In 2008, in honor or our 225th anniversary (actually our 226th, but we kept the party going) my little club of bandits read the Bible (including Apocrypha) cover to cover. I created a blog for it, Bible and Jive, which I will keep posted.
For 2009, we are going to read the Qur'an cover to cover. I have created a blog for it--you guessed it--Qur'an and Jive.
I am way out of my element on this one. I don't even know a decent English translation to read. By "decent" I mean something that is easy to read, is true to the Arabic, and one that may have historical/critical notes. In other words, I am looking for a translation/edition of the Qur'an that a religion professor who is committed to the principles of the Enlightenment would use in a university religion class.
In seminary, I took a course on Muslim-Christian relations and we read the translation by Dawood (Penguin). There must be some better translations since that one.
The Qur'an isn't that long. We will read about a 12th of it each month. For January, if you would like to join us, read "The Opening" and "The Cow." I will spend at least one Sunday per month speaking about what we have read during worship.
If you have suggestions for introductions to Islam or guides to the Qur'an, that would be helpful. I'll post a bunch of links on the blog.