October 23rd, 2013
I have not released any podcasts on this site or my other site for an extended period due to my suffering through a case of bronchitis. I decided not to subject anyone to what was left of my voice until I had recovered. I will be releasing some podcasts this week and I did continue to prepare reviews for this site. I will likely do a few a week until I have made up for the lost time.
August 27th, 2013
Podcast: Play in new window
I originally began the Christian Book Reviews website in October 2005 for the purpose of reviewing books of interest to serious Christians. The angle was always upon supporting those who upheld the historic Christian faith and making fellow Christians aware of books dealing with issues either substantial or controversial. After about five years, the site basically went dormant and I removed many of the reviews as I did not necessarily have the same opinion as when they were first posted. I thought it best to take all the reviews down until I could decide the future of the site. After a few false starts, I have decided to have the site return as a podcast site where reviews will be presented in both audio and printed form.
For the foreseeable future, I plan on a weekly podcast (probably posted on Mondays) that will mix both new reviews and reviews I had done in the past in a reworked form. You may on occasion note the newer books may focus on a particular topic as it may be one of interest to me at the moment. However, I will attempt to not be too negligent of any one issue.
Since I wish to review books of importance to Christians, this will also mean taking a look at some anti-Christian material that Christians may encounter. While they will obviously receive less favorable reviews, they can be judged among themselves by the fairness of their treatment and the quality of their arguments.
For the most part, the reviews will focus upon works dealing with topics relating to Christian theology and apologetics that are accessible to serious Christians. As a rule, I will not review “Christian self-help” books and Christian fiction. While there may be excellent books in those areas, I have little interest in them and they will not appear here. I am sure those interested will find excellent reviews on such topics elsewhere.
When reviewing books, there are a number of factors that will come into play. The first is scope. A book aimed at introducing important concepts to the Christian in the pews is going to necessarily not be as thorough as one for more advanced readers. For example, N. T. Wright has written very imposing tomes on the origins of Christianity but also has written books (sometimes under the name “Tom Wright”) to help assist those less advanced in their understanding of Christian theology with an explanation of the fundamental concepts of Christian belief. It would be absurd to judge these two books by the same scale. Thus, the intended audience must be part of any evaluation.
Besides taking the level of readership into consideration, we must, of course, consider the quality. Does the book make a strong case for its position? Are possible objections fairly considered? Does the author treat those who disagree fairly? Such determinations must come down to someone’s opinion – in this case mine. I do not claim infallibility in my reviews and you are free to disagree. When the books are reviewed, they will be given a rating from a high of 5 stars to a low of 0 stars representing excellent, very good, good, average, poor, and worthless.
The scripts of each podcast are available at the website christianbookreviews.net. Links will also be given at the site to interviews I have found for authors of Christian books. I hope you will find these podcasts and the site informative and a help in your Christian walk.