Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Future Door by Jason Lethcoe

The Future Door

No Place Like Holmes Vol. 2

Jason Lethcoe

Step back into time and meet a young man named Griffin Sharpe who has amazing observational skills akin to the master detective Sherlock Holmes. Together wit his uncle Rupert Snodgrass, a mechanical genius, they embark on a quest to save the past, present and future from the Moriarties, who have stolen a time machine Rupert created.

This is the second book in the No Place Like Holmes book series. I had not read the first, which I wish I had, but this story holds its own and Mr. Lethcoe fills you in on details from the previous book which helped quite a bit. I enjoyed this story. It is appropriate for the age group 8-12 and is a fun way to introduce kids indirectly to Sherlock Holmes with a character their own age. I enjoyed the fun used of character names and the ending. I did think it started off a little slow in contrast to the quicker development of the ending. I would like to have seen more descriptive action and detective work.

I really like the sprinkling of morals throughout. Griffin at times throughout the story shows His trust in the Lord and at the end….. Well….. You will have to read that part yourself. I enjoyed the ending immensely . I also liked and enjoyed the mini mysteries at the end. I think they are good little thinking bits for kids and adults too. I’m giving this story 4 stars only because I believe the development could have been more consistent across the story.

This book was provided by Thomas Nelson’s book review blogger’s program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my very own. I am disclosing this according to the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Festival Promo Video

Well here is a rough edit of a promo video I made for the arts festival.  I used my GL2 footage primarily because it handled the low light far better than the XL1s.  The XL1s is a great EFP camera but not a great event camera. SO I wouldn't say this video is pro level by far... I have a lot to learn, but it's a start.  I didnt' do very many event video in college, I did more script based video where I controlled the lighting and the movement like a feature film, so here it goes!

Monday, November 21, 2011

O'Neill Fine Arts Festival

This past weekend I had the privilege to videotape and photograph the O'Neill Fine Arts Festival.  There were many amazing performances and artists there sharing their work.  Here are a couple of photographs to tide us over until I can get some video clips edited!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Journey to Christmas, DVD

Journey To Christmas, DVD

4 Session Holy Land Study Experience

Tricord Media

Tyndale Entertainment

Five diverse people take a journey to the Holy Land for the first time to discover the true meaning of Christmas. These five people are guided by a local scholar to search throughout the Holy Land for the answer to this question from a personal point of view. This DVD series is presented in a reality show format following an artist, a musician/singer, a talk show personality, an agnostic, and a First Nations (Native American) person as they pursue the reality of the first Christmas. It also features commentaries by Biblical scholars to clarify some elements. The producers also provide study guides and marketing materials in PDF format on one of the DVDs.

The DVD’s are beautifully shot, utilizing great composition and color. I applaud the cinematography. It made me want to return to Israel to view and photograph the land again. The reality show format brings a nice twist to the DVD that helps to draw you into how the different people view and experience the culture and religious aspects of the land of Israel. Each person’s struggle or acceptance mirrors that of many and adds interest . I liked how they had the participants ask questions of each other and themselves, and I often found myself rooting for Drew, the talk show host. I could identify with his weariness of seeing so much religiosity. I could identify with my experience in which I found myself tired of the rituals and icons plastered everywhere marring the simplicity of the site. I think many people will identify with the participants experiences and feelings.

The DVD attempts to address the idea of finding the true meaning of Christmas. I found purpose more adequately expressed through the study guides than directly in the video. The video shows how the participants were exposed to the reality of how the first Christmas would have occurred but it doesn’t address why Jesus came. I think it assumes that we know why he came, and therefore would be geared to an audience that already know the why but not the reality of the circumstances.

Overall, I really enjoyed watching the videos. Since I have had the opportunity to visit Israel , I could understand some of their experiences an I think it will give people a great peek into the realities of the first Christmas. It is a video series that I willingly recommend to churches and individuals.

This DVD was provided by Tyndale. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my very own. I am disclosing this according to the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

It is Dangerous to Be Right When the Government is Wrong by Judge Andrew P. Napolitano

It’s Dangerous to Be Right When the Government is Wrong

The Case for Personal Freedom

Judge Andrew P. Napolitano

Sit down, pick up this book, read it and ponder what it is saying. Judge Napolitano presents the case for denigration of our personal freedoms by our government. He asks (as well as quotes from an anonymous source)…does the government exist to protect our freedoms, or do we exist to serve the government? Judge Napolitano surveys subjects from the Declaration of Independence , the right to own property, the freedom of speech, the freedom of association, the freedom to travel, the right to privacy, your own body, the right to self-defense, the right to petition the government, and more. He provides examples of how these rights have been trampled upon or taken away. He writes clearly and defines his terms so that you are on the same page.

I don’t normally read political books, and since I don’t have TV, I wasn’t familiar with the judge‘s positions prior to reading this book. Yet, I am glad that I have read it. It is an book that seeks to inform readers, and I believe it does just that. While I don’t agree with every idea that the judge discusses or proposes, I think that this book is a valuable read and should open its readers eyes to what we have lost. I did feel that his conclusion was short and would like more of his thoughts on how to bring about change, and would it even be possible in today’s society.

This book was provided by Thomas Nelson’s book review blogger’s program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my very own. I am disclosing this according to the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255.