Thursday, February 29, 2024

"Murder at Midnight" by Faith Martin

Former DI Hillary Greene, now a civilian working with the Thames Valley Police on cold cases, is back from two weeks of vacation. She needed it, after that close call with the stalker in the previous three mysteries. She spent one week with her boss, who’s becoming something more than a love interest, and the second week on her own in Spain. 

Now she’s back in the office, with two new team members. One is a sociology student who dresses in Goth style, and the other is Boy Wonder – an entrepreneur who drives a Jaguar and has more money that the police force put together. His reason for joining the force is “to give something back to society.” Well, yes, but Hillary isn’t buying it.


The new cold concerns the murder of an interior designer at an end-of-the-millennium party in 1999. Everyone liked him. He had no enemies, or skeletons in his closet. He did great work for his clients. No one gained financial benefits from his death. Everybody misses him.


Faith Martin

It’s a tough case for Hillary and her team to crack. And she has to keep a close eye on Boy wonder and what he might be up to, like why he hacked into her office computer after hours (and he doesn’t know he got caught). 


Murder at Midnight is the 15th DI Hillary Greene mystery, and it’s a corker. You keep thinking author Faith Martin had to come up with a mediocre one at some point, but so far, across 15 books, she hasn’t missed a beat.


In addition to the DI Hillary Greene novels, Martin (a pen name for Jacquie Walton) has also published the Ryder and Loveday novels as well as the Jenny Sterling mysteries. Under the name Joyce Cato, she has published several non-series detective stories. Both Cato and Martin are also pen names for Walton. (Walton has another pen name as well – Maxine Barry, under which she wrote 14 romance novels.) A native of Oxford, she lives in a village in Oxfordshire.




Murder on the Oxford Canal by Faith Martin.


Murder at the University by Faith Martin


Murder of the Bride by Faith Martin.


Murder in the Village by Faith Martin.


Murder in the Family by Faith Martin.


Murder at Home by Faith Martin.


Murder in the Meadow by Faith Martin.


Murder in the Mansion by Faith Martin.


Murder by Fire by Faith Martin.


Murder at Work by Faith Martin.


Murder Never Retires by Faith Martin.


Murder of a Lover by Faith Martin.


Murder Never Misses by Faith Martin.


Murder by Candlelight by Faith Martin.


Some Thursday Readings


Mark Twain’s Obsession with Joan of Arc – Emily Zarevick at JSTOR Daily. 


It’s not rocket science: On universities and ideology – Michael Lind at The Critic Magazine.


Year of the Monarch: Begin Again – Dheepa Maturi at Tweetspeak Poetry.


How I’m Voting in the (Irish) Constitutional Referendum (And Why) – Seth Lewis.


How An Author Can Do More with Less – TS Poetry. 

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Writing a Bibliography - for a Novel

It’s been two weeks since I read a book about the Civil War, and it feels strange. My draft novel is done, at least for now. It’s not so much a novel about the Civil War as it is a novel of the Civil War. 

If you grew up in the South, or even if you didn’t, what happened in the years 1861-1865 affected you, even when you didn’t know it. Both my maternal and paternal grandparents were children of Civil War veterans. They experienced the war in very different ways, both in the fighting and in civilian life. 


My mother’s grandparents were Franco-German immigrants who settled in New Orleans and descendants of the Acadians expelled from Canada after the French and Indian War who settled in what we called “the river parishes” – the stretch of territory along the Mississippi River between New Orleans and Baton Rouge. The men generally fought for the Confederacy; after 1862, the women, children, and elderly men discovered life under Union occupation. 

To continue reading, please see my post today at Dancing Priest.

Photograph by Thomas Kelley via Unsplash. Used with permission.

Some Wednesday Readings


What the Latest Farm Census Says About the Changing Ag Landscape – Lisa Held at Civil Eats.


On the Way to the Tavern: el Camino de Santiago – Br. Raphael Arteaga at The Imaginative Conservative.


Yale Civil War Memorial – Patrick Young at The Reconstruction Era.

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Poets and Poems: Jeanine Hathaway and "Long After Lauds"

Poetry speaks to us differently than both non-fiction and fiction prose. It’s older, of course, than the printed word, recited and repeated long before language was codified into letters, spellings, and definitions. Even in its written or printed form, poetry stands apart, like the older, sole child of a previous marriage. And it’s the literary form that most readily changes when it’s read silently and read aloud. 

