A straightforward, interactive devotional meant to help readers reach out to others with messages of faith.

GOTTA TEXT!

REMINDERS TO LIVE OUT THE GOSPEL THROUGH EVERY DAY ENCOUNTERS

A devotional resource that encourages Christians to spread the Gospel through one of most common means of modern communication: text messages.

Not long ago, a Christian might have called their children to reflect on a recent church sermon. Now, they can do the same via the ever popular text message. This devotional encourages daily reflection on the Word of God over the course of 31 days. Many sections begin by introducing a hypothetical person, identified only by a first name and a brief description—such as someone who enjoys boxing matches, a student, a homeless man, or a mother raising a child with autism. Each of their situations provides a gateway to a discussion of faith and God’s plan. All sections end with brief passages of Scripture or paraphrased reminders that readers may text to a friend, family member, or other loved one; it’s all meant to encourage Christians to stay present in their faith. Brooks’ debut is straightforward and thrifty, and each of the “texts”—which is what she calls its chapters—are short, economical, and to-the-point. This makes them easy for a reader to revisit as needed, whether one wishes to share its lessons with new friends or simply strengthen their own beliefs in times of crisis. Each entry reaffirms common biblical ideas, such as the wisdom of parents and the importance of showing them fealty, while interjecting modern touches and everyday examples, including a fondness for sports metaphors. Early on, however, the author makes it clear that she believes that faith is often ridiculed and that Christians are wrongfully stigmatized as intolerant—a defensive tone that’s incongruent with the book’s largely positive message.

A straightforward, interactive devotional meant to help readers reach out to others with messages of faith.

Pub Date: July 6, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-973601-07-4

Page Count: 92

Publisher: Westbow Press

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 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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