Every now and then, a book comes along that rings all your bells, shivers all your timbers, winds your clock, melts your face, shakes your foundations, and smacks you upside the head to remind you that stories are altogether a form of magic—and if that’s true, if stories are magic, Helena Sorensen might as well be Gandalf.
The Door on Half-Bald Hill is just that kind of book. It’s mythic. It’s personal. It’s tender. It’s terrifying. It’s fantastical. It’s historical. It’s pagan. It’s prophetic. It’s meticulously grounded, and yet gloriously transcendent.
What is this book, you ask. Rightly so.Read More ›
Eric Peters has a talent for calling to lost and discarded things—as anyone who loves his music can attest. Turns out that gift extends beyond his skill as a songwriter. His photo collection in the recent re-publication of Far Side of the Sea: A Photographic Memory reflects twenty-five years’ worth of wandering and watching for fragments of civilization that the rest of the world has forgotten. Here, he gathers them like cast-off scraps and builds them into something new.Read More ›
There’s nothing like viewing the world through the lens of another language to show you how limited your own can be. We can’t ever fully merge two lexical frameworks into one, and our translations often fall short of the original concept. Some vocabularies don’t concisely reach into others.Read More ›
I wouldn’t exactly describe myself as a touchy-feely person. If you give me a 5 Love Languages test, physical affection just barely sneaks into the number three spot. I know I carry internalized messages for how to touch other people, from determining side hugs versus regular hugs to how many seats to leave between myself and strangers on public transportation. Marriage has done a lot to shrink my personal bubble, but if I’m honest, I haven’t always considered how meaningful touch can be when we avoid brushing against each other in a crowded world.Read More ›
If you’re reading this, I think it’s safe to assume you love C. S. Lewis and are familiar with at least some of his work, if not his life. Perhaps you are also an artist of some kind, and you long for that Inkling-like fellowship with other artists that Lewis and Tolkien seemed to have enjoyed and that many of us find at Hutchmoot. But what we don’t often consider is that one of Lewis’s primary relationships was not with another artist but with his very practically-minded brother.Read More ›
In the waning light of most autumn afternoons, you can find my daughter walking a slackline in our backyard. The really uncreative among us call slacklines tightropes, I think—it serves the same basic purpose. The line is drawn tight between two trees and is suspended about two feet above the ground.Read More ›
I’m writing from Princeton’s Pyne Rotunda, a stained-glass sanctuary for students who haven’t finished their readings but are, consciously or not, setting themselves up for defeat. One of the problems is the furniture: this corner has a sunken armchair with a cushioned footrest, inviting you to lounge on the pretense of “focus.” I’ve fallen asleep in this same chair several times before, usually after ten minutes of head-bobbing and the realization that I’d just re-read the same passage twice without understanding any of it.Read More ›
As the closing notes of Jeremy Casella’s new album ring out, I find myself exhaling, my body and mind having settled deeply into sounds and words that evoke comfort, peace, and that most distinct of emotions—joy born of sorrow.Read More ›
I’ll begin with something of a confession: While I enjoy lots of music, and there’s an abundance of excellent artists and well-crafted songs these days, and it’s marvelous to behold—very rarely do I hear a song or album that I wholeheartedly love, that speaks to me on a visceral level.Read more
This Christmas season marks twenty years of Andrew Peterson’s Behold the Lamb of God. Wow. What can I say about an album so beloved by so many people? Some of you were there in 1999 when AP first took his show on the road. I was four. My first Behold the Lamb experience didn’t come until just last year, and I feel like that negates anything I have to say about this record.Read More ›
At Hutchmoot this year I was able to sit down for lunch with Jonny Jimison, the creator of The Dragon Lord Saga: Martin & Marco—the new, full-color edition from Rabbit Room Press. We didn’t discuss his new book, because he was busy teaching Douglas McKelvey how to play the card game that is a spin off from the book. That was fine, because I had already told him what I hated about his book—it was “Volume 1.”Read More ›