At last a topic I can address (somewhat) authoritatively. I recently (1-1/2
years ago) took an individualized course at Burlington College on the
Historical Jesus. I am listing the complete set of books used below.
Borg, Marcus. Jesus: A New Vision.
Crossan John Dominic. The Historical Jesus.
Davies, Stevan. Jesus the Healer.
Funk, Robert. Honest to Jesus.
Mack, Burton. The Lost Gospel: The Book of Q and Christian Origins.
Meier, John P. A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the Historical Jesus.
Sanders, E. P. The Historical Figure of Jesus.
Smith, Morton. Jesus the Magician
Vermes, Geza. Jesus the Jew
Vermes, Geza. The Religion of Jesus the New.
Witherington, Ben. The Jesus Quest.
Of these, the ones I would consider the most important are the titles by
Mack, Meier, Davies, Crossan, and Funk. Davies work in particular has grown
on me since completing my course. Not that I buy everything he has to say,
but rather that the concept of Jesus as Spirit-Possessed Healer rings more
true to me with time. Beyond that, Crossan and Funk provide the moderate
overview of current thinking. But I would wager that Burton Mack's book is
closer to the actuality of Jesus.
Hope this helps!