Crazy Dangerous by Andrew Klavan (A Review)

I picked this book up late one evening to read thinking that I’d read it during the evenings all week this week and ended up reading it before work the next day. I just couldn’t put it down. Crazy Dangerous is one of the most engaging, adventure paced Young Adult novels I have ever read.

The main character Sam lives a believable, yet fast paced adventure. He’s a likable guy who just wants to be liked and be part of a group… any group. He makes some pretty dumb decisions along that end up costing him. Mysteriously in the mix of all the action he picks up the motto, “Do right, fear nothing” off a small statue in his Father’s office and presses on with the motto to get himself and others out of some pretty tight jams.  A little bit of heroism and virtue go a long way in helping him to protect a friend and save his town from destruction.

I enthusiastically recommend this book to anyone interested in reading a well written, well told adventure story. It is about the best I have ever read in Christian Fiction. You can score a copy at for a little more than ten bucks. I give it Five Stars.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson as part of the BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Zombies in your Neighborhood?

Zombies are making a huge comeback and according to at least two Christian authors, Zombies are real!  What’s interesting is that both authors claim that you might even have zombies living in your neighborhood.  Hiding in plain sight. Maybe even looking you back in the eye when you look in the mirror?

Both writers are using zombie allegory to proclaim biblical truth. Each author has his own slant and one author doesn’t even stop with zombies, he goes all the way into figuring out how to fight the ill effects of the rest of the monster world. Both books are exceptional in their own right and well worth a read. I’ll be posting reviews on them next week here on the blog, but in the meantime check out what Amazon has to say about Matt Mikalatos’ book Night of the Living Dead Christian and Jeff Kinley’s book The Christian Zombie Killer’s Handbook.

Check back on December 15th for my review of Night of the Living Dead Christian and a chance to win a voucher for your own free copy.  What can I say, I love to give out free books (and especially books about zombies!).

Oh and be looking for Zombies in your neighborhood and in the mirror, you might be surprised at what you find.

“Sammy and His Shepherd” (A Children’s Book Review)

Sammy and His Shepherd written by Susan Hunt and Illustrated by Corey Godbey is one of the best children’s books I have read in a long time (though its great for adults too) .  It is an illustrated look at Psalm 23 through the eyes of a little lamb named Sammy.  Sammy gets to know another nameless sheep on the other side of the fence and share about his Good Shepherd.

The book is divided into several short and teachable sections.  Ending with a reference to the “Talk about it” section in the back of the book where parents can ask engaging questions about the story.  The “Talk about it” reverences and section are the best integration of story and spiritual application I have seen in a children’s book.  Especially relevant is the “something to do” portion of each “talk about it” section where children are challenged think about their own actions and ask God to work in their lives to help them better reflect His Character.

This was a great book and I would highly recommend it for parents and children alike.  The book can easily be read over several nights.  Though I imagine the book is geared for kids a little older, I read it to my 4-year-old daughter in one sitting (we will of course go back through it time and again at a slower pace).Sammy and His Shepherd is an excellent resource. The retail price is $17.00 (Hardcover), and is available at places like for $11.56. I gave it five stars.

Disclaimer: A PDF of this book was provided for review by Reformation Trust Publishing. They will send me a complimentary copy after they see my reviews.  There was no requirement to give it a positive review, just for me to call it like I see it.

“The Lightlings” (A Children’s book Review)

The Lightlings by R.C. Sproul and Illustrated by Justin Gerard is a great book for parents to read to their children.  The story is a deep and rich allegory that plays on the theme of being scared of the dark.  The grandfather in this story shares about how some people are scared of the light and begins to tell his grandson about a race of people known as the Lightlings.

The book gets really interesting at this point as the story shifts from the comfort of a grandfather telling a story in a home to the magical world of the Lightlings.  However the world of enchantment is short lived as the Lightlings disobey their king and run to the darkness to cover their shame.  The story of grace and redemption in coming to the light then unfolds.

I really liked this book and where it was headed.  The book has a lot of strengths and can open the door for deeper discussion with your children.  Perhaps the greatest strength to this book is the list of 13 questions to ask your kids and scripture references that come at the end of this book.  This helps ensure that its not only a bed time story, but a teaching moment.

That being said, there are a few things that jumped out at me.  I was puzzled why the Lightling creatures needed to be created as fairy like creatures.  My daughter already gets fairies and angels a little confused. I think its the wings that do it for her.  All allegory breaks down at some point.  And while illustrating the run to the darkness, Sproul leaves much unsaid about how or why the Lightlings disobey the Light King.  In my opinion, as an allegory this is where the story is the weakest. That being said, all allegory breaks down at some point.

Over all it was a great book and I would recommend it for parents with young children.   The Lightlings is an excellent resource. The retail price is $18.00 (Hardcover), and is available at places like for $12.24. I gave it four stars.

Disclaimer: A PDF of this book was provided for review by Reformation Trust Publishing. They will send me a complimentary copy after they see my revies.  There was no requirement to give it a positive review, just for me to call it like I see it.

Short: The Path

One of the reasons I began this blog was to become more proficient at writing.  So far its been book reviews, thoughts on famiy, etc.  Today I am launching out in a new direction.  I have found that writing fiction has sometimes help me solidify my thoughts or even bring new insights.  I will sporatically be including short fictional naratives in blog posts.  I have no desire to actually write any kind of fictional work, but to grow as a writer and a thinker.  Your feedback and comments are especially welcome.  This area is new for me and I can always improve.

This is the beginning of a thought on Indwelling sin and Sanctification.

The Path

Her feet raced down the way, her mind ahead of her body tracing every step she would take along the path.  Steps she once took lightly, steps that were once quiet and silent now pounded out a loud rythm through the forest.  The once unfamilar path through the forest was now a well worn trail.  She had been this way many times before.  The undergrowth that had once impeaded her journey was now dead under the continued wear of her feet.  The journey was once tread with fear and trepidation over hours.  Now she easily covered the distance in a few minutes with boldness and practiced agility.

She hated this path. She hated the place that it took her.  She hated herself for running this way again.  She had wished in vain that the path would be forgotten and grow over, yet now she found herself on the path again.  She knew the despair that this path would bring.  Never the less she pressed on, a victum held hostage by her own behavior and choice.  She was a slave running back to a master.

The tragedy is that she had been set free.  Yet, she had figured out a way to create a path back to the bonds she once wore.  It is true that her former master had no legal hold over her, she felt at times a longing to be back under his yoke of slavery.  She had never known freedom before and it frightened her.  So she formed this path through the woods to be in a place that she hated because somehow the comfort of the familiar was more important to her than her freedom or the one who had freed her.

To be continued…