Book reviews, Uncategorized

Tragedy and Levity in a Time of War

British novelist Chris Cleave has proven his ability to write sprawling, thoroughly researched stories about people struggling to build a stable life in an often violent world—his international #1 bestseller about a Nigerian refugee, Little Bee is a prime example. His latest novel, the wartime epic Everyone Brave Is Forgiven, perhaps his most personal book, is… Continue reading Tragedy and Levity in a Time of War

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Book reviews, Uncategorized

On Adam McHugh’s The Listening Life

I read Adam McHugh's first book, Introverts in the Church, shortly after it was published in 2009. I had known for a long time that I was an introvert, but I hadn't taken a direct look at the challenges and gifts that come along with this particular aspect who I am. I found the book to be an affirming… Continue reading On Adam McHugh’s The Listening Life

Book reviews, Uncategorized

Unearthing our Africas

(Originally published in Christian Courier, Dec 2015) For many years, author Jill Kandel barely even talked to close friends about the years she and her husband spent in Zambia on a placement with a Dutch agricultural organization aimed at fighting hunger. “I moved to Kalabo when I was 26 years old. Nothing but a black-soil… Continue reading Unearthing our Africas

Book reviews

Reading Between the Lines of Flannery O’Connor’s Prayer Journal

The prayer journal of Southern Catholic writer Flannery O’Connor was released a little over a week ago and already the buzz abounds. Friends, colleagues and writers I admire are talking excitedly about having this slim book in their hands. Renowned author Marilynne Robinson has even pondered it for The New York Times in her precise, elegant prose. While… Continue reading Reading Between the Lines of Flannery O’Connor’s Prayer Journal

Book reviews

The Difficult Bliss of Belief: Christian Wiman’s My Bright Abyss

I started Christian Wiman’s memoir My Bright Abyss shortly before Ascension Day, with the hymns of Christ’s rising triumph a week or so away from being sung. The timing lessened some of the dread I felt over beginning a book I knew to be written under a “deepening shadow of death” – the author’s diagnosis of… Continue reading The Difficult Bliss of Belief: Christian Wiman’s My Bright Abyss

Book reviews, Uncategorized

John Terpstra pays tribute to urban trees

Not only is John Terpstra one of my favourite poets, he is also a fellow Hamiltonian--and it is a joy to have him as part of our local literary scene. Over at the Hamilton Arts Council blog I reviewed his recently republished book Naked Trees. Here's a little from that post: Renowned Hamilton Poet Pays… Continue reading John Terpstra pays tribute to urban trees

Book reviews, Uncategorized

Between Heaven and Mirth review for RELEVANT

I mentioned Between Heaven and Mirth, Father James Martin's insightful book on "holy humor," in my recent reflection on Easter joy. Over at RELEVANT Magazine today I gave this book a full revew. Here's an excerpt: [W]hat so puzzles and saddens [Martin] is that those who claim to be in relationship with a loving, joy-giving… Continue reading Between Heaven and Mirth review for RELEVANT