I have just finished James M. Robinson's new book - Jesus According to the Earliest Witnesses - and it is a treat.
Not only is it the culmination of the study and research of arguably the most well-rounded and dedicated scholar of this genre, but it is also a memoir of the path he followed. Born in 1924, he was on the cusp of modern New Testament studies. From youth till the present his interest and study led him to incredible knowledge and acumen on the subject. He states his chronologies flatly without embellishments but the stories are amazing, both in the casual disclosure of his multilingual abilities, his doggedness in getting things done and penchant for doing what needed to be done when no one else would. So much of the infrastructure of early Christian studies was created or enhanced by him. At the time he was Professor of New Testament and Theology at the School of Theology at Claremont, he founded the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity of which he became director. He doggedly perused the papyri of the Nag Hammadi in the hands of government in Egypt till he was able to photograph the intact pages for translation. Then he was able to unwrap the boondoggle that had tied up the remaining fragments, involved waiting, and anxious scholars and freed the text to the waiting world.
I have long been a follower of his work and I have ephemera from his lectures and career but this book is the best. It is a compilation of writings from various points in his career. The insight he has gained on the subject-Jesus According to the Earliest Witnesses-is deep and rich.