These differences between poetry and prose came quickly to mind when I read Long After Lauds: Poems by Jeanine Hathaway, published in 2020. And I will be an honest consumer. It wasn’t the poet’s reputation or reading one of her poems in a journal or online, or the title that attracted me to the collection.  

To continue reading, please see my post today at Tweetspeak Poetry.

Some Tuesday Readings


‘Old Clem’: Song from Dickens’ Great Expectations Set to Music – Jeff Eardley at Society of Classical Poets.


Clearing Brush – poem by Robert Cording at The Hudson Review.


The Ten Best Poems to Analyze – Adam Sedia at Society of Classical Poets.


Poetry Prompt – Journeys: Woodstock Dream – L.L. Barkat at Tweetspeak Poetry. 

“The Second Coming” by William Butler Yeats – Joseph Bottum at Poems Ancient and Modern.

Monday, February 26, 2024

Just Another Protest in London, Except When It’s Not

We’ve been to London and England several times in the past 12 years. We have a hotel that feels like home (slightly more luxurious than our own). We like the theatre and the museums. We like exploring literary and royal history. I like early morning walks around St. James’s Park and Piccadilly. The Charles Dickens Museum. The Samuel Johnson House. Taking the train to Oxford, Salisbury, Canterbury. The Imperial War Museum. The National Gallery and the smaller art museums like the Courtauld.  

You could spend six months there and not exhaust the things to do. 


You also have to be prepared for the protests. I would say the “inevitable protests,” but that would be redundant. At times it seems everyone comes to London to protest, even if London has not to do with what the protest is about.


Typically, it’s an animal rights protest. Each September, there’s London Fashion Week, held in both February and September at the British Fashion Council’s show place on The Strand near Somerset House and the Courtauld’s Museum.  I can’t count the times we’ve unintentionally walked into a protest at the September event. Everyone is usually polite to passersby, and we’ve never had a problem other than feeling some discomfort at walking through a yelling, chanting crowd.


Trafalgar Square is also a popular place for protests. It is a major traffic thoroughfare, with Whitehall, Charing Cross, and The Strand converging there. It’s a great place to tie up traffic and get attention. Yes, we’ve occasionally been caught on a stopped bus in unmoving traffic. We get out and walk. Climate protests have also become popular in both Trafalgar Square and Parliament Square a few blocks down Whitehall. 


Our own hotel has sometimes been involved in protests. It’s a popular place for Asian dignitaries, and once the Dalai Lama was there during our stay. He attracted protesters and supporters in equal numbers. While we were there last fall, the prime minister of Bangladesh arrived for government meetings. We heard the chanting and noise out on the street, even though our room was well in the rear of the property. Hotel security guards helped us navigate arriving and departing at the hotel. 


Protest outside Parliament

Until recently, the most worrisome time had been September 2012. We’d returned to London for vacation after a gap of almost 30 years. The Summer Olympics has just concluded, and the Paralympics were just getting underway; the marathon ran right in front of our hotel. And we attended the big celebratory parade with a couple of million other people, cheering and waving our little British flags. 


One morning, I went downstairs to get a newspaper from the hotel concierge. He heard my American accent and suggested I might consider avoiding the US Embassy, Parliament Square, and protests in general for a time. “I understand they’re targeting Americans,” he said. 


The US Embassy in Libya has just been attacked, and the ambassador and several others brutally murdered. The controversy was raging back home over what the government should have done; the Secretary of State and the President had apparently opted to do nothing, and people had died. And it was an election year. What prompted the protests against America (and Americans) in London was a statement by the President’s office that the Libyan embassy attack had been prompted by a movie about Mohammed being made in Hollywood. That statement ignited the protests in London, overshadowing what had happened at the embassy. 


We avoided the squares for a few days. We had no trouble. 


This past week, more protests happened in London about the war in Gaza. What’s been happening underscores what we noticed last fall – things were changing. London felt different than it had during our previous trip in 2017.  And it’s not just us tourists. The highest levels of the British government are now involved, and at risk. 


Top photograph of Trafalgar Square by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona and lower photograph by James Eades, both via Unsplash. Used with permission.


Some Monday Readings


2024 and the Invasion at the Southern Border – Roger Kimball at The Spectator.


Taking the High Road: The liberal arts have a future – Nadya Williams at Law & Liberty.


The State of the Culture, 2024 – Ted Gioia at The Honest Broker.


Who is Reading Even for Anymore? – Kat Rosenfeld at The Free Press.


