[BOOK REVIEW] Garry Williams, The Da Vinci Code: From Dan Brown’s Fiction to Mary Magdalene’s Faith, 2006

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown was a bit of a runaway success a couple of years ago, and continues to sell well. A number of other books have been produced, arguing for and against the ‘findings’ of the novel (and we must remember that it is a novel), but Garry Williams with this book has deliberately produced a short, accessible book, which may only be a starting point. The big positive he sees…

[BOOK REVIEW] Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life, 2002

Our church in Winchester decided to do this as a New Year study. I was in a liberal housegroup which was half in/out of church – which wanted to make its own decisions about what we studied. However, we decided to try this one – I don’t remember much other than laughing at the awful fashions, the boring font, and us abandoning it halfway through. I love my housegroup, it’s still going, and I join…

[BOOK REVIEW] Corrie Ten Boom, The Hiding Place, 1971

Corrie Ten Boom felt that the significance of her life was not that she was an exceptional person, but that she was ‘a very weak and ordinary one’. I don’t know how many of you have read this book, but it’s a bit of a classic. The first half of the book focuses on the family’s history, how it’s faith was demonstrated, and how they hid Jews from the Nazis at great risk to themselves.…

[BOOK REVIEW] Pamela Evans, Driven Beyond the Call of God: Discovering the Rhythms of Grace, 1999

‘Religion can damage your health’, so the first chapter of this book is entitled (p11)! In attempting to serve the church and our neighbour with all our hearts and minds and strength, we can find ourselves sucked into a lifestyle which undermines our very purpose and makes nonsense of our message. It’s all easy to work the treadmill called ‘church’ until we’re worn out, and alienated from our families. To them we may have become…

[BOOK REVIEW] Gavin Calver, Disappointed with Jesus? 2005

This is a book intended for young people who ‘feel that no one quite understands what you’re going through’, but also for parents, youth workers and pastors. He doesn’t promises to provide all the answers, but to give insight into his own life – the son of Clive Calver (a ‘preacher man’), who grew up with an ‘inherited faith’, and fed up with the ‘eyes and expectations’ on him – abandoned faith altogether. Born 1979,…