December 13th, 2008

Book #55


Book #55
Book Title: The Purpose of Christmas
Author: Rick Warren
Category: nonfiction; inspirational
# of pages: 127
My rating of the book, F- [worst] to A [best].: B
Short description/summary of the book: (taken from his powerful yet compassionate voice, Pastor Rick Warren sounds the clarion call to "remember the reason for the season," taking readers back in time to the most wonderful story of all -- the birth of the baby Jesus. When he was just a small boy, young Rick asked his parents if they could celebrate Christmas with a birthday party for Jesus -- and the tradition began that the Warrens have upheld for over fifty years. Now through stirring imagery and compelling personal insights, The Purpose of Christmas honors the significance and promise of this cherished holiday.
Pastor Warren encourages readers to identify and confront what drains peace from their lives. Warren explains that the way to respond to these peace-robbers is to learn how to surrender to God's will and not feel defeated or discouraged when life does not go as planned. True peace of mind is found by having an unshakeable faith in God -- knowing that his empowering Spirit will guide his children through life's challenges.
Beautifully written, The Purpose of Christmas will stir readers to honor the true significance of Christmas and to nurture God's gifts of love and peace in this world.

My Thoughts: This was a very inspirational read about how followers of Christ can make the best of the Christmas Holiday. It really tells how God loves each and every person and how we can be at peace knowing that. It was a very interesting read. However I thought it was a quite bit on the repetitive side at times which hindered the reading experience. It seemed as if he ran out of things to say and that is why I couldn't give this book higher than a B which is a shame The sentiment is there and if you want to be inspired this Christmas season then I suggest you read this book.

Books read this year: 55/50.

Next read(s): I just started reading Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard by JK Rowling

When Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was first published, I thought that JK Rowling was done with Harry Potter, and possibly even as a writer. With the exception of a possible encyclopedia she mentioned in a few interviews, I thought that we would never see another book from her set in this world. That’s why The Tales of Beedle the Bard was such a nice surprise. Although it’s unlikely to draw any new fans to the series, the Tales of Beedle the Bard does a nice job of giving us insight into Harry’s world.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard, first referenced in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is a collection of wizard fairy tales. Like most of The Brother’s Grimm stories muggles heard growing up, they are all simple stories about magic, with a lesson in the end. Unlike the stories we read, witches and wizards are often the main character, rather then secondary, like the fairy godmother or an evil witch. The five tales included here are “The Wizard and the Hopping Pot”, “The Fountain of Fortune”, “The Warlock’s Hariy Heart”, “Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump”, and “The Tale of the Three Brothers” (which was referenced in Deathly Hallows). My personal favorite is “Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump,” which tells about a clever witch and a foolish muggle king. Each tale involves commentary by Albus Dumbledore himself, which is filled with the clever humor that we all know and love JK Rowling’s writing for.

The stories are sprinkled with tiny illustrations, which were really nice, but be careful if you’re someone that likes to “flip” through books. They can sometimes spoil the ending! As I mentioned before, these stories are not likely to draw in any new fans, but seeing how this is Harry Potter, I really don’t think that’s a problem. Like Qudditch Through the Ages, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a large part of this book’s appeal is it gives the setting of the Harry Potter books more depth. By reading stories that wizard children were told growing up, it makes its world seem more tangible and more real. This book, published to benefit a charity called The Children’s High Level Group, is perfect for any Harry Potter fan that wants just one more glimpse into this magical world.

Rating: Four and a half out of five stars
Similar Books: The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling, any book of fairy tales by The Brother's Grimm
Other books I've read by this author: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

What I'm reading Next: Currently reading Blood Rites by Jim Butcher. Seeing as they've got me on 12 hour shifts at work, God knows when I'll be able to finish that.

x-posted to bookish  and temporaryworlds 

2009 booklist

Does anyone have any tips or suggestions for creating next years booklist? Im drawing a blank on what I want to read. I want mine to be between 200-250 books and I cant think of anything to put on it.
I like having a goal and I think its fun. I also like driving my librarians crazy requesting books :)

Emma - Jane Austen

I have mixed feelings about whether I enjoyed this book or not.  There are times when modern adaptations are helpful and times when they are not.  I found that the movie "Clueless" (seen many times as a teenager) helped me through the first volume of this book, I could completely relate to what was happening as I had a similar reference. 

Once through the first volume I found my reading slowed down, a lot.  It's not that I didn't enjoy the book, but I felt that I really didn't want to battle through the waffle just to get to the story.  This is not my favourite of Austen's work, but I think now I could read it and skim over the bits that lost my interest.

Also, whilst the story ended how I originally expected it to, whilst reading the book my expectations then changed so was pleasantly surprised with such a happy ending.
han shot first

(no subject)

What are some books you've started but, for whatever reason, didn't finish? For me it was Wizard's First Rule, Hades' Daughter, Wideacre and The Host. I made it through about the first 100 pages or so of each before giving up.