10 Years of A London Inheritance.

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Only one son

After Hebrews 1:5-2:4

He never called

an angel a son;

he never told

an angel to call

him a father.

Instead, he directed

their attention,

their worship,

to the firstborn,

the firstborn who

transforms angels

into winds, who

makes his ministers

into flames of fire.

He created the earth

and the heavens;

when they perish,

he remains.


Photograph by Ante Hamersmit via Unsplash. Used with permission.

Some Sunday Readings


Spots of Time: Wordsworth, The Prelude, and the Power of Memory – Sally Thomas at Poems Ancient and Modern.


Sir Martin Gilbert and the Inklings – Bradley Birzer at The Imaginative Conservative. 


The Beauty of ‘Gospel Awkward’ – Trevin Wax at The Gospel Coalition.

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Saturday Good Reads - Feb. 24, 2024

The gentle author (that’s the pen name he uses) at Spitalfields Life used 1927 cigarette cards of Dickens’ London and took a walk to see the buildings, or remnants of buildings, that might still be there. And he took photographs, so you can juxtapose the drawings on the cards with the photos. As it turns out, one of them, the Water Gate at Essex Street, features an area in my novel Dancing Prophet. Another one, 48 Doughty Street, is the home of the Charles Dickens Museum.  

Stanford Medicine published a study that identified distinct brain organization patterns in women and men. While it’s something my wife could have told them without spending the research money, it’s still interesting that there is scientific evidence for it. I can’t even imagine the outrage this is going to evoke.


Dr. Michael Kruger, professor at and president of Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, notes one of the markers or characteristics of very early Christians. And it remains a marker of contemporary Christians. From earliest times, Christians were “people of the text.”


More Good Reads




Westminster Abbey and the Danger of Inhospitality – John Beeson at The Bee Hive.


When Cultural Tailwinds Become Cultural Headwinds – Stephen McAlpine.


Writing and Literature


Cormac McCarthy’s Sideline: Freelance Copy Editor – Joel Miller at Miller’s Book Review.


Fiction and Time – John Wilson at Prufrock. 


Any Day Now: An Adventure Story – Henry Lewis at Story Warren. 


Life and Culture


Katherine Brodsky Is Not Sorry – Rod Dreher at Rod Dreher’s Diary.


Critical Thinking”: What Does It Really Mean? – Daniel Lattier at The Imaginative Conservative.


Unpacking of “Separation of Church and State” – Alan Strange at Crossway.




Lenten Sonnet – Andrew Peterson at Rabbit Room Poetry.


“Disobedience” by A.A. Milne – Joseph Bottum at Poems Ancient and Modern.


Getting to Stop by Woods on a Snowy Evening – Simeon Swinger at Mere Orthodoxy. 


American Stuff


Roosevelt’s Grief – David Bannon at Front Porch Republic. 


“A Heart Devoted to the Welfare of Our Country” – John Quincy Adams’ inaugural address via The Imaginative Conservative. 


How the 1619 Project Distorted History – James Oakes at Jacobin.




Metaphor and Rain of one afternoon – Sonja Benskin Mesher.


Early Gerhard Richter mural, painted over in 1979, resurfaces in Dresden – Catherine Hickley at The Art Newspaper.




War and Genocide in the Name of God – Nicholas Denysenko at Church Life Journal.


Shadow of Shaddai – Steffany Gretzinger

Painting: Portrait of a Rabbi. Oil on canvas circa 1900. Artist unknown

Friday, February 23, 2024

A simple word

After Hebrews 1:1-4

He speaks a single word,

and the universe must

listen. He speaks a single

idea, and the universe

must hear it, accept it,

own it. A single word,

and the universe must

obey, pay heed, take

heed, absorb it. He

created the world;

his word upholds

the creation.


Photograph by Sixteen Miles Out via Unsplash. Used with permission.

Some Friday Readings


From the Knight’s Tale – Geoffrey Chaucer at Kingdom Poets (D.S. Martin). 


Glossolalia – poem by Chris Wheeler at Rabbit Room Poetry.


Observations of eternity – poem by Franco Amati at Garbage Notes.


Riffing on the Psalms – Jody Lee Collins at Poetry & Made Things.


Pause – poem by Seth Lewis.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

"Dutch Threat" by Josh Pachter

College student Jack Farmer gets a dream assignment from his professor: spend two weeks in Amsterdam doing research, and all expenses are paid. The next thing he knows, he’s landing at Schiphol Airport and in a taxi to his hotel. 

The man he’s told to meet is a researcher and archivist at the Begijnhof, a complex of old buildings (including the oldest in the city) originally built for a Catholic sisterhood not unlike nuns. It’s original purpose has evolved; now it’s only older women who live there, and the waiting list is long indeed. Jack’s introduced to several of the residents, including one with a live-in nurse who bowls the student over. Then his host takes off for a conference, leaving Jack as a temporary resident so he can do his research – and feed the cat.


But then one of the ladies, the one with the attractive nurse, is found stabbed to death. Given that the complex is locked at night, suspicion falls on the nurse. The police are even more suspicious when the nurse turns out to be the victim’s sole beneficiary. But Jack knows better, and he’s determined to vindicate the young woman he’s falling in love with. 


Dutch Threat is the first, but not likely the last, of the Jack Farmer mysteries by Josh Pachter. It’s a fun story, full of Amsterdam’s sights (and food), written in an almost breezy, college-student style (with a good dose of colorful language). Pachter uses real locations, and while it’s been 25 years since I visited the city, I remember the Begijnhof, the Amsterdam Historical Museum, the Liedesplein, and many of the other scenes in the book.


Josh Pachter

Pachter has been a writer and teacher in high schools and universities in the United States and Europe. He’s also a translator, writer, and editor, and has had more than 100 crime stories published in a wide array of magazines, including Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine when he was 16. He’s edited numerous anthologies and translated both fiction and nonfiction, primarily from Dutch into English. He lives with his family in Virginia.


Dutch Threat (possibly a play on words of “Dutch treat”) is a fast-paced, something-always-happening mystery, filled with the color and people of Amsterdam.


Top photograph: The Begijnhof, Amsterdam by Yoan via Unsplash. Used with permission.


Some Thursday Readings


Josephine Tey, woman of mystery – Malcolm Forbes at The Critic Magazine.


9 Historical Mysteries That Have Been Adapted to Cinema – Patrice McDonough at CrimeReads. 


The Light No Light Allays – poem by Andy Patton at Rabbit Room Poetry.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

What Happens When You Finally Type "The End"?

It’s been more than two years since the writing began. It’s been more than four since the research started. A little over a month ago, on Jan. 16, I wrote this in my writing journal: “Reached 87,758 words. First draft completed.” Five days later, I wrote “First reread / editing completed.” 

It was there I stopped, almost mentally and emotionally spent. I need to do the second edit, which for me is the most serious one. But I stopped, to catch my breath, reflect and take stock, and consider how the past two years of my life have been devoted to a story that is about 25 percent true and 75 percent fiction. Nd what I thought was mostly true mostly wasn’t.


I’ve published five novels and a non-fiction book. I’ve completed two novel manuscripts that have potential but need considerable reworking. I have at least five different novel ideas, and a dozen short stories, buzzing around my head. 


This story I just finished, this manuscript I’ve labored over, isn’t exactly a labor of love. It’s more a labor of sweat, the story I had to get done. 


To continue reading, please see me post today at the ACFW Blog.


Top photograph by Rui Silva sj via Unsplash. Used with permission.

Some Wednesday Readings


Religion & Celebrity: The Search for Meaning in the 1920s – Mark Malvasi at The Imaginative Conservative.


Thunder in the Harbor by Richard W. Hatcher III – Civil War Books and Authors. 


Archaeologist searches to unravel a Civil War mystery in Southgate – Michael Coker at WCPO.

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

The Poetry Chapbooks of Red Ceilings Press

I’m not sure exactly when I first heard about “those beautiful, little” poetry chapbooks, but I had three of them in my hands by late last fall. And yes, they are little, postcard-size measuring four inches by slightly less than six inches, and about one-eighth of an inch thick. I also have one of the Red Ceilings eBooks, but I’m not sure if I can say I have it “in hand.”  

The Red Ceilings Press may be one of the most unusual publishing enterprises I’ve come across. Based in the United Kingdom, it publishes small poetry chapbooks in print from and short collections in ebook form. A printed pamphlet is about 30 pages. The ebooks vary, but mostly run about the same length or shorter (the ebooks are published as pdf documents). 


The press has been operating since 2010 with a very simple operating philosophy: “We love doing our chapbooks and that’s really our main thing, but we also publish the occasional eBook.” The approach to ebooks means no one involved is going to get rich, except perhaps the reader, metaphorically: “Our eBooks are available to download for free because we are nice like that.”

To continue reading, please see my post today at Tweetspeak Poetry.

Some Tuesday Readings


Some days you don’t have it – poem by Franco Amati at Garbage Notes.

Alexei Navalny’s Letters from the Gulag – The Free Press.


Of Lord Byron’s faults, writing dull letters wasn’t one of them – Alexander Larman at The Spectator.


Learning to Receive the Day – L.M. Sacasas at The Convivial Society. 

Monday, February 19, 2024

“Christianity and Poetry” by Dana Gioia

Does poetry matter to your faith? 

Most Christians would likely be puzzled at the question even being asked. 


Poet Dana Gioia says it should matter. A lot.


In the essay “Christianity and Poetry,” first published 10 years ago, Gioia goes a lot further than saying it should matter. “It is an essential, inextricable, and necessary aspect of religious faith and practice.” It doesn’t matter that most Christians would find that statement absurd, he says, because it’s true. 


And then he considers the evidence. How did David pray to God? In poetry called psalms. How did Ruth respond to Naomi’s plea to go back home? In Poetry. The books of Proverbs, Job, and Ecclesiastes are all poetry. So are the Song of Solomon and Lamentations (and the Psalms, of course). While he doesn’t specifically mention it, what is chapter one of Genesis but an oral poem of creation; God speaks the physical world into existence.


The gospels and epistles of the New Testament bear the imprint of poetry. The book of Revelation is a prose poem, he says. The Beatitudes are shaped by prophetic verse. Mary’s announcement of the Incarnation in Luke is a poem. Some scholars believe the Aramaic of the Lord’s Prayer is a poem. “When Jesus preached,” Gioia says, “he told stories, spoke poems, and offered proverbs.


Dana Gioia

Both Protestants, via modern translations of the Bible, and Catholics, via Vatican II, ground poetry out of Scriptures. The music and the mystery were deemphasized in favor of the strictly rational. And in the process, we forget, or deny, a key aspect of God.


Yes, it’s a startling essay, and it goes on for 32 pages. But the man makes a solid argument. To ignore the poetical nature of the Bible is to miss fully understanding it.


I came to poetry late. Yes, I was exposed to the poetry we all were in middle and high school, with a strong infusion of British poetry in college. But it wasn’t until I began writing speeches as a central part of my career that I began to take poetry seriously, as something that mattered.


And what I began to notice, because I was a church-attending Christian who read and studied on his own as well, was that the Bible was one of the most poetic books I’d ever encountered. It’s almost as if poetry is the language of God.


Gioia has published six poetry collections, several works about poetry, and a number of translations, including the recent The Madness of Hercules. He is a former poet laureate of California and former chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. He’s written four opera libretti and collaborated on many musical compositions. His awards include the American Book Award, the Poet’s Prize, Notre Dame’s Laetare Medal, the Aiken Taylor Award in Modern Poetry, and the Walt Whitman Champion of Liberty Prize, among others. 




Dana Gioia and Meet Me at the Lighthouse: Poems.


Rediscovering Seneca: Dana Gioia Translates The Madness of Hercules.


Dana Gioia’s Pity the Beautiful: Poems.


Some Monday Readings


A paper manifesto – Elizabeth Stice at Current Magazine.


Editing: Scratch That, Try This Instead – Joel Miller at Miller’s Book Review. 


10° – artwork by Sonja Benskin Mesher. 


Churches at the City Boundaries: St. Andrew’s, Holborn – A London Inheritance.


The Great Beast – artwork by Jack Baumgartner at The School of the Transfer of Energy.

Sunday, February 18, 2024

A sermon, a letter

After Hebrews 1:1-4

A sermon, a letter

spoken first, then

written, or written

first, then spoken.

How the word is

heard can change;

as with prophets

of old, followed

by silence, as if

the world is 


a collective intake

of breath, a gasp,

at what comes,

the son and heir,

the radiance,

the glow of glory,

bearing the exact

imprint of his father,

holding up the universe.

The heir purifies, first,

then sits at the right

hand. The heir is 

the letter; the heir is

the sermon. 


Photograph by Matt Botsford via Unsplash. Used with permission.

Some Sunday Readings


‘Frozen for Stars’ and ‘A Hope Beyond the Moon Europa’ – poems by J.J. Brinski at Rabbit Room Poetry.


Christendom After Comcast – John Ehrett at Ad Fontes.


When the Walk Becomes a Crawl: One of the Most Hopeful Reminders I’ve Read about Sanctification – Justin Taylor.


The Neurodivergent Believer – Allyson Reid at Gospel-Centered Discipleship.


