Elmore Leonard's books are so well written that I don't want to put them down once I've started reading. RIDING THE RAP is the first Raylan Givens booElmore Leonard's books are so well written that I don't want to put them down once I've started reading. RIDING THE RAP is the first Raylan Givens book I've read. Givens is a cool guy! His ability to stand up to the bad guys without flinching is only one of the reasons I'm drawn to him.
Interesting characters, a fascinating plot, and an exotic setting combine to make RIDING THE RAP an enjoyable read.
The only comment I have is that the dialogue and shifting points of view caused me to stop occasionally in order to figure out what was being said, and who was saying it....more
Caroline Glick makes a convincing case for a one-state solution to the conflict over Israel in her 2014 book, THE ISRAELI SOLUTION, A ONE-STATE PLAN FCaroline Glick makes a convincing case for a one-state solution to the conflict over Israel in her 2014 book, THE ISRAELI SOLUTION, A ONE-STATE PLAN FOR PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST. She presents strong evidence to support Israel's right to the land, including Judea and Samaria (the West Bank).
One strength of the book that I admire is the extensive documentation that Glick cites to support her arguments. In addition to a three-page bibliography, there are many footnotes - averaging forty-two per chapter, and a detailed index.
Another feature that I found useful is the citing of internet addresses that show many historical documents. ...more
I think it's fair to say that for many people, the Twenty-third Psalm is a favorite part of the Bible. It has been a favorite of mine since childhood.I think it's fair to say that for many people, the Twenty-third Psalm is a favorite part of the Bible. It has been a favorite of mine since childhood. Why? What is it about this Psalm that appeals to us?
Rabbi Harold S. Kushner writes: "The primary message of the Twenty-third Psalm is not that bad things will never happen to us. It is that we will not have to face those bad things alone, 'for Thou art with me.'"
And: "God is the one who is with us when we have to do something hard. He is the one who is with us when we are tempted to feel that the world has abandoned us. He is the one who is with us when we feel alone in the valley of the shadow."
I have found the awareness of the presence of God to be a great comfort over the years, when things looked dark in my life.
Kushner goes through each verse of the Psalm and explains it in clear language and with human life experiences. This book helped me to better understand the Psalm that I've turned to many times.
The reason I gave the book only three stars is that Kushner did not address a translation issue that has bothered me for some time. My church (Lutheran - ELCA) uses the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible. In the NRSV, the sixth verse of the Twenty-third Psalm ends with "...and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long." Kushner's book presents the final phrase of the Psalm as, "And I Shall Live in the House of the Lord Forever." This is the language I grew up with and that gave me so much hope.
I wish Rabbi Harold S. Kushner would have dealt with this apparent contradiction. Does "... my whole life long" mean eternal as well as temporal life? I hope so. ...more
I enjoy reading Alan Furst's novels. They are set in a time that often slips through a crack in our historical consciousness - the period just beforeI enjoy reading Alan Furst's novels. They are set in a time that often slips through a crack in our historical consciousness - the period just before and after the beginning of World War Two - the late nineteen-thirties and early nineteen-forties.
Mission to Paris takes us to exotic places - Paris, Berlin, and Budapest. A mood is created that draws me in to the story. There is tension and suspense aplenty. Another thing I like about this book is that Alan Furst's protagonist, Fredric Stahl, is not presented to us as a larger than life hero. Stahl is more like me, or to put it another way, he behaves in ways I think I would behave - or at least the way I wish I would act in similar circumstances.
The reason I'm giving this book a three star rating instead of four stars has to do with Furst's use of third person omniscient point of view. There were times when my continuous dream was interrupted - I had to go back a paragraph or two to figure out whose point of view I was reading. That annoys me as a reader. ...more
John Gardner claimed that "art is essentially and primarily moral - that is, life-giving - moral in its process of creation and moral in what it says.John Gardner claimed that "art is essentially and primarily moral - that is, life-giving - moral in its process of creation and moral in what it says." (Gardner: On Moral Fiction).
Magnificent Obsession, by Lloyd C. Douglas, is a morality narrative. A young man's life is spared at the expense of another person's life. The young man learns a secret about the man whose death, in a way, saved the young man's life. Knowledge of the secret, and the young man's spiritual journey while trying to understand it, lead the young man to a life of personal redemption through service to others.
""Moral action is action which affirms life." (Gardner).
The book was published in 1929, and so the settings and language are somewhat dated. Nevertheless, the story is timeless. And, using Gardner's definition, this book is a true work of art. ...more