Skip to main content

My Top 5 Books (Read in 2012)

I have been blessed enough to read over 40 books this year, covering many areas from memoirs to economics. Most of them released in 2011 and 2012. It has been most difficult to pick my top reads, but choose I must – so here we go.

Product Details5. Forbidden by Ted Dekker and Tosca Lee (Fiction) - a gripping thriller set in a desolate future where the only emotion is fear. It is the first of three books in the 'Book of Mortals' series. What really captured me as I read this book is the profound questions the book raised about the nature of man and his place in the universe. The book forces you to engage your imagination and live within a world so different from our own. The writing styles of Dekker and Lee are beautifully blended to keep the reader immersed on every page and yet eager to know what happens!

Product Details4. Meaning at the Movies by Grant Horner (General) - how should Christians approach cinema? This is an excellent take on cinema as a world view. It is both a theological and practical assessment. It is fair to say the book has radically changed the way I watch movies, but not just movies, but how I interact with culture as a whole. Horner helps us critically appraise the broken pictures of life that are expressed in this visual art. One of my favorite parts of the book relates to his treatment of comedy. Until I read this book the theology of laughter was a complete unknown. A true gem!

Product Details3. What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets by Michael Sandel (Economics) - explores the extent and reach of the price mechanism in our lives and asks whether this is good. It is quite insightful and ground breaking, though by no means definitive. As an economist, I have always known the limits of economics, but to see the price mechanism opened up from a moral angle was a joy. What is remarkable is that though this is a secular, it contains such a powerful challenge to flawed American religious right thinking around its worship of markets and hardcore capitalism.

Product Details2. Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand (Biography) - an extraordinary odyssey of Louis Zamperini who on a May afternoon in 1943, at the height of the 2nd World War, crashed into the Pacific Ocean - after returning from a bombing raid. After an agonising delay, he struggled aboard a life raft – and so begun extraordinary tale of survival, starvation and life in some of the worst prison war camps of the 2nd World War. It is a truly a break taking story of tragedy and triumph. The book is true comfort not only to those going through severe challenges, but also the power of God to restore us from mental torture. 

Product Details1. The Emancipation of Robert Sadler by Robert Sadler and Mary Chapian (Biography) - Over fifty years after the Emancipation Proclamation, Robert Sadler was sold into slavery at the age of five by his own father. A no-holds-barred tale of those dark days, his quest for freedom, and the determination to serve others. It is a story of good triumphing over evil, of God's grace, and of an extraordinary life of ministry. You will cry, weep and rejoice with Sadler. And after you are done, you will long to know God as deeply as Mr Sadler knew Him! Here was a man who really did walk with God! Amazing!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Christian and Technology, A Review

The central argument of John Fresko’s  The Christian  and Technology  is that technology is a double-edged sword that requires cautious and intentional use. Continuous uncritical use of technology erodes hunger for the Word of God, makes us self-centred and turns our useful devices into idols. The book intends to promote proper use of technology by encouraging us to dig into our hearts to see whether Christ so fills us that nothing can drag us away from him. Fresko believes there is no need for us to flee from technology or become Luddites because technology is value neutral. It is not in of itself good or bad. Instead, we must focus on carefully evaluating how we think about and use technology. This necessarily requires us  not only to understand the relevant technology, but also understand ourselves. A key part of this is recognising that we struggle with technology because we lack contentment in Christ. The book explores explores six different technologies. I think the most fascina

I am what I am by Gloria Gaynor

Beverly Knight closed the opening ceremony of the Paralympics with what has been dubbed the signature tune of the Paralympics. I had no idea Ms Knight is still in the singing business. And clearly going by the raving reviews she will continue to be around. One media source says her performance was so electric that "there wasn’t a dry eye to be seen as she sang the lyrics to the song and people even watching at home felt the passion in her words" . The song was Gloria Gaynor's I am what I am . Clearly not written by Gloria Gaynor but certainly musically owned and popularized by her. It opens triumphantly: I am what I am / I am my own special creation / So come take a look / Give me the hook or the ovation / It's my world that I want to have a little pride in / My world and it's not a place I have to hide in / Life's not worth a damn till you can say I am what I am The words “I am what I am” echo over ten times in the song. A bold declaration that she

Today I Learned

The puritan John Miles (1621-1683)   founded the first Baptist Church in Wales. He then emigrated to America shortly after the Act of Uniformity (1662) when 2,000 ministers were ejected from the Established Church. With a large proportion of his church, Miles settled at a new Swansea, about ten miles from Providence in Rhode Island. The church grew in face of persistent opposition.   Once, when Miles was brought before the  magistrates on some charge, he asked for a Bible. He then quoted Job 19:28 - Ye should say, Why persecute we him, seeing the root of the matter is found in me ? (KJV). He stopped there and sat down. The court was so convicted by the content and context of the passage that their cruelty gave way to kindness. ( Source : An Introduction to the Baptists, Erroll Hulse)