Books


83329209Some say mine is the last generation to know what it means to engage in unstructured outdoor play. Though I grew up in the city, I enjoyed plenty of endless summer days on my cousins’ farm in Missouri. My favorite childhood memories include building hay forts in their barn, riding dirt bikes on back roads, and jumping off the dock into the muddy pond. Limited adult supervision and vast woods to be explored assured that the words “I’m bored” never crossed our minds.

Nighttime brought new adventure. We often camped outside with nothing but our sleeping bags and a million stars hanging over us. The darkness of the open Missouri sky may as well have been a whole different world—this Southern California girl had never seen such a spectacular display. I took it all in as my cousins pointed out various constellations and planets, even satellites. (more…)

Great-Gatsby-wallpaper_01“I felt a haunting loneliness sometimes, and felt it in others—young clerks in the dusk, wasting the most poignant moments of night and life.”

The Great Gatsby

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s timeless classic, The Great Gatsby, reveals a mystical tale of a man (Jay Gatsby) infatuated with opulence, obsessed with reliving the past, and secretly engrossed in loneliness. (more…)

In The Hunger Games, impoverished district citizens must indulge the Capitol’s obsession with fashion, food, and entertainment. The latter comes in the form of a reality TV show that forces district children to fight to the death, until only one remains. (more…)

In the opening scenes of Disney and Pixar’s WallE, the titular robot returns home from a full day of garbage cleanup with a little pile of treasures to add to his extensive collection. Carefully, Wall-E puts each item in its place, but a spork stumps him. Does it go with the spoons or with the forks?

Like Wall-E, many of us like to fit things, people, and ideas into neatly structured categories. (more…)

Every other day it seems news breaks about another business going belly up and filing for bankruptcy. Earlier this week Hostess became the latest company to bite the cream-filled dust. (more…)

This Monday, Halloween ushered in the holidays. That means that, along with department store sale ads and turkey-themed cooking magazines, our mailbox is stuffed with appeals from charitable organizations. Each holiday season, World Vision (my personal favorite—other than RTB, of course) sends out a gift catalog featuring various farm animals that supporters can help provide for families in need. (more…)

Earlier this week, RTB philosopher/theologian Kenneth Samples invited me, Sandra, and other RTB staffers to participate in a recording of his podcast, Straight Thinking. The discussion focused on Harry Potter and Christians’ response to this spectacularly popular fantasy franchise. The podcast won’t air for another two months or so, but I love the subject of fantasy literature and film so much I can’t resist writing about it here on Take Two.

The fantasy genre occasionally causes some unease among Christians. (more…)

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