Lightweight spiritual encouragement for confident Christian women.

READ REVIEW

SPIRITUAL SOUL TRAIN RIDE

A Christian devotional, specifically aimed at a female readership.

Carpenter’s (Come Go with Me, 2017) definitively personal approach sets this book apart from others in its genre. Many devotionals are highly didactic or dependent upon the stories and thoughts of others, but each entry in this work speaks directly to readers themselves. For instance, in one entry, the author writes, “Please come with me for just a moment. Just stop whatever you are doing and drop those busy hands to your side.” Few devotionals narrow the divide between writer and reader to such an extent. Throughout, Carpenter speaks from her own worldview, telling of how she awakens before dawn, does chores, works with horses on her farm, and studies Scripture. However, this sense of familiarity may be as off-putting to some readers as it is endearing to others; the book’s ideal audience would be one of energetic, positive, and self-assured women, ready for like-minded Christian messages. For each day, the author offers a particular lesson, or simply a dominant thought. Entries are organized by monthly topics, such as “Memorable Christian Leaders” (February), “Women of the Bible” (August), “Jesus’ Miracles” (September), and “Not-So-Famous but Extraordinary Women” (November). It’s not unusual for Carpenter to reference the larger culture, mentioning chef Julia Child or basketball coach Jimmy Valvano, for example, with as much ease as she references Scripture. Rounding out each day’s message and lesson is a brief Bible quotation and an accompanying prayer, written by Sherry Shaw. Overall, this book is endearing and heartfelt. However, readers who are unsure of their faith or looking for deeply spiritualist resources may want to look elsewhere.

Lightweight spiritual encouragement for confident Christian women.

Pub Date: July 30, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-5127-0513-3

Page Count: 350

Publisher: Westbow Press

Review Posted Online: May 10, 2018

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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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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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