I will confess to two things: I am terribly behind on my book reading goal for the year. During the first half of the year, for reasons only known to the nether regions of my subconscious, I could not make myself read more than a few pages a day. The warmer weather of summer has revived my desire to read. Either that or all the long hours sitting at baseball practices with no other option available. While I am now reading, this leads to my second confession. Apparently summer has also brought on a desire to stay within the lighter genres. No Tolstoy or Rand for me this year, sir. So with those disclaimers, I offer you my latest book blurbs.

The Silver Chair, The Magician’s Nephew, The Horse and His Boy, and The Final Battle by C.S. Lewis: Seriously, how does he do it? Books that go down as smooth and refreshing as a frosty chocolate milkshake on a hot day, but with bits of nutrition blended in so naturally

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Getty Images

one can hardly believe they are good for you. These definitely make my desert island book list. The Bible, Lewis, Austen, and pizza and I could settle in quite nicely, thank you very much. And maybe a milkshake machine if one is feeling generous.

Until the Beginning by Amy Plum: Not sure how many words would be too many to be considered wasted in reviewing this book. I have probably already spent more than it deserves. This comes from one who does not look down her nose at well-written juvenile fiction. This is the sequel to Plum’s book After the End, which I didn’t love but found at least intriguing, I am only glad to know there will not be a third in the series.

The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck: This too was a disappointment. I am a Beck fan, more the man than the writer, but still have found his books enlightening and good discussion fodder. I was curious to learn more about his background and Beck has made no secret of the biographical nature of this novel. I listened to this one (please don’t tell Goodreads) and have noticed that flawed dialogue can seem more so when read aloud so maybe that was part of the problem. Nevertheless, an interesting book but one I was glad to be done with. Will stick with his non-fiction from now on.

7 Events that Made America America by Larry Schweikart: I know nothing about this author. Picked up this audiobook at random from the library. Fascinating book. Loses me at times with the thickness of its analysis but keeps it light enough for me to understand. Love the 51eMFZI3xRL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_long view perspective on the political impact of such seemingly non-related events as Eisenhower’s heart attack and government regulation of food and the 1963 Beatles-led British invasion and the fall of communism in Eastern Europe. For anyone interested in politics, particularly those with a conservative interpretation of our constitution, this is a great read.

The Dead in their Vaulted Arches by Alan C. Bradley:  I have read all the books in this series and will continue to do so. Bradley’s Flavia du Luce feels like the quirky girl next door. Glad to know her but equally glad not to be legally responsible for her person or liable for her often ill-advised attempts at crime solving. The author must be a bit quirky himself to have pulled this unique British young lady of the early 1950’s out of his mature, Canadian brain. Would love to sit down to a cup of tea with him sometime, after first checking to be sure it wasn’t poisoned.

The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn:  Jim has been urging me to read this book, and I have picked it up a few times only to put it down again, annoyed by the poor quality of writing and the ridiculously contrived plot. But in deference to his persistence, I am finally reading it. I say Cahn should have gone with a straight non-fiction presentation of his prophetic insights into the events of the last decade but it certainly opens one’s eyes to one strongly plausible interpretation of 9/11 and beyond. I didn’t need convincing that God is behind all history including our own nation’s, but Cahn lays out biblical connections to current events that are quite compelling. I hesitate to be more enthusiastic for fear of being associated with the pop-prophecy crowd, but whatever your perspective on Cahn’s analysis, I don’t see how any American Christian could deny his call for repentance both as individuals and as a nation.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo: Don’t really think of myself as a person in need of instruction when it comes to decluttering but rather someone imprisoned in a house with five pack rats. I hoped to gain some insights into how best to help them along the path of enlightenment and perhaps save myself a few hundred hours of covertly throwing away all their junk. Little did I know, this book would cause me to reflect more deeply on how I relate to the objects with which I fill my life. Go pick up a copy and call the thrift store to let them know you’re coming. But if you have any good stuff, I call first dibs.

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