Monday, 29 August 2016

Poetic Murder?

Two new books to read and a whole week off work to read them. Pure joy.

Dead Man's Folly - Agatha Christie

I haven't really stopped to read the blurb on this one. All I know is that it involves murder, Poirot, Mrs Oliver and a staged murder. It's less than 200 pages long so should be finished off rather quickly.

The Message of Psalms 73-150 - Michael Wilcock

It can come as no surprise that I would choose this as my next book. The first one was so good I've hardly been able to hold back on starting this one. Anyway plenty of time this week to work through at a slow pace. Perfect.

Monday, 22 August 2016

Sofa Spotlight - The Message of Psalms 1-72, Michael Wilcock

This in the Bible Speaks Today series and as commentaries go is not long or over facing. Despite my initial worry that this read would not end well, because the Psalms is essentially a book of poetry, I feel like I had a worthwhile read. The point of the book was that the Psalms were meant to be read in order and not just dipped in and out of. I've heard this talked about before but never been brave enough to try it until now.

What struck me first of all was how many of the Psalms were about David and the events he faced in life. Some of those events were easier to identify than others but Wilcock made some very plausible suggestions where he couldn't be certain of the exact event. The second thing that struck me was how beautiful the language was. I don't think I've stopped much to read the Psalms and let them sink in. I'm very guilty of just racing through them, mainly when they are on one of those read the Bible in a year plans.

I suppose the only thing to do now is to read the rest of them, with the help of Michael Wilcock of course.

Monday, 15 August 2016

Sofa Spotlight - Mrs McGinty's Dead, Agatha Christie

I worked this out/remembered who the murderer was just before Poirot's big reveal. Little bit disappointed with myself that I let Agatha Christie keep me guessing all the way. But it was a good read and I would recommend it, because this one does send the shivers down your spine.

So Mrs McGinty is dead - as the title suggests and Poirot believes that the person arrested for the murder is in fact not responsible for the death. And this is where is gets chilling because the potential murderer could have been (or been associated with) the murderer of a famous murder in the past. But there is more than one option to go on and (for me) no way of knowing the profile of the murderer. It's that whole, you don't know your neighbours may have been in the past thing. Creepy.

And of course there is the classic death of the person who realised they knew something and was just on the verge of telling it, when they too are murdered. Mrs Oliver, the crime writer, makes an appearance and true to form does not get the identity of the murderer correct. But the more she appears the more I like her.

Monday, 8 August 2016

Sofa Spotlight - Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained, John Milton

These are two poems and one is most definitely longer than the other. But before I go any further I should say that I was blown away by how much I enjoyed reading them. As you have probably worked out, I find poetry difficult to read and so it is not my natural choice. But even though I was worried that the language would make the experience even worse I loved them.

So Paradise Lost is the first and longest poem and is all about the fall of Satan from heaven and his new plan to get revenge by spoiling God's creation of mankind. It's like an extended version of Genesis 3 and right at the end you get an overview of all that happens in the Old Testament. There are parts that are not biblical, probably, but I think it is a great way to understand what happened back in the Garden of Eden.

The second poem is, as I'm sure you have guessed, Paradise Regained. It's all about Satan's temptation of Jesus and his plot to stop Jesus from carrying out His rescue. I liked it less, to me it felt less credible than Paradise Lost but I think it still does a good job of bringing to life an important part of God's plan for salvation. Would highly recommend both of these poems. It should be on your book bucket list!

Monday, 1 August 2016

Death, Nursery Rhymes and Psalms Grace the Shelf

Two books that I am intending to start:

Mrs McGinty's Dead - Agatha Christie

It comes as no surprise that this book is about the murder of Mrs McGinty, and from what I can gather there was some sort of children's song that was about a Mrs McGinty that was murdered. So with a children's song and a murder - what could be more sinister?

The Message of Psalms 1-72 - Michael Wilcock

As I've talked about before I do sometimes enjoy working through a commentary. I've chosen this one because the book of Psalms is a book that has never really appealed to me (note my distaste for poetry) and as a result I feel I know very little about it. So I'd like to understand it better. I bought it a while ago and am just getting round to reading it. And just in case you're wondering - I have Psalms 73-150 lined up next.