While other "Wimpy Kid" books made Greg Heffley into a manipulative brat by having him deceive and take advantage of others (poor Rowley), this book rWhile other "Wimpy Kid" books made Greg Heffley into a manipulative brat by having him deceive and take advantage of others (poor Rowley), this book returns to the series' original brilliance with hilarity that doesn't demean. "The Long Haul" is one of the best in the series, and I admit to laughing out loud at a bunch of different parts in the book....more
So much (well, pretty much all) of my New Testament studies were limited to what ultimately are cold, hard facts. This scripture means this. This evenSo much (well, pretty much all) of my New Testament studies were limited to what ultimately are cold, hard facts. This scripture means this. This event probably happened around this time. The New Testament was recorded mostly in this language, and so on.
Yes, I consider myself a disciple of Jesus Christ. Yes, I love him for his example and his sacrifice for me. Yes, I've marveled at the wisdom of his parables. Yes, I've felt God's power telling me that Jesus is my savior. But I still feel like there's this distance between me and the text. And why not? It's centuries old, and it's been translated and copied and re-translated and re-copied over and over. There's bound to be a gap between us.
Then I read this book--this work of fiction that tries and succeeds in making the places, people, and events in the Gospels human and real and relatable. The gap gets bridged, and I felt like I was there, that I finally knew and really loved these people I've read about my entire life.
James Goldberg's prose is exquisite; some of the best words on paper I've ever read, and I don't exaggerate. This is a book I will read over and over just to relish the metaphors, the poetry, and the details about Jewish custom, Holy Land geography, and the Word of God made flesh.
Not every event in the Gospels is included, but no matter. You'll recognize the key events as being faithful to the scriptures, and your soul will be happy at your decision to read these "five books of Jesus."...more
The book's prose was descriptive and vivid without being over the top. The characters were all well written. You adore Zu, roll your eyes at Chubs (but secretly find his grouchiness amusing), admire Liam's strength, and feel so sorry for Ruby. Parts of this story were heartbreaking, parts were uplifting, parts were cheesy, but I had a hard time putting this book down. I wasn't a huge fan of the mushy parts, but even those weren't as bad as they could have been. The story has a couple of great scenes (why Ruby gets taken to Thurmond) and twists (the last couple of chapters) that wrench your heart right out of your ribcage, which is what makes it great. Granted, this isn't a perfect book. I thought Ruby was a little too smart/wise for having spent 6 years in a concentration camp starting when she was 10. The beginning of the book jumped around quite a bit, and I was a bit confused for the first three or four chapters. But that didn't stop me from devouring this book, and I can't wait for the next in the series....more
I wanted to both punch and hug Stephen King by the time I finished this book. It was awesome, it was maddening, it was brilliant, it had so many cop-oI wanted to both punch and hug Stephen King by the time I finished this book. It was awesome, it was maddening, it was brilliant, it had so many cop-outs. But as the pinnacle (get it?) of the Dark Tower series, I have to say I really enjoyed this book. Four stars instead of five for pissing me off so many times....more
Not my favorite of the series. The love story read like a harlequin romance at times, and I wish King had explained better why Roland chose the TowerNot my favorite of the series. The love story read like a harlequin romance at times, and I wish King had explained better why Roland chose the Tower over Susan. The way the Tick-Tock Man was dispatched at the end seemed like lazy writing. I'm on to book 5. Here's hoping it gets better....more
**spoiler alert** The "prequel" to the The Maze Runner was overall kind of meh. Besides the two main male characters, Mark and Alec, I had a hard time**spoiler alert** The "prequel" to the The Maze Runner was overall kind of meh. Besides the two main male characters, Mark and Alec, I had a hard time caring about what happened to the rest of the group. I wanted Dashner to describe more of the post-apocalyptic world Mark inhabited. Hopefully there will be another book that can better link this work to the Maze Runner. The lack of connection was frustrating. We never get a good idea about how Thomas and Teresa fit into all of this.
Warning: Spoilers ahead!
What I liked: Writing from the perspective of someone coming down with the Flare.
Descriptions about the post-flare world, Manhattan especially.
What I didn't like: Not enough back story about the rise of the Post-Flare Coalition and how it ended up in Alaska. I can forgive this, though, because that would be a lot to explain.
The first act was really, really slow, and the plot seemed to drag on and on until the group started heading for the berg station.
The violence was borderline over-the-top. I did not enjoy this aspect of the book, and I'm one who can tolerate a lot of violence.
Some of the ways the protagonists escape the cranks, particularly in the basement in Asheville. I had a hard time believing all the cranks simply listened to Trina for no apparent reason....more