Crispin: The Cross of Lead…


Our family recently completed yet another Newbery Medal Award Winner in Avi’s Crispin: The Cross of Lead.      

I have updated my rankings accordingly.  Like I have mentioned many times before, the following list does not include the works that did not happen to make the list of award winners (but that we still enjoyed together) such as the seven books included in The Chronicles of NarniaHatchet (an honor recipient), and The Hobbit.

Here is the list to date (along with my respective reviews):

  1. The One and Only Ivan (2013)
  2. The Tale of Despereax (2004)
  3. Bridge to Terabithia (1978) 
  4. Dead End in Norvelt (2012)
  5. Kira-Kira (2005)
  6. Shiloh (1992)
  7. Flora & Ulysses (2014)
  8. Crispin: The Cross of Lead (2003)
  9. When You Reach Me (2010)
  10. Holes (1990)
  11. A Wrinkle in Time (1963)
  12. The Higher Power of Lucky (2007)
  13. Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! (2008)
  14. The Graveyard Book (2009)
  15. Moon Over Manifest (2011)
  16. Criss Cross (2006)
My favorite quote from this book was when the main character receives priceless advice from his mentor which suggests, “Because sorrow is the common fate of man.  Who then would want more?  But wit and laughter.  Crispin, why, no one ever has enough.  When I think on the perfections of our Savior.  I choose to think most upon His most perfect laughter.  It must have been the kind that makes us laugh, too.  For mirth is the coin that brings a welcome.  Lose your sorrows, and you’ll find your freedom” (110).   
Honestly, this book has to be one of the most enjoyable historical fiction pieces for children that I have ever read.  The author painted the times for the reader with such clarity and creativity.  My only concern is that I, as the parent to my children, had to step back at times to explain why they believed what they believed and why they acted how they acted.  But these conversations proved to be quite beneficial at times.  Our family discussed our view of Scripture, etc. 
As far as our next selection, let’s hope that our recent fortune continues with A Single Shard.  Has anyone read this book.  Any thoughts? 
Crispin: The Cross of Lead…

Packing Light…

I just finished reading Allison Vesterfelt’s Packing Light (as part of a promotion between Moody Publishers and Relevant Magazine).  

My favorite quote was when Vesterfelt suggested, “You don’t have to go. You can stay home. It’s up to you. But if you let fear stop you from doing what you really want to do, you’ll regret that forever.” 

I appreciated the way that portrayed the journey.  The joys.  The surprises.  The adventures.  The community.  The cost.  The pain.  The conflict.  The confusion.  

We need to know what we are getting ourselves into.  But still be willing to get into it.  We need to know what to accomplish.  And expect to accomplish it.  But be prepared sometimes not to accomplish it.    

What a truly gifted and authentic storyteller.  I would highly recommend the read.

Packing Light…

Why We Eat Our Own…

I just finished reading Michael Cheshire’s Why We Eat Our Own.  Cheshire does not write to the faint of heart . . . and I think he likes it that way.  He says the things that many of us wish we could say but also many things that we wish he wouldn’t.

My favorite quote was when the author proposed, “The further their sin is from my own personal struggles, the more judgmental and callous I become” (352).

Cheshire accuses the church, at large, of being judgmental.  And he has a point.  But in so doing, he often slips into being judgmental (of the church) himself.  A slippery slope.  He sometimes appears to not say such things in love.  But I will say this, he does say such things out of love.  You will agree, if you can fight through the tough teachings and harsh sayings, to read the last couple of chapters.

A worthwhile reading.  I do not endorse or embrace all that he says.  But the book does start some much-needed conversations….

Why We Eat Our Own…