England’s Nazareth: Walsingham – Br. Louis Bethea at The Imaginative Conservative. 

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Saturday Good Reads - Feb. 17, 2024

I’d subscribed to The Free Press on Substack, originally as a free subscriber. And then they added a Sunday column on poetry with author and social commentator Douglas Murray, which was behind the paywall. That was sufficient for me to move to a paid subscription. Murray, who’s British, is an editor at The Spectator, and whenever he speaks or writes, it’s always worth paying attention. Since Oct. 7, he’s been an unabashed champion for Israel; his logic is devastating (to opponents). And his insights into favorite poems are a marvel. Bari Weiss, editor of The Free Press, announced this week that Murray is continuing for a second year

Niall Ferguson, a Scottish-American historian and senior fellow at Stanford’s Hoover Institution, has a warning to Americans. If you think a third world war is impossible, you may be overlooking what’s beginning to stare everyone in the face. David Goldman at The Claremont Institute echoes a similar theme, pointing out that the United States has been experiencing a string of foreign policy disasters. See “Saving America’s Future from the Blob.” 


Last fall, while we were in England, my wife and I visited Canterbury Cathedral. It’s a magnificent place, full of history, faith, and remarkable stories. This past week, it was also full of an event called a “silent disco.” It’s hard to imagine a place known for the martyrdom of Thomas Beckett becoming a pop music venue, but that’s what happened. Ben Phillips at The Critic Magazine took note, and he doesn’t have much patience with those who “clutched their pearls” (like we did, I don’t mind saying). He asks a fundamental question, that places the silent disco right in the middle of a major problem for England’s great cathedrals – and that’s how to pay for their maintenance and upkeep.


There needs to be a reckoning on what happened during the Russiagate upheaval. We know now that the highest levels of the CIA were involved in manufacturing “evidence” allegedly proving that the Donald Trump campaign team were in league with Putin’s Russia. The Steele dossier was concocted by the Clinton campaign team and its attorneys. And virtually the entire national news media joined the Russiagate chorus, without ever questioning whether it was real. This past week, independent reporters Matt Taibbi, Michael Shellenberger, and Alexandra Gutentag published extensive articles about what really happened. At Racket News, Taibbi explains how reporters who did try to find out the truth dearly paid for it, often at the hands of other reporters.


It makes me wonder who the real threat to democracy actually is. Independent reporters may be the only ones left doing real journalism.



More Good Reads




Tichborne’s Elegy – Sally Thomas at Poems Ancient and Modern.


I am the Stone” and “The Promised Land” – Brian Yapko at Society of Classical Poets.


Unutterable Name – David Whyte.


‘In the Wilderness’ by Robert Graves – Joseph Bottum at Poems Ancient and Modern.


Ashes – Kelly Belmonte at All Nine; image by Tom Darin Liskey.


Life and Culture


What a Century-Old Austrian Economist Can Teach Us About Peace in a Tumultuous Election Year – Jonathan Lawler at the Institute for Faith, Work, & Economics.


The fight for civilization in higher education – Peter Wood at The Spectator.




The Imaginary Operagoer: A Memoir – Dana Gioia at The Hudson Review.


Writing and Literature


6 Ways to Find (and Protect) the Time You Need to Read Books – Tony Reinke at Crossway.


Once Upon a Time, Tolkien Felt Like a Failure – Scott Sauls. 


News Media


Hedge fund manager Bill Ackman discovers American journalism – via Twitter.


They gave local news away. Virtually nobody wanted it – Kevin Lind at Columbia Journalism Review.


The Gaza war and the dark history of the BBC during the holocaust – Moshe Phillips at Jewish News Service. 


Israel / Gaza


Memo to the ‘Experts’: Stop Comparing Israel’s War in Gaza to Anything. It Has No Precedent – John Spencer at Newsweek.


Antisemitism and safety fears surge among US Jews, survey finds – Tiffany Stanley at Associated Press. 


Who is Winning the Gaza War? – Stuart Schneiderman at Stuart’s Substack.


Putin’s suggestion of Ukraine ceasefire rejected by United States, sources say – Reuters. 




Who is Jesus? The Resurrection and the Life – Robb Brunansky at The Cripplegate. 


American Stuff


Horseshoes Win the Civil War – Brian Kowell at Emerging Civil War.


Nearer My God to Thee – Andre Rieu live in Amsterdam

 Painting: Woman Reading, oil on canvas by Torajiro Kojima (1881-1929).