Thursday, February 23, 2017

Recent Reading

1. Old Man's War, by John Scalzi. I read about two scifi books per decade, so perhaps should have chosen more carefully. This was okay, and I may even read the next in the series. Old people past 75 can join the intergalactic military and get new (cloned) bodies. In return for the longevity this affords them, they have to fight brutal colonial wars throughout space for ten years. If they survive, all good! You might have expected some interesting thoughts on mortality, the problematic aspects of life-extension, etc. There's less of that here than in, say, Natalie Babbitt's Tuck Everlasting. This could have been a much more interesting book.

2, Economics for Real People, by Gene Calahan. What do I know about economics? About as much and as little as everyone else I suppose. So I took a flyer on this one and I'm thoroughly enjoying it. The dismal science is still pretty dismal, but Calahan does a good job guiding you through the swamp. I'm reading it in fits and starts, on buses, in waiting rooms, etc. At this rate it'll take me all year!

3. The Day the Revolution Began, by N. T. Wright. I've been working my way through this slowly, and by about the half-way point I was beginning to think it was a very great and important work. The book will be challenging to those or equate the "Gospel" to some version of the atonement doctrine. Wright is adjusting the focus, and doing so, I think, correctly. He wants to re-embed the crucifixion back into the story of of Israel and the Abrahamic covenant. This book will get you thinking, and wondering, and checking your Greek lexicon every now and then. Heady stuff, engaging stuff, and I hope widely influential in the church.

By the way, there's a lot of learned chatter about this book on the Inter-thingie. I just came across this, which is brief and helpful.

Just begun: The Shores of Tripoli, by James L. Haley. I'm a sucker for seagoing adventure yarns. This looks like the kind of book reviewers used to call "rollicking good fun." First of a series, apparently. I'm maybe a quarter in and can't wait to pick it up again.

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