Wilson's Bookmarks

Brief reviews of 'Free Will,' 'The Lion Bible in Its Time,' and 'Crazy Dangerous'

I think I am exercising free will as I write this mini-review (free only within constraints, to be sure—especially space constraints—but meaningfully so). Ditto you in reading it (or skipping it). But Sam Harris—or I should say, "Sam Harris," meaning the conjunction of causes that made him write the book—knows better. And who knows? Maybe you (or "you") and I (that is, "I," not the superficial consciousness ensorcelled by the illusion of free will but rather the forces actually steering me) will wake up one morning and find that we agree. Or maybe not.

The Lion Bible in Its Time
Lois Rock, Illustrated by Steve Noon (Lion)


Many books attempt to introduce the biblical world to children with a mix of text and colorful illustrations. Plenty are mediocre. This one's a keeper. The glory of it comes in the plentiful two-page illustrations, spreads that are at once panoramic and loaded with detail. From "Abraham: A Nomad in Canaan" and "The Tabernacle in the Wilderness" to "Jerusalem in the Time of Pilate," they invite exploration. I can't wait to sit down with this book and our grandkids.

Crazy Dangerous
Andrew Klavan (Thomas Nelson)


When I was a kid, some well-meaning grown-up would give me what would nowadays be called a Young Adult book, written from a Christian perspective and intended to be inspirational. Almost always, such books were awful. How things have changed. Andrew Klavan, like a number of leading suspense novelists, has started writing for kids as well. Last year, I recommended his Homelanders series. Now he has a new book, with a pastor's kid as the protagonist. Like many good YA novels (see the work of Peter Abrahams, Donna Freitas, N. D. Wilson, and Marly Youmans, for example), it can also ...

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