It’s Sad
Feb 9th, 2010 by Mike

With the passing of Robert B. Parker last week, the community of his fans grieved. I count myself as a member of that community. His Spenser, Jesse Stone, and Sonny Randall novels entertained us for over 50 years. I’m sad when I realize that, if I don’t discover some more of Robert B. Parker’s titles, I have only 16 more to go until I have no more new ones to read.

Should I read them all this year or savor them over several years?

Oh Joy!
Feb 3rd, 2010 by Mike

Our discipleship/small groups moved from Wednesday night to Saturday night. Wednesday is the night Mrs. Major has cards, so now I have Wednesday night free to read. Yea!

Apr 29th, 2009 by Mike

I finished reading The Shack a few days ago. I’m still reeling from its reading. I’m not even sure how to review it.

From the jacket:

Mackenzie Allen Philips’s youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later, in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for the weekend.

Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack’s world forever.

I think it has changed my world, too. I’ve always wondered and imagined what the encounter with God will be like. 1Yes, I believe we will all encounter God eventually I pray that mine will be as wondrous and transformative as Mack’s. In fact, I suspect that Mack’s encounter, as he describes it, is only remotely as wondrous as an actual encounter will be.

When you read this book, you will ask yourself, “Is this really true? Is it factual?” I don’t know if it’s factual 2You’ll understand when you finish the book, but I believe it’s true. It left me craving to be with God on a minute-to-minute basis. I want to be more gracious with those around me. And I yearn for the time when God will reveal himself to me more fully.

I agree with Wynonna Judd when she says, “Reading THE SHACK…has blown the door wide open to my soul.”

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. Yes, I believe we will all encounter God eventually
2. You’ll understand when you finish the book
My Kindle Shipped Today
Feb 22nd, 2009 by Mike




A Christmas gift from Mrs. Major and Sweet Dau Major and birthday gift from Old Dad, my Kindle finally shipped today.

In case you don’t know what a Kindle is, it’s an electronic book. Kindle users can download books from or upload files to be read from their own computers.

Sweet Dau gave me an appropriately decorated Visa debit gift card with “KINDLE FUND O’ DADNESS” emblazoned on it. I couldn’t figure out how to apply that card as a partial payment for the Kindle so I pre bought a bunch of books. Here’s the list:

  • Rusty Nail — J.A. Konrath
  • Night Fire — Catherine Coulter
  • The Motive — John Lescroart
  • Valdez Is Coming — Elmore Leonard
  • The Millionaires — Brad Meltzer
  • Farewell, My Lovely — Raymond Chandler
  • The Big Sleep — Raymond Chandler
  • Black and Blue — Ian Rankin
  • The Prince of Beverly Hills — Stuart Woods
  • Third Person Singular — Kj Erickson
  • Death of a Charming Man — M. C. Beaton
  • Thr3e — Ted Dekker
  • Shakespeare’s Landlord — Charlaine Harris
  • Killing Floor — Lee Child
  • Total Recall — Sara Paretsky
  • Tunnel Vision — Sara Paretsky
  • Hard Time — Sara Paretsky

Thanks Mrs. Major, Sweet Dau, and Old Dad.

Fear Itself Review
Aug 3rd, 2008 by Mike

Fear Itself by Walter Mosley is a mystery. Paris Minton is a black bookstore owner in the mid-1950s, who is a reader and a thinker, but a scaredey cat.

His world is turned upside down when his friend, Fearless Jones, comes to ask for Paris’ help in finding a man named Kit Mitchell. Paris is apprehensive, but Fearless is his friend. He knows Fearless will protect him because Fearless is as much of a brave one and reader of people’s hearts as Paris if fearful, logical, and intellectual.

The case leads to missing jewelry, a missing family treasure, and four murders.

My favorite quote from the book:

“I liked looking up words in the dictionary. It calmed me, because there was no tension in the definitions. Definitions were neutral: facts, not fury.”

High Profile
Apr 15th, 2007 by Mike

I love to read anything by Robert B. Parker. His characters are so vivid, complex, and compelling that I just want to keep on reading even when the book is done. Spenser, a hardboiled but sensitive Boston PI, was one of my favorite characters of all time. But I’m beginning to love Jesse Stone, an alcoholic police chief of Paradise, Mass. As adept he is at understanding the crime solving process, he is inept at understanding his relationship with his ex-wive, Jenn.

But why I enjoy reading Parker is his mastery of dialog. Here are some examples from High Profile, his latest book. These are conversations between Chief Jesse Stone and one of his policemen, Suitcase Simpson.

After an interview with Conrad Lutz, who would later become a suspect in a multiple homicide:

“It means Lutz lied to us,” he said.

“Or at least left stuff out,” Jesse said.

“We maybe should ask him about that?” Suit said.

“Sooner or later,” Jesse said.

“First, you want to get all your ducks in a row?”

“I’d settle for getting them herded into the same area,” Jesse said. Read the rest of this entry »

Oh, Hooray
Oct 25th, 2006 by Mike

Day before yesterday, Barnes & Noble opened a big store in The Villages.

Oh, No. I’ve been tagged
Aug 20th, 2006 by Mike

Mark, Mark, Mark

So far I’ve been successful at avoiding tags. I treat them as chain letters, mostly, mainly because I don’t have the patience to so the work to pass it along. I’m usually as squirrelly as a Jr. High School Boy. 1By the way diagnosing a Jr. High School boy with ADHD is like saying, “There is water in the ocean.” Even if I love you, it will be a long time before I respond to another one of these tags. Only because I love Mark so much, and the work required to pass this tag along is relatively small, and I’m a tag virgin, will I respond…this time.

  • One book that changed your life: The Bible (This may sound too easy, but it was my study of The Bible in college that led me to reject the church 2In my naivety, I equated hypocricy in the church leadership with error in the Bible and begin a search for truth. It was the same book where I found it in the person of Jesus 20 years later)
  • One book that you’ve read more than once: The Book of Virtues: A Treasury of Great Moral Stories by William J. Bennett
  • One book that made you laugh: And If You Play Golf, You’re My Friend: Further Reflections of a Grown Caddy by Harvey Penick
  • One book that made you cry: The Sacred Romance Drawing Closer To The Heart Of God by Brent Curtis and John Eldredge
  • One book that you wish had been written: A really good mystery novel by me (I’ve been too lazy and undisciplined to accomplish this feat)
  • One book you wish had never been written:  Prince of Peace by James Carroll (Completely base and sacreligions. No value whatsoever that I could see)
  • One book you are currently reading: The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman
  • One book you’ve been meaning to read: The Man in the Mirror by Patrick Morley (And an extremely long list of mysteries, thrillers, and spy novels)

And, now this tagging thing means I’m supposed to tag 5 others to post the same information from their library of reading. You poor folks are now tagged: Stacey, Beth, Scoop, Bonnie, Kiki. Sorry.

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. By the way diagnosing a Jr. High School boy with ADHD is like saying, “There is water in the ocean.”
2. In my naivety, I equated hypocricy in the church leadership with error in the Bible
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