Wiersbe's "50 people"
I'm not a huge fan of history or esp. biography. (I'm not averse to them; they're just not on the top of my reading list.) But Wiersbe's 50 People Every Christian Should Know was a really nice read-- a combo of mini-biography and (implied) devotional material. As you read it, you get a good overview of his subjects and it ends up being useful for reflection on what God has done and what he might want to do with you.
I had read a few commentaries by Wiersbe in the past. (As an aside, those are useful for organizing book studies and adding a few nuggets.) Likewise, these are quite accessible. He typically devotes 4-8 pages for each person. (A few get longer treatment.) His subjects are concentrated disproportionately in 19th century England. But they are drawn, about equally, from a.) the famous; b.) those whose names I knew, but knew little about them; and c.) those I had never heard about.
The work would be even more useful for preachers and teachers, since Wiersbe provides a wealth of recommendations on the material that the 50 have written.
Check it out!