A no-nonsense Christian guide to fixing a broken marriage.

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MARRIAGE TRUST BUILDERS

A debut Christian manual explains how to repair a marriage using biblical teachings.

In marriage, trust is often weakened—or even broken—but that doesn’t mean that the union is ruined. As a counselor, Dean has worked with hundreds of couples who have trust issues at the center of their marital problems. “The large majority of these couples have experienced healing and a renewed marriage because of God’s Word, His love, and His grace,” writes the author in her introduction to this book, which translates her experiences as a counselor into advice for trust-poor couples. “The couples were willing to apply biblical instructions for restoration.” The guide focuses on three areas: recognizing and coping emotionally with broken trust, rebuilding it after it’s been shattered, and troubleshooting to keep the bonds healthy going forward. Each chapter features a combination of information, advice, anecdotes from Dean’s professional experience, analysis of the relevant biblical concepts (with plenty of quotations from Scripture), and questions for spouses to ask themselves in order to correctly frame the dimensions of their difficulties. As the perspective of this work is specifically Christian, the author places particular emphasis on ideas like confession, repentance, forgiveness, and temptation, reminding readers that their relationships to their spouses are wrapped up tightly with their connections to God: “Temptations pull someone toward engaging in sinful behavior and avoiding good and right behavior. Doing wrong and not doing right are both sin.” Dean’s prose is direct and accessible, though not as warm as one might expect from a self-help guide. The book’s religiosity is profound, and secular readers would do well to find a different resource. But the author does not let theology get in the way of practicality, and her advice offers serious and comprehensive solutions that go beyond simple confession and forgiveness. Sections like “Red Flags Regarding Lack of Repentance” and “Wrong Responses by the Offending Spouse” encourage the aggrieved to hold the guilty party’s feet to the fire. For those couples experiencing marital difficulties caused by infidelity or some other breach of trust and looking for solutions that are rooted in a Christian worldview, Dean provides a serious and pragmatic road map.

A no-nonsense Christian guide to fixing a broken marriage.

Pub Date: May 23, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-973628-80-4

Page Count: 246

Publisher: Westbow Press

Review Posted Online: Nov. 20, 2018

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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

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THE MYTH OF SISYPHUS

AND OTHER ESSAYS

This a book of earlier, philosophical essays concerned with the essential "absurdity" of life and the concept that- to overcome the strong tendency to suicide in every thoughtful man-one must accept life on its own terms with its values of revolt, liberty and passion. A dreary thesis- derived from and distorting the beliefs of the founders of existentialism, Jaspers, Heldegger and Kierkegaard, etc., the point of view seems peculiarly outmoded. It is based on the experience of war and the resistance, liberally laced with Andre Gide's excessive intellectualism. The younger existentialists such as Sartre and Camus, with their gift for the terse novel or intense drama, seem to have omitted from their philosophy all the deep religiosity which permeates the work of the great existentialist thinkers. This contributes to a basic lack of vitality in themselves, in these essays, and ten years after the war Camus seems unaware that the life force has healed old wounds... Largely for avant garde aesthetes and his special coterie.

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 1955

ISBN: 0679733736

Page Count: 228

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1955

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