Category Archives: 2013 Book Reviews

Wisdom of Kammbia 3.32: Favorite Reads of 2013


Another year has come and gone and I’ve read and reviewed 16 books for the blog in 2013.  I had a good year reading and looking forward to a better reading year in 2014.

Here’s my favorites in 2013: (click on the title to read that book’s review)

1) Gilead by Marilynne Robinson

2) Captives (The Safe Lands Book 1) by Jill Williamson

3) Cold Fire by Dean Koontz

4) Middle Passage by Charles Johnson

5) A Mind to Murder by P.D. James

6) The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith AKA JK Rowling

7) Gray Matters by Brett McCracken

8) All God’s Children & Blue Suede Shoes by Ken Myers

9) The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

10) Extremes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

11) The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman

So what were you favorite reads of 2013?

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Book Review 48: Extremes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

What happens when a rogue scientist decides she wants to kill an entire moon city with a virus in order to create her own version of a superhuman race? That question is the basic plot of Extremes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.  Extremes is the second novel in the multi-genre Retrieval Artist Series. Miles Flint has become… Continue Reading

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Book Review 47: The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Has anybody ever read a science fiction mystery? I must admit I love when authors combine genres in their books.  Dean Koontz is one of the masters of genre combining and twisting in his works. The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is the first novel I’ve read that combines a standard science fiction setting with a traditional… Continue Reading

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Book Review 45: All God’s Children & Blue Suede Shoes by Ken Myers

What is pop culture? That’s the one question I’ve always wanted to get a definitive answer to in all of my adult life. Well, I believe I have found a book that attempts to give me that answer. All God’s Children & Blue Suede Shoes by Ken Myers explores the relationship between Christians and Popular Culture.… Continue Reading

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Book Review 44: Gray Matters by Brett McCracken

“Christians have a hard time with nuance, gray areas are not out strong suit.” “Discernment is a tricky business, much more complicated than a checklist or matrix of black-and-white criteria. And it begins on the inside, with an awareness that while discernment is a virtue we should all aspire to, it doesn’t look exactly the… Continue Reading

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4 Responses to Book Review 43: The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith AKA JK Rowling

  1. I loved this book, altho’ it is a bit too long.

    She has a terrific vocabulary and the mystery kept me turning pages. Loved her descriptions, e.g., “His hair was gray and brush-cut; his face a crumpled mass of folds, bags and moles, out of which his fleshy nose protruded like a tumor.”

    It was so good I may have to read one of her Harry Potter books.

    Marge Martn

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4 Responses to Book Review 42: A Mind To Murder by P.D. James

  1. PBS used to have a program called Mystery, I think. Anyway, they featured Adam Dalgliesh stories for a while. Loved them! But I’ve never read them. I think I need to change that.


    • I would love to watch those programs, Becky. Thanks for the reminder. I will have to lookout for it.

      PD James is a terrific writer and I would definitely recommend these novels.

      Also, it is interesting that Adam Dalgliesh grew up as a Christian and left the faith as an adult. PD James reveals a lot of that internal struggle through Dalglesh in this series.


      • Sadly, Marion, PBS has practically done away with Mystery. They have melded it with Masterpiece Theater. I don’t know how often it airs, but when it does it’s something like Masterpiece Mystery. Too bad, because they really had produced some of the best mysteries.

        Interesting that PD James had Dalglesh struggle with his Christian background. I don’t think that came out in the PBS version.


        • Shucks, Becky. I hope that series is on DVD then. I will have to look for it.

          I heard from a theology professor on a podcast about the Adam Dalgliesh novels. He said he had read all those novels and while they were not explicitly Christian….the worldview represented in the stories were.

          Also, P.D. James is a member of the Anglican Church and it had to have an influence on the Adam Dalgliesh series.

          The professor said the later books in the series like Death in Holy Orders really reflect Dalgliesh’s faith struggle in good detail.


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Book Review 41: Middle Passage by Charles Johnson

Middle Passage is the story of Rutherford Calhoun, a free black man, living in 1830’s New Orleans.  Rutherford is a thief, hustler, and womanizer who has lived a nomadic, vagabond life and somehow stayed out being sold into slavery. Well, there’s a prim and devout woman named Isadora Bailey that is in love with Rutherford and… Continue Reading

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