Review: Songkeeper is both Brutal and Brilliant

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When I reviewed part one of Gillian Bronte Adams’s Songkeeper Chronicles, Orphan’s Song, I reflected on her subversion of traditional YA fantasy tropes, slyly leading the audience into traps of surprising emotional depth.  If I approached book two, the eponymous Songkeeper, with this knowledge of her technique, it did me no good.  I was trapped anew, only deeper this time.

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On Rust and Restoration

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My latest blog post is mostly about restoring a car, but partly about restoring a person.  You can find it on my work blog at StreetsideAuto.com.

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5 Flaws Movie Trailers Should Leave in 2015

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I want to love trailers.  I waste time at work to watch them the moment they debut.  Typically I watch the first two trailers for any film, and then cut myself off until I see the film.  I’ve found that anything in the first two trailers is inevitably spoiled in the interim anyway, and the third trailer often spoils the entire movie.  Which leads me to the first flaw:   Continue reading

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Gild First the Interior

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“He overlaid the inside with pure gold.” – 2 Chronicles 3:3b

This was the first decoration Solomon added to the temple.  It was not an external decoration, where all his hard work and expense could be justified to his people, many of whom had donated the gold themselves, but inward facing, where God would sit.

Solomon had his priorities straight.  He wanted to make God famous, to spread His light to the Gentiles and advertise His reign.  He wanted to build the most magnificent temple the world had ever seen.  But first, he wanted to honor God on the inside, where barely anyone would ever go, where no one would see but God.

We often become so focused on the work of ministry that we forget the One we advertise.  We fight for the lost, but become lost ourselves, in our work.  We focus on the external, costing God the relationship we once had with him.

In that flurry it’s far easier to let things slip, to disobey and dishonor.  After all, we’re doing God’s work.  How can we sin?

But God doesn’t dwell in a temple anymore.  He left that place so He could be close to us.  God’s new temple is in our hearts.  I want to take Solomon’s process to heart.  Before I go out for the day to spread the shalom, I want to honor God in that temple.  I want to be gold inside, where only He sees.

I want my whole life to shine, but first on the inside.

 

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Not Idle, Just Elsewhere

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And here’s what I’ve been up to.

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Orphan’s Song: An Unexpected Weight

71c73aRqnMLEven newcomers to the fantasy genre bring some experience with them.  We’ve been awash in fairy tales since before we could understand language.  We all know Narnia, or at least a Narnia, some other world, both like and unlike our own, in which our imagination can stretch its legs.  And there’s a definite value to revisiting those tropes, returning to the Lamp Post in the woods as for the first time.

When I picked up Orphan’s Song, book one of The Songkeeper Chronicles by Gillian Bronte Adams, I thought that’s what I was getting into.  I was soon pleasantly disillusioned.

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The Gift of a Year

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Let’s briefly recap Sunday.

I woke up on time, fully rested, and hung out with Jesus for a while, one on one.  I spent the rest of the morning with my vibrant, joyful church, The Cause KC.  Intending to meet some friends for lunch, I went to Jack Stack Barbecue in the Crossroads, where I randomly met Jay Leno.

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