A captivating religious dialogue for the modern age.

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God An Autobiography, As Told To A Philosopher

An atheist philosopher finds himself in a surprising series of conversations with God.

One of the two main characters in Martin’s debut is the author himself, whose own Christian faith didn’t survive even a rudimentary college philosophy class, “where arguments for the existence of God were shot down like clay pigeons.” The secular philosopher opens his book with a quick account of falling in love with the woman who would become his wife, but the focus shifts almost immediately to a mysterious voice he begins sensing, identifying itself as “the God of all” and heard only by Martin. After a good deal of initial doubts, he decides to embrace the experience, even though at first it resembles “a training in obedience,” with the voice ordering him around on trivial matters seemingly at random. But gradually, larger issues and disclosures begin to surface. And Martin shares a great many of these revelations in an immensely readable prose that’s reverential but completely accessible to nonbelievers. His portrait of God is a remarkable dramatic construct, a vastly enigmatic being seized with an urge to unveil Himself in detail. This is a God who dwelled for unbounded ages in a formless void before existence began and He started to evolve along with it, shaping space and matter toward His eventual relationship with humankind, a process of creating Himself. Martin’s version of God is often every bit as argumentative and contradictory as the one found in the Bible, but this volume’s narration helps smooth things over: it’s easily literate (quotes from many authors abound) and excellent at clarifying the deep philosophical subjects covered as the dialogue progresses. Martin’s deity talks about being part of non-Christian texts like the Upanishads and the Mahabharata (and even discusses the “rebel” pharaoh Akhenaten), but nevertheless, this book chronicles one man’s encounter with the God of the Judeo-Christian tradition. Yet as such, it’s a revelation.

A captivating religious dialogue for the modern age.

Pub Date: N/A

ISBN: 978-0-9967253-1-6

Page Count: 376

Publisher: Caladium Publishing Company

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2016

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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON

This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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