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Atheist Bodies

By Camellia Freeman Book Review

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates (Spiegel & Grau, 2015) The Argonauts by Maggie Nelson (Graywolf Press, 2015) A Body, Undone: Living on after Great Pain by Christina Crosby (New York University Press, 2016)   SON,” HE BEGINS. “LAST SUNDAY the host of a popular news show asked me what it meant to…

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Mystery at Work: Three Novels in Review

By Jenny Shank Book Review

The High Mountains of Portugal by Yann Martel (Spiegel & Grau, 2016) Mr. Splitfoot by Samantha Hunt (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016) Wilberforce by H.S. Cross (Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2015)   STRONG NOVELS IMMERSE READERS in distinct worlds, with their own rules, cultures, and belief systems. The best novels refuse to supply pat answers or…

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Through the Ear

By Lauren F. Winner Book Review

The Grammar of God: A Journey into the Words and Worlds of the Bible by Aviya Kushner (Spiegel & Grau, 2015) The Art of Listening in the Early Church by Carol Harrison (Oxford, 2013)   God’s “I” remains the root word that sounds like a pedal note through all of revelation; it resists all attempts…

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Which I is I?

By Luke Hankins Book Review

Three Poetry Collections Idiot Psalms by Scott Cairns (Paraclete Press, 2014) Seam by Tarfia Faizullah (Southern Illinois University Press, 2013) F by Franz Wright (Alfred A. Knopf, 2013)   IN THE LONG HISTORY of the poetry of religious devotion, one often encounters a guileless representation of the self in its attempts to relate to the divine. The…

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Being Shown the Way

By Sarah Ruden Book Review

Bible Road: Signs of Faith in the American Landscape by Sam Fentress (David and Charles, 2007) I GREW UP outside Portage, Ohio, on an acre with corn fields on three sides and the county highway on the fourth. On our disused barn was a painted advertisement: CHEW MAIL POUCH TOBACCO TREAT YOURSELF TO THE BEST. The enduring letters…

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Racism Lives Here. Does God?

By Lisa Ampleman Book Review

The New Testament by Jericho Brown (Copper Canyon, 2014) Lighting the Shadow by Rachel Eliza Griffiths (Four Way, 2015) Boy with Thorn by Rickey Laurentiis (University of Pittsburgh, 2015) THE YOUTUBE VIDEO starts abruptly. Two Saint Louis symphony-goers stand at their seats, singing “Justice for Mike Brown is justice for us all” to the tune of…

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How Else Would God Enter?

By Peggy Rosenthal Book Review

  The Corpse Flower: New & Selected Poems by Bruce Beasley (University of Washington Press, 2007) Mary’s House: New & Selected Poems by David Craig (Idylls Press, 2007) Some Heaven by Todd Davis (Michigan State University Press, 2007) Apropos of Nothing by Richard Jones (Copper Canyon Press, 2006)   IS THERE a contemporary Christian poetic aesthetic? This question came…

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The Nature of a Marriage

By Jessica Murphy Book Review

The Maytrees by Annie Dillard (HarperCollins, 2007) A NEW BOOK by Annie Dillard comes with extraordinarily high expectations. We expect her observations to make us sit up and notice the natural world—and our part in it—with new eyes. We expect to focus small in order to think large. We expect her lyricism to impress, her language…

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The River Rises

By Brian Volck Book Review

Dark Water: Flood and Redemption in the City of Masterpieces Robert Clark Doubleday, 2008. AT THE END of Robert Clark’s nonfiction account of the 1966 Arno flood, an American expatriate artist offers what he calls “a puzzle, a labyrinth”: “The river’s flooding. And there’s a baby and a Leonardo painting floating down it. Which do I…

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