A Gold Mine

I finally finished reading David Murrow’s “Why Men Hate Going to Church (updated)”, after having put it down for a couple of months while I read other books and worked on other things.

The best I can say about this book is that it is a gold mine, in the truest sense of the term. You see, my wife watches Gold Rush on Discovery Channel, so I wind up watching quite a bit of it with her. On that show, various crews move around literally TONS of earth, searching for a few specks of gold. That is EXACTLY what you will be doing reading this book – searching through tons of detritus (to put it gently) for the occasional HINT of something worth noting.

To say I was disappointed in this book would be a statement in contention for understatement of the year, at least. Upon seeing the title and even a couple of the other BookSneeze reviews, I actually requested BookSneeze make this available in eBook format, which is how I read all my books now. I was hoping for something as mind blowing and concrete as Shaunti Feldhan’s seminal work, For Women Only: What You Need to Know About the Inner Lives of Men. Instead, the “research” in this book at one point literally consisted of the author standing outside an Alaska sporting goods store and asking 97 men what they thought was masculine or feminine about church.

And that is the most glaring flaw of this book – little to no actual research to base the author’s claims on. Instead, he draws on what he personally sees and how he personally feels. Which is fine, if the title would have been “Why Me and My Friends Hate Going to Church”. But in purporting to talk about a genuinely real crisis, the author falls flat on his face due to so little research on the topic. Add to this the guy’s blatant homophobia and misogyny – he dislikes any song that mentions a love of Jesus, because it sounds too gay – and you pretty much have a recipe for disaster. Indeed, one of the reasons I put the book down for a couple of months was because of the sheer number of times I was almost ready to destroy my Kindle just to get this book away from me. But I agreed to participate in the BookSneeze program (a truly great program, btw), and I didn’t want to review the book without completing it, so here I sit, having now done so.

Overall, I’d give this book 0.5 stars out of 5. It has enough good in it that if you’re DESPERATE for something to read and can get your hands on a free copy, I’d say it is better than nothing – but not by much. Had I paid for the book, I’d be demanding my money back.

And now, the disclaimer:

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. (Clearly!) The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

New Project: Sons of Thunder

So I announced this on my facebook and twitter streams a month ago, but I want to get it up here too…

After 2 years of political blogging and a lifetime of reading, I’ve decided to turn my pursuits in a slightly different direction, at least personally (I’m still a programmer by day):

I’m going to write my own book. Hopefully y’all will like it. The people who have seen the first chapter seem to think it has promise, and I’m really looking forward to telling the story. Writing it in a month (the initial goal) was a dismal failure, but write it I shall, and hopefully I’ll have it out in time for the Libertarian Party of Georgia’s 2012 Convention on Feb 24, 2012.

The book’s title will be Sons of Thunder, and it tells the tale of how brothers John and James came to acquire some pretty impressive state of the art bionic arms, as well as their relationship with their father Zebediah and the role he plays. Along the way, it will be at times very intimate, with both a courtroom drama and an action/ adventure sharing the space of the same book. I’ve yet to see anyone even attempt this, so it should be an interesting adventure writing it!

I’ll let y’all in on more details as I get it up, but one reason for this post is because I want to go ahead and hopefully find some people who want to advance read this thing and help me edit it and make it better. Right now I am 7K words in on a book that will eventually turn out to be more than likely in the 70K+ range, though we’ll see once I get more written exactly where it is going on that aspect. If you’re interested in helping me out, give me a shout and I’ll get you what I’ve currently got as the first chapter to whet your appetite. 😀

We know I can do pretty decent at political blogging, the question becomes how good am I at writing fiction? Let’s find out, shall we?