Book Review: You Are What You Love

You Are What You Love by James K. A. Smith

You Are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit by James K. A. Smith (Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2016. 224 pp) James K. A. Smith is the Gary and Henrietta Byker Chair in Applied Reformed Theology and Worldview at Calvin College. With a background in philosophy focused on French thought, Smith engages as a public intellectual and cultural critic. In addition to his published books, Smith has contributed to the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Slate, Christianity Today, and The Hedgehog Review. A Divided World We live in a divided world. The obvious unpacking of this statement surrounds divisive politics or schisms between worldviews. But, our experiences are divided even at a metaphysical level. In other words,… Read More →

Book Review: LaRose

LaRose by Louise Erdrich

LaRose: A Novel by Louise Erdrich (New York: Harper, 2016. 384 pp) Louise Erdrich lives with her family in Minnesota and is the owner of Birchbark Books, an independent bookstore. She is also the bestselling author of many critically acclaimed novels for adults, including the Pulitzer Prize finalist The Plague of Doves and the National Book Award finalist The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse. She is also the author of the picture book Grandmother’s Pigeon, illustrated by Jim LaMarche. Woke Context plays an important role in the consumption of art. Outside of one-off art installations or performances, a reaction to any specific art form may transform over the years. NeverEnding Story played differently in my childhood… Read More →

Book Review: Things Fall Apart

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (New York: Anchor Books, 1994; originally published in 1959. 209 pp) Chinua Achebe was born in Nigeria in 1930. He is a graduate of University College, Ibadan. He left an early career in radio and become a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Achebe was a professor of English at the University of Massachusetts and at the University of Connecticut. Achebe has won the first Commonwealth Poetry Prize, The New Statesman-Jock Campell Award, the Nigerian National Merit Award, and the Man Booker International Prize for Fiction. He was awarded more than twenty honorary doctorates and received the Honorary Fellowship of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He died… Read More →

Book Review: The Promise

The Promise by Chaim Potok

The Promise: A Novel by Chaim Potok (New York: Anchor Books, 1969. 384 pp) Chaim Potok was born in Buffalo, New York in 1929. Potok became a rabbi after studying at Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He later received a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania. Potok is known for his best-selling novel, The Chosen. He died in 2002. *Spoiler Alert: This Book Is a Sequel* The Threat of Change The threat of the new ostensibly dominates the thoughts of many conservatives. At a basic level, the conservative line suggests no need for change. Things work well the way they are. What’s the use in transforming? When religion emerges in such debates, the eternal soul is at stake…. Read More →

Book Review: How People Change

How People Change by Timothy S. Lane and Paul David Tripp (Greensboro: New Growth Press, 2006. 255 pp) Timothy S. Lane and Paul David Tripp are counselors and faculty members at the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation in Glendale, Pa. and lecturers in practical theology at Westminster Theological Seminary. Give It 50 Pages Nancy Pearl isn’t the only one with this argument, but I heard it from her first so she’s getting credit. Statistically speaking, there are more books in the world than any one person could ever read in a lifetime. Your reading time is sacred and finite. Pearl, thus, urges her followers to avoid reading books they find unrewarding. Give a book 50 pages; if it doesn’t grip… Read More →