“The goldenrod is yellow,
The corn is turning brown,
The trees in apple orchards
With fruit are bending down.”
-Helen Hunt Jackson
Another month is almost in the books.
That means another list of books to summarize the month.
Here are the highs and lows of September— along with everything in between.
Fawkes by Nadine Brandes
When I mentioned the “highs”, I was thinking of Fawkes.
I was too impatient to sit on a review, so if you missed it, you’ll have to go back here.
Light In The Shadow of Jihad by Ravi Zacharias
In essence, a challenge to the Islamic community to condemn acts of evil committed in its name… not merely the overwhelmingly tragic demonstrations of terror, but the less publicized persecution of dissenters in Muslim nations.
The weird thing is, I had no idea this book was Zacharias’s answer to September 11th. And by pure coincidence I just happened to find myself reading it on September 11th. Strange how things like that happen.
The Class of ’86 by R.A. Williams
A 40-something wishy-washy “Christian” guy has a brain aneurysm and dies right after discovering his wife is pregnant with their first child. Instead of going to heaven, he is given the opportunity to re-enter his life as a high-school graduate and “fix” the biggest mistakes he made.
Think: Back to the Future meets It’s A Wonderful Life. A premise interesting enough to have tempted me into buying this indie e-book.
Unfortunately, the execution of said premise is poor (at times, excruciatingly so).
The exposition is clunky. The characters are humdrum. The picture of Christianity is like a bad stereotype. I expect characters of my faith to be portrayed as fusty, judgmental hypocrites by popular culture… not by someone who is, presumably, a fellow Christian.
I hate to be so critical of an indie author, but this was some cringy stuff.
Anne of Avonlea and Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery
Though a longtime admirer of both the original Anne of Green Gables and Kevin Sullivan’s film adaptations, I have somehow never read Montgomery’s sequels until now.
Towards the end of Anne of Avonlea, I began to fear that the episodic narrative was getting old. By the end of the next one, though, the charming idealism won out.
“The little things of life, sweet and excellent in their place, must not be the things lived for; the highest must be sought and followed; the life of heaven must be begun here on earth.”
Ask A North Korean: Defectors Talk About Their Lives Inside the World’s Most Secretive Nation by Daniel Tudor
Presented as something new and different from the usual defector narrative. It isn’t really, but that doesn’t mean portions are not still illuminating and worthwhile.
The tone within these pages is a lot more hopeful than those I’ve encountered before. The author and most of his interviewees seem to take the view that the reunification of Korea is imminent.
Though I may be a little more cautious in my optimism for this event, it is impossible not to feel compassion for the people of North Korea, and long for their freedom. I am fascinated by and concerned about the possibilities. And will likely continue to read every book about the subject I can get my hands on.