I’ve been doing quite a bit of reading lately, so here’s your quick Sunday books section.
First, I mentioned Jay Richards’s “Money, Greed and God” last week regarding a quote from Sojourners’ head Jim Wallis. I’ve since finished the book and I strongly encourage people to pick it up. Richards goes through what the Bible does and doesn’t say about money and wealth. I mention the Parable of the Talents in the previous link and Richards addressed that issue too later in the book (Wallis’s statement was an I-must-stop-immediately-and-blog moment). Richards also discusses the origins of usury and how it’s addressed over time in the Bible.
Richards’s main point – and it’s a convincingly made one – is that capitalism is the best economic system man has created and it’s one we should embrace. Why? Because it has raised millions of people out of poverty – and that’s the ultimate social justice.
The other three books are just for fun.
“Lucifer’s Hammer” by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle is ‘70s-era science fiction that describes the run-up and immediate aftermath of a comet-strike on the Earth. Long before the movies “Armageddon” and “Deep Impact,” Niven and Pournelle had thought through what would happen when civilization ceases to exist. There isn’t a lot of high-tech heroism, and it’s not truly science fiction, because everything that happens after the comet strike isn’t just plausible, it’s likely.
“Mass Effect: Retribution” is the third book by Drew Karpyshyn set in the Mass Effect universe originally created for video games. The novel takes place shortly after the events of Mass Effect II. The story only peripherally touches on the story of the video games and does little to really flesh out the overall universe. The book is enjoyable, and the characters are reasonably well-drawn, but it’s really only average as far as sci-fi goes.
The final book is Brandon Sanderson’s “Warbreaker.” I’ve read most of Sanderson’s books (I think I’m going to wait until a few volumes are out before I start on his reportedly 10-parter) and after reading this, you can see why he was chosen to finish Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. The novel is a story of magic and political intrigue, not unlike his debut novel, “Elantris.” Seventeen-year-old Siri, youngest daughter of the king of Idris, is sent to Hallandren to marry their god-king according to a 22-year-old treaty. What follows is a richly crafted story, world and characters that keep you turning the page. For those of you with a Kindle, the book is available for just $2.99 – it’s worth it at twice the price.