The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri

Dante’s classic fourteenth century poem is really three books in one, each describing the abode of those who have departed from this world. Inferno, describing the horrors of hell, was the most interesting to me, and has probably shaped the world’s view of hell more than the Bible has. Purgatoiro depicts purgatory, that once again […]

The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown

Dan Brown tells a good story and everyone loves a mystery. Put these ingredients together, mix in a bit of history, ancient and secret rituals, claim that your novel is based on truth, and, oh yes, scandalize Christ in the process, and you have the makings of a runaway best seller. The premise of Brown’s […]

The Call of the Wild / The Sea-Wolf by Jack London

The Call of the Wild is far too well known to need review. If you like adventure stories with animals as lead characters few have surpassed London, his best being The Call of the Wild (with White Fang a close second). The Sea-wolf is almost as good as London’s animal stories, and of a similar […]

The Book of Virtues by William J. Bennett

This 800-page volume is a collection of stories, poems, nursery rhymes, myths, fairy tales and short biographies designed to encourage moral conviction in a society that no longer places much store in morals or convictions. There are ten chapters, each dealing with a separate virtue: Self-discipline, compassion, responsibility, friendship, work, courage, perseverance, honesty, loyalty, and […]

Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs

When I was a child my father instilled a passion for reading within me by telling stories based on books he had read. The most memorable tale was that of Tarzan of the Apes . Perhaps my love of reading can be traced back to the fictional story of a young man swinging through the […]

Tales of the Kingdom by David and Karen Mains

Tales of the Kingdom at any given point reminds the reader of The Wizard of Oz, Aesop’s Fables, Arabian Knights, Chronicles of Narnia or any number of Disney’s children’s classics. Tales of the Kingdom is comprised of a dozen short, interconnected, fantasy stories directed at children. Like Aesop’s Fables, each tale ends with a moral. […]

Paradise Lost by John Milton

The four horsemen of the poetic world are considered to be Homer, Dante, Shakespeare and John Milton. Milton’s poetry is not as dynamic as Homer’s, as hair-raising as Dante’s or as versatile as Shakespeare’s, but for my money (whatever that is worth) give me Milton. Perhaps it is the subject matter. Homer wrote of gods […]

Nicolae by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

Unfortunately, having now read Nicolae, I am convinced that our boys should have stopped after Triblation Force. Their writing is steadily going down hill — and it would appear that they are planning a number of sequels. Nicolae did start out better with a great deal of action, and gratefully, the poorly written romance was […]

Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre

No, Nausea is not a description of the feeling we get at tax season; it is Sartre’s indictment of life. To Existentialist philosopher Sartre, Nausea occurs when we come to grips with the fact that we do indeed exist, but it makes no difference (p. 122). Sartre’s summary of life is, “Every existing thing is […]

Lord Foulgrin’s Letters by Randy Alcorn

That Alcorn would even attempt to copy C. S. Lewis’ classic Screwtape Letters says something about the man’s courage and confidence. Alcorn does not ascend to Lewis’ level, perhaps no one ever will, but in truth he does a good job. It is an intriguing approach to endeavor to view our lives from the vantage […]