The Moving Word

Writer, Preacher, Bookworm, Student of the Word

Archive for the category “Book Reviews”

Review of “Without You, There is No Us”

Suki Kim2

I received this book in lieu of a review by Blogging for Books.

“Without You, There Is No Us: My Time with the Sons of North Korea’s Elite” by Suki Kim is a powerful, frightening true story about a brave young woman journalist who enlists her talents as a teacher to enter the claustrophobic country of North Korea.

The title is from the overall attitude that exists in the country. Without the government, the people would have nothing. This book serves as a cautionary tale for those who desire to give the government unlimited power.  Read more…


Review of “Dancing on the Head of a Pen” by Robert Benson

Robert Benson

Blogging for Books provided me a copy of “Dancing on the Head of a Pen: The Practice of a Writing Life” by Robert Benson in lieu of a review.

Benson is an experienced writer and the author of several books. This slim volume can be read in an hour or two. In it, he covers the mindset, persistence and imagination necessary to the life of a writer.

There aren’t really any new revelations here but Benson’s passion is infectious and writers can find an infusion of motivation here to help them persevere in the lonely work of writing.

His first chapter refers to writing as “the dark marks on a page,” and I really liked that imagery.


Review of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena


As an avid reader of history and literature, I increasingly combine them by turning to international fiction. I’ve lived in the United States all of my life. So why not learn about other cultures?

One day I can stroll the parched lands of Africa and the next, be whisked off  to the snowy streets of Norway. Without leaving my favorite reading spot, I can wander all over the world learning new cultures. It’s like being an amateur anthropologist without leaving the couch. Read more…

Book Review of Trapped Under The Sea

Trapped Sea

I received this eBook in lieu of an honest review from Blogging for Books.

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I’m doing research for a book dealing with the sea. So I thought I might find this interesting. Neil Swidey was obviously very devoted to this project and the people involved. His respect and passion were obvious throughout the story.

Read more…

Review of K.M. Weiland’s Annotated Jane Eyre


“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.” (Stephen King).

We cannot be effective writers unless we are fueled by powerful words. It’s impossible to overestimate the importance of filling our minds with quality writing. Learning from the best accelerates our own growth as a writer.

When we read the best, we accomplish several things.

  1. We’re edified by reading.
  2. We’re elevated intellectually by the story.
  3. We’re enriched by the writer’s craft. Read more…

Review of K.M. Weiland’s, Structuring Your Novel


K.M. Weiland has a passion for teaching and writing. Thankfully she shares these passions with the world through her website and social media. She is kind, gracious and helpful to those who reach out to her for help.

In 2011, she released Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success and the book was well-received. Read more…

Book Review: “The Illusion of Separateness” by Simon Van Booy


by Richard Mansel

A book review is a personalized event, relating our perceptions about what we have just read.

An honest reviewer will keep this in mind and be fair with their readers. Everyone has their own personal tastes and presuming that what the reviewer prefers is what everyone will want, is dishonest.

We are providing an analysis, not an edict. Read more…

Review of “And the Mountains Echoed” by Khaled Hosseini


by Richard Mansel

How does one describe beauty? What adjectives and metaphors do we conjure?

Years ago, I was in the library and took a chance on a novel from Afghanistan called, The Kite Runner. I knew nothing about it. Soon, I was absorbed by the gorgeous writing and heartbreaking story.

Later, I devoured A Thousand Splendid Suns when it was released. Then, silence. Read more…

Review of the “Gray Fox” by Burke Davis


by Richard Mansel

Few people in American history are more fascinating that Robert E. Lee. Burke Davis’ portrayal of him in The Gray Fox: Robert E. Lee and the Civil War will interest any Civil War student. Since Lee’s army lost the war, it’s easy to discount his abilities. However, that would be a great injustice.

Burke Davis paints Lee as a humble, passionate man who loved his soldiers. He agonized over which side to fight for in the beginning before deciding to stand with his state. He said that he could never fight against his own people, so he donned the Gray. Soon he became the commander of the Confederate Army.

His soldiers loved him dearly and their undaunted devotion led them to fight despite horrific conditions. When they lacked food, clothes, shoes or socks, they kept returning to battle for their nation and their commander. Read more…

Review of “The Black Country” by Alex Grecian

The Black Country

Alex Grecian’s second novel, “The Black Country,” continues the adventures of the Scotland Yard Murder Squad in Victorian London. They are called to the country to investigate a murder that takes them to dark places.

Read more…

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