystic and political activist whose life demonstrated a brave authenticity. She fought against the pervasive and intrusive State in its various forms, left and right, and searched for honest, decentralized and humane ways of living together peacefully.


Ernest Shackleton 

Shackleton was a great explorer whose harrowing adventure to reach the South Pole fills any reader with awe and new reservoirs of courage. His daring spirit and indomitable determination are a great example to any. We have a permanent discount in his honor to reward such behavior, and will have not only his published writings and biographies, but also facsimilies of diaries, notes and other papers.


The rest of our collection will focus topics such as small-scale economics, alternative governance models, pioneering arts and adventures, civic and community organization, agrarian and the like. We will focus on harder to find texts. Some examples are:

Wendell Berry

Alexander Chayanov

Camillo Sitte

Ralph Borsodi

Scott & Helen Nearing

Liberty Hyde Bailey

And others. 


A note on Mr. Toad and Wind in the Willows.

The stories of Rat, Mole and Toad in Kenneth Graham’s classic are one of the best illustrations of the bond of joy and responsibility that attend close friendship. Mr. Toad’s adventures and the loving efforts of his friends to contain his excess are a wonderful lesson in community life and we want to celebrate that through honoring Mr. Thaddeus Toad.

We host week-long literary events focusing on writing, the works of the above authors, philosophy, and other topics that may be of interest to you. Sign up here to be notified about future events: