Monday, 30 July 2007

More on 'Divine Energy'

Just in case you were wondering, the reason I haven't submitted a longer review of this book (see June post) is because it has sold so energetically that I have been forced to forego my copy, until we get more in. It's true! I did get two thirds of the way through however, and have to say that it is definitely study reading material. Skepp is very precise and advances his subject incrementally, although it can be hard to keep hold of the overall thread with all his sub-divisions. Firstly, he explores the state of man after the Fall in order to show the full depth of that fall. The deceitfulness of the heart above all things, with its desperate wickedness, is exhaustively dealt with. One point I would make here is that I have reservations with his dogmatic approach re the elements making up the 'heart'. It smacks of an 18th century view of psychology, and although I am in full sympathy with his conclusions, I feel he could have got to them more simply. Secondly, Skepp moves more positively Godward in his governing text - 'the exceeding greatness of his power' (Ephesians 1 v 19). This is good, and I feel I'm now onto the best part of the book. It all concludes with a very profitable application section, pastoral and gracious in its spirit. I hope I haven't been too premature in my comments. I know I have been measuring it by a high standard because it has been valued by many whose judgments are to be respected. Without doubt it is good to have this book available again - it is God honouring in an area where there is much weakness in Christian teaching today, self-styled Calvinists included.

Beth Coombe Harris

I have been dipping into the children's section again. This time it is Beth Coombe Harris who can be blamed for the baggy eyes. 'In the Grip of the Druids' is a story of ancient Britain, a land of pagan rites, rituals and human sacrifice ruled by the Druids. The story is set in rural Devon and follows the lives of the villagers there, some of whom are converted by a travelling storyteller preaching the Gospel. In response, the Druids tighten their grip and the new converts are targetted by them to highlight to the other villagers the wrath of 'the gods' when they are rejected. This is an exciting story full of historical facts and biblical truths. Possibly slightly predictable to an adult, but equally could well be scary to a younger child, I think this is well placed in the 11+ category.
We also stock 'The Invincible Refugees' (a story of Huguenot refugees in the 17th Century) and 'Gillian's Treasure' (a story of the persecution of Protestants in Tudor England).

Having done a quick Google search on Beth Coombe Harris, I can see she is a popular author but I can't seem to find anything out about her - can anyone enlighten me?


Monday, 23 July 2007


THANKYOU to everyone who emails us with comments about our blog, including some authors and publishers of the books we have mentioned! It is encouraging and rather surprising to discover how many people look at our site. If you are feeling brave you could always make comments directly on the blog (anonymously if you wish). However, either way, we are always pleased to have feedback.

Saturday, 21 July 2007

Sale Books

Having a shop in the local community, we like to maintain an attractive display of books in the windows in order to entice the locals in through the doors. Sadly (for us), this means that a lot of the books tend to get sun damaged. Happily (for you), this means that we then reduce a lot of the books to bargain prices.
Check out our Sale list to find 100 books currently on offer - first come, first served.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Chapel Update

Photo taken today. We're now waiting for the slates to go on. It looks more like a bungalow than a chapel now! But then again our early Baptist forefathers refused to call their places anything other than Meeting Houses to avoid giving people a false impression of what a church really is. I find it still needs regularly and patiently explaining.

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Unsearchable Riches

'Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you'
What a perfect rest do we get when on coming to the Lord Jesus we take His yoke upon us, the yoke which He Himself ever wore, and which He now lovingly imposes upon all His people. O, it is an easy yoke and a light burden. Love joyfully accepts what INFINITE LOVE imposes. We then are satisfied in knowing that every interest of ours is unspeakably precious to Him: that every hair is counted: every tear put into His bottle, and that every sigh is noted. Nothing can harm those whom He keeps as the apple of His eye. Our one and only danger is, that we begin to plan for ourselves, and thus virutally take ourselves out of His hands. He will bring us at whatever cost of suffering to us, to commit ourselves ABSOLUTELY to His loving and perfectly trusted hands.
Extract from 'Unsearchable Riches' by John Dickie,
(19th Century Scottish evangelist and tract writer)

I started this book back in June on our holiday and have since used it as daily readings because of its short chapters and devotional nature. John Dickie spent the majority of his life in ill-health, and this book contains the short meditations and letters he wrote to friends during his times of affliction. Well worth careful reading.

Monday, 16 July 2007

Freight Cost Explosion

The US Postal Service (USPS) has left us scratching our heads. Without warning the cost of all overseas mail from America has been trebled - yes, you read it rightly. It seems they are now sending everything by air. The knock on effect is that the cost of US published books in this country is likely to increase. It is hard to judge just how much in the longer term because international carriers like UPS, DHL and Fedex for example are swooping in to get a slice of the cake. This should moderate the effect, but it is still going to be painful. Our own intention is to absorb as much as we possibly can on the Gospel Mission books we distribute.
I would genuinely like to be given a reason for the USPS decision. It seems crazy. What's suddenly wrong with ships? Do they want to make their carbon footprint smudgier than ever for the sake of it? Can anybody enlighten me pleeeeeease?

Saturday, 14 July 2007

Off to Devon?

North Devon in the early 19th Century was a miserably superstitious and poorly educated rural community, in contrast with its natural beauty. Here John Winzer was born, born again and became one of the despised ‘Anabaptists’. Not a preacher, but an earnest prayerful farmer, he was central to the work of God in the area which brought spiritual light and led to the establishment of several chapels. If true zeal for God is to be measured, this book will put many 21st Century Christians to shame.
If you're heading to Devon for a holiday this summer, be sure to pack a copy of 'John Winzer', and look out for the places mentioned in the book.
Make John Winzer your alternative for Harry Potter! It's far cheaper at £2.50 and a hardback. You had better get in early and get it from us - we're cheaper than Amazon!!

Monday, 9 July 2007


I'm enjoying reading through 'African Adventures' to the boys at the moment. It's well above their reading age (Matthew is 4, Euan 2), but the chapter lengths are about right to retain their attention. They are fascinated to hear about lions etc, and I'm learning about the Turkana tribe in northern Kenya who the writer Dick Anderson evidently worked amongst as a missionary doctor. The story reminds me a bit of the 'Adventure' books written by Willard Price which I read avidly as a boy, and there is also a similarity to the Jungle Doctor books but with a clearer Christian message woven into it. I recommend it. I look forward to moving on to the other books in the same series done by Christian Focus. The first they did was 'Rainforest Adventures' I believe, which on glancing through looked better if anything. There is a wealth of education here for all via family reading - everyone will take in something at their own level. A friend has also read 'Great Barrier Reef Adventures' and liked it. We find they are popular for Sunday School prizes if those who look out books for this purpose in our shop are anything to go by.

Friday, 6 July 2007

The Rebuilding Work

On this very blustery and rainy day I am glad I'm not a joiner! Those chaps have been up on the top of our new chapel braving the wild winds of the north to put up the trussed rafters... they deserve a medal!


Thursday, 5 July 2007

Doctor Adrian by Deborah Alcock

This was my third book of the holiday last week and for a couple of days, I'm afraid Jeremy got very little conversation out of me. I just couldn't put it down! Okay, it is in the 'Young People' section of the shop, but I can unashamedly say that it was perfectly suitable for someone of my own age (uhem, 30-ish). Reminiscent of G A Henty, this book weaves a fictional story around a certain 'Dr Adrian' into the factual events of the sixteenth century persecution of Protestants in The Netherlands. It tells of the conversion of Dr Adrian and his contact with William, Prince of Orange. The theology underpinning the story line is soundly reformed and there are many moral and spiritual lessons to be learnt through following the distressing events of these times and how the characters involved dealt with them. This book is evidently suitable for a wide age range as Jeremy reckons he was only 12 yrs old when he read it!