A well-researched, if fairly standard, manifesto about how the end of the world is nigh.

READ REVIEW

GLOBAL WARMING OR GOD'S WARNING

A debut work of Christian eschatology identifies signs of the apocalypse in the globe’s tumultuous climate.

Today’s world is full of strange phenomena—ferocious storms, heat waves, punishing droughts, polar vortexes—that many are quick to attribute to the process of global warming. But could these happenings be better explained by biblical prophecies? Coverley, a Howard University adjunct professor with a Ph.D. in organizational/health communication, looks at media stories, scientific evidence, the opinions of laypeople, and the Scriptures themselves to find the answer. “This book will make people aware of and prepare them for the upcoming events,” writes the author in his introduction, “along with hope for escaping and embracing the new world order that the Bible promises.” From birds falling out of the sky and increased cyber warfare to the international refugee crisis and widespread flooding, Coverley shows readers what the media are reporting, what the zeitgeist is saying, and what scientists are asserting before diving into the biblical explanations for these occurrences. Citing the words of Old Testament prophets, New Testament apostles, and Jesus himself, the author argues that there is a divine explanation for all of this. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing depends on where readers sit with the Man Upstairs. Coverley writes with the urgency one would expect from a man foretelling doom, though his message is surprisingly inclusive: “When believers in Jesus Christ see the signs related to his coming, they should rejoice because he is coming soon, not get into fights about ‘taking back our country,’ not dividing a nation, one group against another.” The author has done a great deal of research, and, for a religious text, he gets relatively deep into the science of climate change, providing rich details. That said, this is a book about the imminent end of the world, and readers even somewhat familiar with that millenniums-old genre will find all the usual tropes present. Coverley structures the work as if readers can choose between science and faith. But the real option that he offers is accept Jesus as your savior or miss out on the kingdom of heaven.

A well-researched, if fairly standard, manifesto about how the end of the world is nigh.

Pub Date: Dec. 8, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-973608-03-5

Page Count: 500

Publisher: Westbow Press

Review Posted Online: March 14, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

The author’s sincere sermon—at times analytical, at times hortatory—remains a hopeful one.

THE ROAD TO CHARACTER

New York Times columnist Brooks (The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character and Achievement, 2011, etc.) returns with another volume that walks the thin line between self-help and cultural criticism.

Sandwiched between his introduction and conclusion are eight chapters that profile exemplars (Samuel Johnson and Michel de Montaigne are textual roommates) whose lives can, in Brooks’ view, show us the light. Given the author’s conservative bent in his column, readers may be surprised to discover that his cast includes some notable leftists, including Frances Perkins, Dorothy Day, and A. Philip Randolph. (Also included are Gens. Eisenhower and Marshall, Augustine, and George Eliot.) Throughout the book, Brooks’ pattern is fairly consistent: he sketches each individual’s life, highlighting struggles won and weaknesses overcome (or not), and extracts lessons for the rest of us. In general, he celebrates hard work, humility, self-effacement, and devotion to a true vocation. Early in his text, he adapts the “Adam I and Adam II” construction from the work of Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik, Adam I being the more external, career-driven human, Adam II the one who “wants to have a serene inner character.” At times, this veers near the Devil Bugs Bunny and Angel Bugs that sit on the cartoon character’s shoulders at critical moments. Brooks liberally seasons the narrative with many allusions to history, philosophy, and literature. Viktor Frankl, Edgar Allan Poe, Paul Tillich, William and Henry James, Matthew Arnold, Virginia Woolf—these are but a few who pop up. Although Brooks goes after the selfie generation, he does so in a fairly nuanced way, noting that it was really the World War II Greatest Generation who started the ball rolling. He is careful to emphasize that no one—even those he profiles—is anywhere near flawless.

The author’s sincere sermon—at times analytical, at times hortatory—remains a hopeful one.

Pub Date: April 21, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-8129-9325-7

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Feb. 16, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2015

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more