All my Friends are Characters by Emma Wilkins

31tkq6zrXoL._SL500_.jpg

As a writher, Emma Wilkins spent years interviewing various people.  She decided to interview her close friends and compile those interviews into a book.

The book is interesting and the people are relatable.  Their stories of tragedy and triumph are inspirational.

The only thing I didn’t like about the book was the layout.  She jumps from one person to another and it can be hard to keep all the stories and people straight.

All in all, I would say this is a book worth reading.

 

All Against All by Nathan Allen

51Ocf5PnMRL._SL500_.jpg

In the future, the ultra-rich control everything.  They sponsor the police department and the government.

For entertainment, the ultra-rich enjoy gambling.  They developed a lottery by sending invites to a group of people.  Those invited have the option to decline or to play.  The last player alive will win several million dollars.

As you can image, some of the lottery players start to murder other players and the police department refuses to investigate.

The story is interesting and wild at times.  The hero’s actions in the end, will make you want to jump up and cheer.  This is a wonderful book and I recommend it.

What is the Gospel? by Greg Gilbert

witg_medium.e3byr2evkap3xl5fvsh7pp3j7eabq3fz.jpg

I live in an area known as the Bible Belt.  The majority of the population identifies as Christian and has some exposure to basic Bible principles (regardless of church attendance or religious practices).

However, some Christian leaders fear this may work in a negative way.  People are comfortable with their limited knowledge and never truly seek to understand the gospel message.

I was talking with a friend about such issues and he recommend this book.  It’s just over a hundred pages and easy to read.  However, it is full of useful information and puts the gospel message in a whole new light.

There are four main aspects to the gospel (God, man, Christ, response).

God – God is the creator of all things, he is righteous and just, he will not tolerate sin, and will punish the guilty

Man – All of us are guilty.  Sin isn’t just something we do, it is who we are, it is are very nature.  Because of our sin nature, we will be held accountable to God.

Christ – Christ provides hope for mankind.  He was both fully God and fully man, so he is the only one capable of paying the penalty for our sins.  The author sums it up by saying, “He died for me.  They were my transgressions, but his wounds.  My iniquities, but his chastisement.  My sin, his sorrow,  And his punishment bought my peace.  His stripes won my healing.  His grief, my joy.  His death, my life.”

Response – The gospel tells us that faith (reliance) on Christ is required for salvation.  We are also called to repent (ask forgiveness and turn away) of our sins.  Perfection isn’t possible, so repentance is demonstrated by our attitude toward sin.  We can no longer live in peace with our sin.

If you desire to gain a better understanding of the Bible and the gospel message, I highly recommend this book.

 

All That Remains by Hannah Holborn

513H0aRZLEL._SL500_.jpg

The main characters in the book are a young boy that was abducted by a schizophrenic man who believes he is saving his dead brother, a stressed out cop with major family problems that is trying to locate the boy, and a woman on the run from the law, due to a felony warrant, that manages to become a hero.

The story is sad at times and will leave you despairing humanity.  However, the triumphant ending will most certainly lift your spirt.  The book is engaging and an excellent read.

 

Alien Hunters by Daniel Arenson

51WmHvegPXL._SL500_.jpg

The book series, Alien Hunters, is a futuristic science-fiction story.

Earth is about to be conquered by an evil alien race that has already destroyed numerous planets.  The only hope for our planet is a magical alien.  However, that magical alien is being hunted and must be rescued.

Two brothers from Earth go on a quest to save the magical alien.  They encounter numinous obstacles and must risk their life on more than one occasion.

The plot is interesting, but some of the sciences and characters are to silly to feel realistic.  All in all, I would say the book series is fair.

Accelerated Goal Achievement

513j4aVcc+L._SL500_.jpg

I throughly enjoyed reading this book.  It is full of useful information on how to change your life by setting and achieving goals.

Here are a few quotes from the book:

  • A goal is the clear vision in your mind of a target you aim to hit by a specified date.
  • Goal setting is the process of defining and working towards achieving goals.  It is a powerful skill which, once learnt, is the path to success.
  • You set goals to achieve the things you want in life.
  • Goal achievement is the step-by-step realization of your specific goal — the actual process.
  • Vision is about the future, and mission is about what we will do to achieve the vision.
  • You can’t just set a goal and expect it to be delivered.  To make it happen, you need a strategy that is consistent with your mission and values.  Your strategy tells how you are going to get things done.  In a nutshell, your strategy is like a compass showing you, directionally where to go.
  • The plan will describe the way you will apply the strategies to achieve the objectives, which in turn support the overall mission (or primary goal).
  • A burning desire is the first ingredient of success.  Your desire for what you want to achieve must be so strong that it dominates your thinking, making it difficult to concentrate on anything else.
  • Achieving your goal has little to do with your ability or intellect.  It has to do with heartfelt desire.
  • The five keys to successful goal achievement still apply:
    • 1.  Define your goal in writing
    • 2.  Play your work
    • 3.  Get started — take massive action
    • 4.  Track your progress
    • 5.  Reward success
  • Written goals put direction into your life and empower you to face the future in a determined way.
  • SMART goals are:
    • Specific – the goal must clearly describe the desired outcome.
    • Measurable – the goal should consist of specific criteria for measuring progress toward its successful completion
    • Attainable – the goal should be challenging, but achievable
    • Relevant – the goal must be something you really want
    • Time Bound – the goal must have a time frame or deadline
  • If you are constantly pushing ahead and never taking the time to celebrate your accomplishments, you will most likely suffer burn out.

The Academic Book of the Future

61yNQj+TO2L._SL500_-2.jpg

The cover of this book does not do it justice.  I enjoyed reading it and found it to be interesting as well as educational.

Here are a few quotes that highlight the main points:

  • Books matter.  They contain knowledge, and knowledge, as the saying goes is power.
  • Books are matter: they are containers, crucibles, confrontations.  They can teach, guide, inspire, soothe, and agitate.
  • Google is becoming the most-used research channel.  In such context, national libraries will be pivotal for their preservation role, with researchers access being provided through other channels.
  • The meaning of the word ‘book’ itself will change forever and will never again be confined to that of a physical object to be held, admired, loved, subject to spilt coffee or burning by dictators.  The ‘book’ will be defined more around its function than any of its characteristics.
  • Academic books can deeply affect the ways that human beings perceive the world and interact with one another, playing an important role in cultural change.