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The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here for?
"God made you so he could love you" (p. 24), Warren tells us, and the purpose that drives our lives should be loving God in return. "Worship is as nat ...more
Dec 2007
Dec 30, 2007
The Celestine Prophecy (Celestine Prophecy, #1)
This book encourages a spiritual-but-not-religious awakening. The flimsy, implausible storyline and the not-so-well-crafted dialogue is only a device ...more
Nov 2007
Dec 02, 2007
Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon
An admirable intellectual, Dennett spends the first several chapters carefully establishing the parameters of his discussion. His book addresses the a ...more
Sep 2007
Oct 06, 2007
The Year of Magical Thinking
Didion breaks a cardinal rule of story-writing, which is to have something happen. The only events that occur in this book are the instantaneous cardi ...more
Nov 2007
Nov 09, 2007
Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough
I've wanted to read this ever since it was published in 2010. I imagined it would form a Trifecta of Awesome with Elizabeth Gilbert's Committed: A Ske ...more
Nov 08, 2013
Nov 09, 2013
The Myth of Mental Illness: Foundations of a Theory of Personal Conduct
Seen in the best possible light, this is a well-read, illuminating presentation of a relativistic theory of cultural norms. The author says that those ...more
Sep 2009
Nov 23, 2009
I'm Over All That: And Other Confessions
A friend gave this book to me for my birthday. I love my friends. As for the took me about an hour to read followed by three hours to decons ...more
Apr 17, 2011
Apr 25, 2011
Home: A Short History of an Idea
Examines the European-American evolution of the cultural concepts of privacy, comfort, and the intersection of form and function. I'd group this book ...more
Dec 16, 2011
Dec 16, 2011
The Great Controversy: Past, Present, Future, How Will It End?
This was mailed to me unsolicited. It is 377 pages of small type, the author's name does not appear on the cover or spine but is hidden in small type ...more
Aug 19, 2014
Aug 19, 2014
God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything
The themes in this book are transparently derivative of Daniel Dennett's Breaking the Spell and Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion, and the treatmen ...more
Oct 2007
Nov 11, 2007
Ordinarily I would not admit to reading a book like this -- actually, I probably wouldn't read it in the first place, obviating the admission -- but I ...more
Aug 05, 2011
Aug 06, 2011
The Crisis of Zionism
With his usual sharp analysis, Peter Beinart identifies several reasons why young American Jews tend to avoid pro-Israel activism. They may not be dee ...more
Jul 19, 2012
Jul 26, 2012
Can a Smart Person Believe in God?
One of this book's stated purposes is to show that theists are just as smart as atheists (p. 3). Far from proving this point (by comparing average int ...more
Jan 2008
Jan 27, 2008
Unprotected Texts: The Bible's Surprising Contradictions About Sex and Desire
Worthwhile, extensive review of Biblical sources that present conflicting opinions on sexual morality.

Knust says "the Bible offers no viable solution
Feb 20, 2011
Feb 21, 2011
Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts
The authors describe a "dissonance theory" of self-justification. We don't like thinking of ourselves as ignorant or ill-intentioned, so to avoid this ...more
Dec 24, 2011
Dec 24, 2011
The Geometry of God
Loved this story set in 1990s Pakistan. It's narrated by several characters, most memorably the girl who, blind from early childhood, commits amusing ...more
Jun 2011
Jun 03, 2011
Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment
Heimlich says that child abuse tends to happen in religious groups that have authoritarian cultures and do not recognize that children have rights. Sh ...more
Jun 14, 2015
Jun 14, 2015
Reality Science
The author claims that "three men from another dimension" came into his apartment several times in 2005 "while I was at the computer looking for the t ...more
Jun 18, 2015
Jun 20, 2015
Growing Up With Girl Power:  Girlhood On Screen and in Everyday Life
An in-depth examination of how "girl power" has been interpreted, not only by the riot grrrls who launched its punk movement, but by girls born in the ...more
Feb 11, 2012
Feb 12, 2012
The Atheist's Guide to Reality: Enjoying Life without Illusions
A take-no-hostages approach that I wanted to like but found significantly flawed.

To begin with, take a look at the author's statement in the Preface t
Jan 17, 2015
Jan 17, 2015
Don't Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change
A fine new contribution that explains a good deal about what makes climate change such an intractably difficult issue to have a reasonable conversatio ...more
Sep 06, 2014
Sep 14, 2014
A curious retelling of a mercenary revolt that took place over 2200 years ago. The flowery, hallucinogenic style used to exoticize the "East" (here, N ...more
Mar 03, 2011
Mar 26, 2011
Aping Mankind: Neuromania, Darwinitis and the Misrepresentation of Humanity
The classic philosophers' debate about mind goes like this: do we have nonphysical spirits/minds, or does mind have a purely physical basis? In favor ...more
Jun 06, 2012
Jun 10, 2012
That's Just Your Interpretation: Responding to Skeptics Who Challenge Your Faith
I am inclined to disagree with the premise of objective theological and moral truth. The book is structured around several ideas for responding to rel ...more
May 22, 2008
May 22, 2008
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking
This book makes the case that American culture values extroversion (n.b. How to Win Friends and Influence People) and neglects to acknowledge the stre ...more
Jan 03, 2013
Jul 10, 2013
Fear of Small Numbers: An Essay on the Geography of Anger
All modern nations, Appadurai says, attribute their sovereignty at least in part to "some sort of ethnic genius"--that is, a national identity or spir ...more
Dec 20, 2009
Dec 25, 2009
Changers Book One: Drew (Changers, #1)
This is a book about choosing the person with whom you want to be "Mono" - no, not a romantic partner, but your own identity. This poor kid wakes up f ...more
Mar 16, 2014
Mar 19, 2014
The Evolution Man: Or, How I Ate My Father
This is a book about cavemen on the inexorable march toward technological, cultural, and moral progress. They invent flint strikes and feathered arrow ...more
Sep 2009
Sep 03, 2009
Tiger Writing: Art, Culture, and the Interdependent Self
A deep meditation on the extent to which the individual self can be separated from its context (environment, culture, surrounding people). The focus i ...more
Jul 12, 2014
Jul 19, 2014
Every Time I Think of You
A love story between two high school boys. Generally it seemed realistic. There were, however, no words spent on "coming out" to themselves, friends, ...more
Aug 09, 2012
Aug 11, 2012
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