A Short Walk to the Edge of Life

short walkI think most people like the story of the over comer, the one who achieves despite having the odds staked against them. A Short Walk to the Edge of Life is such a story. Scott Hubbartt tells his story of survival, of overcoming what appears to be nearly impossible odds and beating both the rugged terrain of the Andes and the poor decisions that lead him there.

The beauty of this book is that even though the reader knows how the story ends (the subtitle lets you know he survives), I was still engaged by the situations he faced, how close he came to not making it out and all he endured. I found myself wondering how I might respond if I were in the same situation.  Hubbartt’s background and experience were a help to him, but he also had to make some tough choices during this experience.  Could I suck water from clay through a pair of my own underwear?  Not sure I would have thought about that.

Hubbartt shares his thoughts as he dealt with not knowing if he would make it out alive. He writes the elation of being rescued and the regret he felt if he wasn’t able to survive. He also writes candidly about his crying out to God and the emotions that he experienced.

While sometimes we tend to modify past events (to make ourselves look better), he points very clearly to his own poor choices and pride that put him into the life-threatening situation.  He places all the blame on himself for being where he was and also gives all the credit to God for rescuing Him and His miraculous provision.

A Short Walk to the Edge of Life was a good read and speaks to how God can bring good out of bad situations.  If you like stories of survival and the seeing someone overcome, you would enjoy this book.

Hunger Games…finally

hunger gamesI’ve finally got around to reading The Hunger Games. The books have been sitting on our bookshelf for several months now and have already been consumed by the two high school/junior high readers in our house. I finally got caught up on the other books I wanted to read and got started on the trilogy.

I finished the first book in about a week and found it to be both captivating and disturbing. The idea that two dozen kids were put in an arena to kill each other until only one survives is a chilling premise. Yet I was wrapped up in the story when Katniss ended up being chosen in the reaping. (In case there are those who haven’t read the book, I don’t want to reveal many details).

One of the things I took away from the story was how the author depicted life in a society very different from ours. We are concerned about the rights of the individual and doing what we can to assure things are fair. In the world of The Hunger Games that is definitely not the case. In the setting of the book, those in power have all the power. The actual Hunger Games are a flexing of their muscle to show they are in control of the citizens.

I’ve already started into the second book and curious how the story will unfold.

What is your take on The Hunger Games?

The Fourth Fisherman – a review

The story of The Fourth Fisherman weaves together the story Joe Kissack, a man in the US, with three fisherman from Mexico who are lost at sea for months and survive.

Both stories standing alone would make for compelling reading.  Joe tells his story of success in business, but struggles in his personal life, including his marriage and relationship with God. The account of the fishermen, how they were adrift at sea and managed to survive for such a long time draws you in and you causes you to turn the page to see what happens next.

The combining of these two stories makes for unique reading, especially when you discover the obstacles that Joe had to overcome to meet the fishermen face to face.

As Joe says in the book, it is not just about two stories; it is one story – God’s story.   It is God’s story of forgiveness, rescue and God’s involvement in the lives of His people.

The Fourth Fisherman will not only move readers with the facts of the story, but also challenge readers with the faith displayed by the characters in the book.  Knowing that these were real events that happened to real people will challenge the reader to examine how he/she would respond in a similar situation.

This book is a good read and worth your time.

(I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review)