We all want to read good books and avoid bad ones. But how do we know the difference? C. S. Lewis helps us here. In An Experiment in Criticism, Lewis proposes that what makes a book good or bad is the type of reading it invites. He begins by stating...
In 2012 I began teaching a course called “Christianity & the Arts,” and in 2014 I published a book on the same subject but directed specifically toward music, entitled Resonate: Enjoying God’s Gift of Music. In the process of researching for both the class and the book, I ended...
This is the first fiction work to be included as our Book of the Month. I’m sure it won’t be the last. After years of people telling me that I need to read Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead, I finally did (the book is a Pulitzer Prize winner, by the way)....
  I got serious about my faith when I entered college, and one fruit of this increased commitment was that I found myself turning into a reader. This newfound passion for reading would end up costing me way more money and time than I could have imagined (and at this...
“Christians should thank God for J. K. Rowling and for her clear presentation of the central values that are at the core of Christian faith and practice.” That’s not my statement, though as I’ll explain I agree with it enthusiastically. That statement comes from Jerram Barrs, in his excellent book...
Anthony Doerr's novel All the Light We Cannot See is one of those rare books that is actually difficult to put down. While most books that fit this category are white-knuckle thrillers that keep us reading because we need to know what happens next, All the Light We Cannot...
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Nothing like this had ever happened before. In the beginning, there was God. And nothing else. Not an empty space and an endlessly ticking clock. Just nothing. No space. No time. Space and time are included under the heading...
Fiction writers create characters. By putting words on a page, the fiction writer makes these characters come alive in the imagination of readers around the world. The fiction writer also creates plots, weaving these characters together into intricate storylines that reveal the unique personality of each character, revealing and...
What makes a good reader? With C. S. Lewis’ help, we have already exposed “the unliterary,” “the status seeker,” and “the devotee of culture” as poor readers. But what makes a good reader? Lewis explains that a good reader has a much different experience with a book than a poor...
A stereotypical fairytale ends with the words, “And they lived happily ever after.” Discerning readers/viewers throw up in their mouths a little bit when they hear that phrase. Get real, we think. Happy ever after is the naïve stuff of children’s fantasies. People don’t simply live happily ever after. We...
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