Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Forgotten Warrior

I recently read The Forgotten Warrior by Kathi Oram Peterson.

There are a few things I look for when reviewing a book. First, is it well written? By the third page I stopped looking for passive verbs etc. as I was already pulled into the story and willing to go wherever Kathi Oram Peterson wanted to take me. It is true that a picture paints a thousand words, but a few well chosen words can also paint a beautiful picture.

Consider these examples from the book:

“Do you talk to everyone like this?’ I asked.
“Like what?”
Frisk them verbally about who they’re going to see and find out all their family secrets.”

What’s happening?” Panic skittered over my skin like a spider seeking cover.

Both of those sentences paint a very clear picture of what the author wants me to see.

The last thing that I always check when reading a book by a female author is did she get the male characters right, i.e. do the men in the book act the way I would expect a man to act? Kathi Oram Peterson was spot on.

The book was an entertaining romp through Book of Mormon times with a modern day character. Sydney Morgan, a black belt in karate, finds herself amongst the 2,000 strippling warriors. They were not raised as warriors; hence the need for someone with Syd’s fighting skills to help them along. The reader is treated to a believable version of the emotions probably felt by Captain Helaman and his forces.

I enjoyed how Syd tried to explain to Captain Helaman that as a prophet of God he should know that her story is true. To which he responds that it is difficult for him to be as close to the Spirit when he is in the midst of conflict. Notwithstanding, he knows that he can turn to the Lord for guidance and encourages his little band of warrior/children to put their trust and faith in the Lord when things are most difficult.

One minor nit, I would’ve liked a little more resolution to some of the major conflicts at the end of book one. A sequel clearly needs to be written to resolve the loose threads. That said, I thoroughly enjoyed the tale and am looking forward to the follow up book.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Matthew 10:36 - Why can't I get my kids to do their homework?

36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.

(New Testament | Matthew 10:36)

Not that there is anyone in my house that is trying to kill me or anything, but most of my battles do seem to be fought inside my own home. It is sometimes a struggle to get kids to act in their own best interest, i.e. getting them to do their homework, cleaning their rooms, doing the dishes, etc.

How do I create a home where love abounds and peace reigns? For me personally I notice a stark contrast between those times when we diligently read the Book of Mormon together and have family prayers, and those times when for whatever reason we let it slip.

As I personally put the Lord first in my life and try to do those things that will bring me closer to him, I find peace in my life. When I try to share that peace with those in my own home, we are all blessed because of it.

What's your thoughts on the subject? How do you find or make peace in your home?