Veritatem Facientes In Caritate

First and foremost, I'm a born-again Christian who tries to please God with all I do, including making reading decisions. I'm a lawyer and I like to read about anything.

The Complete Art Of War: Sun Tzu/sun Pin

The Complete Art Of War: Sun Tzu/sun Pin - Sun Tzu, Sun Bin, Ralph D. Sawyer, Sun Tzu, Pin Sun This is really two books in one: Sun Tzu's and Sun Pin's. I only read Sun Tzu. Does that count as finishing the book? I don't know, but I'm going to count it anyways.

Jane Austen's Anglicanism

Jane Austen's Anglicanism - Laura Mooneyham White This book is very academic. But for those Jane Austen fans willing to delve into the world of academia, White opens a window into Austen's mindset. White demonstrates that the worldview in Austen's time and ours is so different, it is almost alien, even to people who share Austen's Christian worldview. The Anglicanism of her day, while doctrinally similar to modern conservative Protestantism, had a very different outlook on society than we do. White's book offers insight into Austen's novels and is delightful to read.

The Casual Vacancy

The Casual Vacancy - J.K. Rowling If you want Rowling to give you a vision of hope, I suggest you stick to Harry Potter – this book is not it. The Casual Vacancy descends into the darkest depths of the human heart and examines all sorts of depravity: lust, hatred, jealousy, and especially pride. The characters follow a course of almost every imaginable sin, from violence to pedophilia and rape. Their sins tear the fabric of their small society apart. And this is in a "good" middle class small town. The whole time, the "good" people of Pagford turn their back on the sufferings of poor people on their doorstep who struggle with drug addiction, prostitution, and suicide. This book is demanding and painful to read, but thought-provoking. If you can read this book without crying, you are made of sterner stuff than I am. I highly recommend this book to anyone concerned about social justice. The Casual Vacancy can open your eyes and perhaps make the reader more empathetic to the plight of his neighbors.

A word of caution: this book is not for children or the immature reader. While it contains extreme amounts of profanity and a lot of sexually explicit material, all of this is done in a way that does not titillate the reader but rather causes pity and disgust. Throughout, the reader is shown sin in an unfiltered way, but the social consequences of even private sins are also shown.

The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914

The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914 - Margaret MacMillan The events leading up to WW1 are fascinating and horrifying, like watching a train crash. MacMillan does a great job of walking through the years before the war, if in a somewhat academic writing style. The book was interesting but was still was a slog to make it through to the end.

Bleak House

Bleak House - Charles Dickens I've never been able to get into Dickens, but this book was different. Admittedly, it was still a long slog through it, but I enjoyed it in a way I never have with Dickens; probably it was the critique on the Chancery system.

Law and Literature: A Misunderstood Relation

Law and Literature: A Misunderstood Relation - Richard A. Posner A tough read. The chapters on statutory interpretation and judicial opinions as literature were particularly interesting.

Brave New World

Brave New World - Aldous Huxley I remember liking this book when I read it as a teenager, but rereading it now, I realize it was much better than I realized at the time.

The Penultimate Peril

The Penultimate Peril - Brett Helquist, Lemony Snicket, Michael Kupperman The best one yet.

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet - Bernie Su;Rorick Kate;Kate Rorick I have to say, this book started out slow. But it just kept growing on me as it went on. To be sure, it is not completely successful at being a stand-alone book; it is meant to be a companion to the Lizzie Bennet Diaries. But it does give good insight into the series and fits perfectly into the LBD's vision of storytelling across multiple media outlets.

I listened to the audiobook version, which is normally not something I would do. But this book is really at its best in audiobook form, because you get the continuity of Ashley Clement's voice. Admittedly, she is not as good a reader as she is an actor, but it was still quite good.

The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God

The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God - Timothy Keller, Kathy Keller I have over the years read several books on marriage, all them invariably mediocre or bad. This book, however, it quite good. Keller recognizes that marriage an important picture of Christ and the Church and that understanding marriage is not a topic only for married people. As a result, most of his discussion is focused on Christ and the Church. He also has a chapter specifically addressed to single people. He points out that singleness is not God's "plan B" for your life, but people are single because God is incredibly good to them and has chosen the best for them. I highly recommend this book to anyone, single, married, or engaged.

The Red Market: On the Trail of the World's Organ Brokers, Bone Thieves, Blood Farmers, and Child Traffickers

The Red Market: On the Trail of the World's Organ Brokers, Bone Thieves, Blood Farmers, and Child Traffickers - Scott Carney An interesting book, but I think Carney bit off more than he could chew. The topic was so vast, it was almost like he didn't have a topic, just a bunch of briefly covered topics. However, it was informative.

Blood Diamonds: Tracing the Deadly Path of the World's Most Precious Stones

Blood Diamonds: Tracing the Deadly Path of the World's Most Precious Stones - Greg Campbell A fascinating look at how the West's thirst for diamonds funds war in Africa as well as terrorism by groups such as Al Qaeda and Hezbollah. Very informative and well-written.

Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice - Hugo Petrus, Nancy Butler, Jane Austen Maybe it's the graphic novel format, but I couldn't really get into this one.

Letters to an American Lady

Letters to an American Lady - C.S. Lewis This little book shows a different side of C.S. Lewis – not the great apologist, but the simple everyday piety of a godly man praying for someone he has never. Lewis developed a friendship with this woman over the course of several years. These letters cover every imaginable topic, from pets and weather to the forgiveness of sins; many are simply an attempt to encourage each other as their bodies decay from old age. Very encouraging, very convicting.

We Believe: Recovering the Essentials of the Apostles' Creed

We Believe: Recovering the Essentials of the Apostles' Creed - Michael S. Horton A good walk through of the basics of Christianity using the Apostles' Creed. Sometimes he does use the statement from the Creed as a launching point to talk about a certain issue without dealing much with the actual statement. On the whole, however, he does a good job.

Lady Susan

Lady Susan - Jane Austen, R.W. Chapman This is a very strange book. Unlike other Austen novels, the main character is really quite a terrible person. The ending is appropriate, but comes unconvincingly quickly. In addition, the epistolary form makes it a little difficult to follow. Lady Susan is definitely not as good as Austen's other works, but I suspect Austen knew that. Although she wrote the book earlier in her life, she never attempted to have it published.

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