I found myself thinking about Ecclesiastes 11: 1-11 many times throughout this novel.
"Is there anything of which one can say,
'Look! This is something new'?
It was here already, long ago;
it was here before our time.
No one remembers the former generations,
and even those yet to come
will not be remembered
by those who follow them."
The author has created a book that seems to me to be based on the supposition: "what if?", or "maybe, like this...", and then proceeds to connect the dots in an interesting, albeit dialogue-filled and character-driven chronology. The book displays characters that have a 'true faith' in their beliefs while at the same time allows for some (perhaps justifiable) speculation, although they flirt closely with some heresy at times. I was myself amused at how important Leibowitz had become to the story, especially when his former life is mentioned in passing as it related to the story. Less focus was placed on Jesus by the monks in the story (maybe intentionally?) although they did mention Jesus as Messiah when speaking about him, which must be taken into account.
I found myself shaking hands with the author, while at the same time keeping him at arms length. It is such a unique book, one that presents ideas I may have even accidentally thought about before. I wondered that no one had written something like it before.
Not what I expected, but worth reading
The plot snaps quickly into the story. By page two we are already wondering what's happened.
In this exciting mystery-drama (that reads like a police procedural), we follow the hero as he is stripped of his riches and covered in filthy rags. His good name is dragged through the mud. Uncomfortable accusations are made against him. Evidence supporting those allegations are uncovered. He is thoroughly dishonored, and locked away in prison to the relief of everyone around him. Then we learn who he really is...
This is the remarkable story of a young African child who is stolen from his home by rebel troops, his eventual journey to America, and then to the Olympics (twice representing USA in track).
Lopez writes with a simple faith that Christians will enjoy, yet won't offend listeners of other faiths.
Written as only Jack London can...
A man traveling alone across a winter-scape where temps are colder than -50 below.
His legs accidentally go through a soft spot where natural spring waters remain free of ice regardless of temps. Now the emergency! He must start a fire, but his hands are not working, and his legs are starting to freeze.
As I write this review, the midwest has been experiencing record cold temps as cold as -50°. School is cancelled and weather advisories go into effect. People are warned to stay indoors.
In this book, his friend warns him not go out alone, but he doesn't listen...
It is not London's best work, but he does manage to capture a certain poignancy.
Narration was fine- Husmann has a classic, crisp tone.
Neon Rainbow was enjoyable for what it was: a slightly over-the-top detective procedural that didn't stand still for very long.
Will Patton is one of my favorite narrators. I think he is born for it.
This was my least favorite of the three shorts by PKD I have read.
It felt contrived, and some of the plot lines were weak and unexplained. Just not very good.
the Post Script for this book was very interesting. It explains the inspiration was based on the author's family lineage: a family history of "public executioners".
The author found several manuscripts that confirmed his family's "business" was that of hangman, passed down from generation to generation. The author has chosen the "last hangman" to hang this story upon.
The story is a murder mystery. The hangman, named Jakob Kuisl, doesn't want to see an innocent person wrongly blamed for the crime, so he sets out to discover the truth.
The backdrop is an earthy backdrop of Medieval Germany, and brings sights, sounds, and smells of the past to life. The superstitions of the common folk are also keenly felt, and accusations of witchcraft and devilry complicate the hangman's task.
This is the first book I have finished that was over 40 hours in length.
I feel like I deserve a medal.
I didn't particularly enjoy it. I wouldn't read it again. And, I would only recommend it with a few cautions.
As a "history" of events leading up World War II, and the main players involved, it was admirable; About as entertaining as you can expect from an historical fiction.
That said, I didn't like any of the characters. For a forty-five hour book, I felt that they were shallow caricatures only serving to move the narrative. The dialogue was realistic and kept the story together, but the people were flat. A moment (any moment) of humor would have been like a ray of sunshine in an otherwise drab world!
The thing that really put me over the edge however, was the "cliff-hanger" ending (if you can call it that) leaving the reader only half way through the story. Imagine my surprise to find that another 45 hour book is needed to explain the rest of this story.
No, I am not going to read the next book because I don't care what happens to any of the characters involved.
While this book may be well-intentioned, it is not a good representation on Biblical Christianity. If it were simply a self-help book filled with inspiring stories I would have rated it much higher, but by attempting to parallel itself with some sort of Christianity, it deserves a much stricter critique.
Apart from the moral of the last story, this reviewer thinks it runs instead contrary to many biblical principles - the last story is somewhat redemptive.
It smacks of guidance counselor philosophy pretending at Christianity by using stories like David and Goliath. The author seems to forget, or not to know, that David defeated Goliath in the power of God, and not in his own strength. That is an important principle that is sorely lacing in this book.
The first half of the book seems to be about 'standing out, power-of-me attitudes, finding the right environment (college and good jobs) to be a big fish in a small pond', and nothing at all about glorifying God. This is a pervasive an attitude in our mainstream churches, and is reflected in the churches desire to legislate theology rather than draw close to God and lead others there.
Authentic Christianity modeled.
A breathe of fresh air.
The fact that the author narrated his story made it more believable. I might have doubted the sincerity if I had not heard him say it himself.
Many touching moments.
"And the soul feels it's worth". Thank you.
"How ugly are so many churches these days!" Schaeffer states in this slightly dated but important work.
Has there ever been a time in church history where 'art' has been more neglected and at the same time so despised (and even feared)?
Some of the questions tackled:
Can Christians make art that is religious in nature? Can Christians make art that is NOT religious in nature? Why are there so few pictures of anything in new "outreach" churches? Why are so many churches today made from the material that metal storage sheds are made from? Are stained glass windows unbiblical?
How many churches refuse to hang even a painting in the building!
Schaeffer seeks a Biblical footing for his reasonings. He leaves the reader with an important and balanced perspective about a case for art in churches today. He encourages a mindset for the Christian to take God's commands into account and seperate human traditions that run contrary.
It turns out that the Bible actually has a lot to say on the subject, some of it in exacting language while others can be clearly separated.
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