Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Book Talk

There was a time I had a series of posts called Book Talk.  They stopped when I started doing a lot of book reviews for publishers again.  I have decided, at least for now, to only review books of friends and a few other books that come my way.

I want my book time back again, especially since I can't read as fast as I once did due to the whole eye problem (I still cannot read anything but the top row of the eye chart with my right eye).  So I hope to have a Book Talk posts when there is something to talk about.

I am always asked for suggestions for good fiction... and I think I've recommended Goudge and Stevenson to death even if they are wonderful... so today I thought I would start from almost the beginning of my reading life.

Not Nancy Drew but the first big books I enjoyed that to this day have a place on my bookshelves.  I purchased hardback copies long ago at various library sales. Although most are still available and a couple are on Kindle for a great price, you should also be able to find them at a good library. Also, I want to give you and update about the book... I reviewed last week.  That update is below.

The first book I want to share is The Silver Chalice.  There is a movie by the same name that was popular in the days of the big Biblical epics and it is still shown around Easter on some old movie stations.  It is set a few years after the Resurrection of Christ and while it centers around Basil, a young man sold into slavery, the story contains many well known Biblical people.  I thought it brought the early church to life with a well written story.

The second book is a little better known and it is called The Robe.  It is the story of a Roman soldier who wins the robe of Jesus as a gambling prize.  It leads him to learn more about Jesus and those who walked with Him.  It is a brilliant story that takes one into that time immediately after the Resurrection and what life was like at the time.  The movie continues to be shown quite often at Easter and sometimes even during the Christmas holidays.

The third book is one I have read a couple of times and the movie is an often watched favorite.  Exodus takes place as WWII is ending and it is about the founding of the State of Israel.  I have read that Paul Newman, who is Jewish, asked to play the lead role in the movie.

It starts with a ship full of survivors of death camps trying to leave for what was then called Palestine, we also meet families who have lived in the land for generations, and even see how there were Arabs who had been at peace with the Jews for generations.  At the center of the story is also the blossoming romance between an American gentile widow and one of the Jewish leaders.

We are there the day Israel becomes a nation and experience the highs and lows that came within days after that.  It is a big book and a long movie but extremely good.  This was the first "big book" I gave my daughter to read and she loved it as a teenager.

The next two books are actually three originally.  Now you can get The Winds of War (originally two books) in one volume and the sequel War and Remembrance in another volume.  The first book takes place leading up to WWII and the second book takes place during WWII.

I first became aware of the books with the mini-series The Winds of War.  It was so good that I had to read the book it was based on.  Even though I heard they were making a mini-series of the sequel, I first read War and Remembrance to see what happens to the characters.

Both the books are very good.  While they cover adult themes (such as adultery as it can happen in war situations), I don't recall the books actually giving descriptions of adult themes.  If you get my drift.

As for the mini-series, I absolutely loved The Winds of War but I didn't care for War and Remembrance at all.  They changed actors for a couple of characters and it didn't work.  I guess a lot of people felt the same way since you can still get The Winds of War on DVD but not War and Remembrance.

The above books are still among my all time favorite fiction reads.  Some of the titles are available only third party.  Others are still in print today.

I reviewed the self published book by Rose Ellen Taylor called Fortunes Claimed last week. She has reduced the price temporarily below the cost to print it so if you are interested, you can find the book on ebay by searching Rose Ellen Taylor or click... here.  It was a very good story from a first time author.

Mentioned in this Blog Post
The Silver Chalice by Thomas B. Costain... here. (Hardcover third party)
The Silver Chalice Kindle version... here.
The Silver Chalice movie on Amazon video... here.

The Robe by Lloyd C. Doughlas... here
The Robe Kindle version... here.
The Robe DVD... here.
The Robe Amazon video... here.

Exodus by Leon Uris... here. (Paperback)
Exodus Kindle version... here.
Exodus audiobook... here.
Exodus DVD... here.

The Winds of War by Herman Wouk... here.  (Paperback)
The Winds of War Kindle version... here.
The Winds of War audiobook... here.
The Winds of War mini series on DVD... here.(Excellent!)

War and Remembrance by Herman Wouk... here. (Paperback)
War and Remembrance Kindle version... here.
War and Remembrance audiobook... here.
War and Remembrance mini series on DVD... unavailable
(there are a few people selling it for hundreds of dollars but it is not worth it.)

Disclaimer:  Most links to are Associate links.
Image:  Artist, Kim Sung


Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

I’ve not read any of those books, but I’ve seen a few of the movies. Whenever you talk books my list grows longer!

Thickethouse.wordpress said...

Great recommendations! Lloyd C. Douglas is a favorite author! I love the two volumes of memoirs. I think his daughters finished the second one....Remember the tv series about Mr. Hudson's Secret Journal? And the Silver Chalice is wonderful, too. I'm not so familiar with these Wouk books, but interested to read about them.

Carol said...

I have read The Robe and enjoyed it but not any of the others.

Anonymous said...

So excited you are going to do Book Talk posts again! You introduced me to D.E. Stevenson and I really enjoyed the Miss Buncle books and now my daughter is reading them! She also read The Silver Chalice as a teenager and enjoyed it, too. I’ve watched The Robe and Exodus movies, but have never read the books. Maybe one of these days.....
Laura C (WA)

Deborah Montgomery said...

I am a big reader, but actually have not read any of these books. These might be good to put on our next book club ballot. Thank you for the recommendations.

Sherry said...

i read a couple of those books while in high school.
that was umpteen gazillion years ago - i'm thinking
i should have another read! thank you for the memory.

The Journey said...

I found a new author I really like - Lynn Austin, just finished her book, "The Strength of His Hand," about King Hezzeka.

Keri said...

Thank you for these recommendations! I'll bookmark them for future reads, as I feel I can always trust your judgment on fiction choices. I have to say, I began reading Exodus about five years ago but couldn't get into it. I don't think I made it past page 20. Maybe it was just the wrong time... But I bought it in mass market paperback form, so it's still sitting on a bookshelf waiting for its turn to be tried again someday. :)