the advocate | book review

I’ve always been a great historical fiction fan.  I just finished this audiobook that pretty much blew my mind and made it to my list of top ten favorite historical fiction novels.

TheAdvocate

The Advocate by Randy Singer

Rating: 5.0 – 5.0

My Thoughts:

In books of Luke and Acts, the two-part piece of work written by physician/evangelist Luke, are addressed to Theophilus (Luke 1:3,4; Acts 1:1).  The Bible doesn’t say anything about Theophilus but it is generally believed that he was a benefactor of Luke and Paul.  Beyond this, there are only theories.  One of those theories is that Theophilus was the lawyer that represented Paul during his trial before Nero and that Luke wrote the books of Luke and Acts so he would know the facts as he prepared for the trial and he would “know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed” Luke 1:4.  It is upon this theory that Randy Singer tells his story.

Singer tells the story of a man who not only witnesses but plays a role in the trials of both Jesus of Nazareth and the apostle Paul.  It is an epic tale and that put me in mind of Wallace’s Ben Hur and reminded me of my favorite book from the 8th grade, The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare (which I now feel like re-reading!). He expertly paints a picture of Roman societal, religious, and political life as you follow the experiences of a man who must make sense of what truth really is as Rome meets her decline and a new religion is born.  It was super educational without being textbook-y, just as a good historical piece should be.

About halfway through the story, I wondered how much more story Singer could possibly tell.  I was not expecting what was to come.  You know the feeling you get at the end of a long, epic movie?  You wonder how things could take such a turn, how the character’s life in the beginning could be so diametrically different from his life at the end?  Your emotions get played and you wonder how you’d deal with it if were your story.  Yeah, that’s how I felt at the end of this book.  Bittersweetness isn’t quite the word to use but it’s the best I can come up with.  It was beautiful and horrible and real.

You should read it.  For real.  Go to Audible and download it or Amazon and get the Kindle or print copy.  I actually got my audio copy from ChristianAudio.

This will definitely be on my list of favorite books read this year, I can’t recommend more highly!  Seriously, read it.  You won’t regret it!

Happy reading, y’all!

This book counts towards the following challenges:

platform | book review

Ever feel like you have something to share with the world but you’re not exactly sure how to go about it? We live in a media saturated society and it’s really easy to get lost in the shuffle. Well this past month I listened to a book that you might be interested in. It has definitely impacted my direction as a blogger.

Platform

Platform by Michael Hyatt

Rating: 5.0 – 5.0

My Thoughts: 

So, you may know that I’m a lover of lists. I like things set out in bullet points or numbered items that are easy to scan, breakdown, organize and take in. This is one of those kinds of books. Michael Hyatt, former CEO of Thomas Nelson, speaks from his expert knowledge of the publishing world and his personal brand building experience and gives step-by-step counsel on what branding is, why it’s important and why you need to do it if you want to be heard in this noisy world. If you’ve got a business or a ministry or you’re a creative who just wants to gather a following, this book is for you. Seriously.

It’s not a message for everyone but for a blogger like myself who’d like to spend my life doing work that I love, it was perfect. If you think that this book might be something you’d be interested in, here’s what you need to do:

Go to MichaelHyatt.com and see what he’s all about. Seriously, it’s a great site.

Go to Audible.com and download Platform and listen to it. Seriously, it’s a great book!

Or go to Amazon and buy a print copy. Seriously, I’m going to get one for my shelves, it was that good and I need it for reference.

I’m now a huge Michael Hyatt/Platform fan and I think some of you, dear readers might want to check out what all the fuss is about! It may change your life too :)

Happy reading, y’all!

beezus and ramona | review

I was shopping Audible today, trying to figure out what to spend my monthly credit on when I came across the Ramona Quimby Audio Collection.  I know I’m in my twenties and all but you have to understand, I LOVED Beverly Cleary books when I was growing up and here was a $40 collection of all 8 Ramona books available to me for 1 Audible credit!

I got it.

I finished the first two books while weeding the garden beds.

I should have been listening to something else.  Something more…mature.  But it was sooooo sweet revisiting Klickitat street again, it was worth it!  I have a feeling I’m going to finish this collection pretty quickly!

912441Beezus and Ramona by Beverly Cleary

Rating: 5.0 – 5.0

My Thoughts:

I don’t remember how old I was when I first listened to this audiobook but I’ve always loved it.  It gains a new kind of precious when you’re an adult. You gain a new kind of appreciation because you better understand childhood and you remember what it was like to be a child.  As an older sister, I can totally relate to Beezus Quimby.  But since you know what’s going on in Ramona’s little, imaginative head, you can’t help but love her and her exasperating ways.

I absolutely love the way Cleary tells her stories.  She connects events and makes things come full circle.  The way the applesauce incident ties in with the surprise party.  The way Beezus’ feelings about her relationship with Ramona and her admiration of the relationship between her mother and Aunt Beatrice.  They’re quite simple really but they’re touching and sweet and homey the way a children’s book should be.

And I must say, Stockard Channing’s reading of the Ramona books is superb and if there is another audiobook production of these stories, I will not ever listen to them cause no one can narrate these books the way she can!

I have 7 more books to go so I’ll have plenty more to write about Ramona in my next several posts!

Happy reading y’all!

This book counts towards the following challenges: