Books

A Book Review of Unashamed

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Unashamed by Francine Rivers

Type: Biblical, Christian Fiction, Romance

Basic Plot: Rahab, in agony over the knowledge that she will die when the Israelites attack, wants only to serve the God of Israel and be safe. Meanwhile, Salmon is eager to claim the Promise Land as his home country and to serve God. Will these two meet and see both of their wishes come true?

Quality

Plot: 3/5 Average: The story of Rahab was in many ways just a slightly more descriptive Bible story. Now, the purpose of historical novels is to add details to true stories. I have nothing against this, and I think Francine Rivers does a good job at trying to be accurate and linear. Despite this, I do think that this book would have been better as a full-length novel rather than a novelette. I think it was fine the way it was written and that it did fit the series and devotional better this way, but one can see the potential in the book as they read it. Since going that though would have taken away from the point of the series though, I understand that it was written the way it was, short and sweet. Only she would know what God’s ultimate plan for this book was. What was there, though, told a beautiful, simple story of what Rahab’s life may have been like.

Writing Style and Setup: 3½/5 Above Average: I do like Francine Rivers style than most other Christian fiction authors. She seems to have a good understanding of what is and is not important in adding details, as well as how to tell a story from start to finish in an organized manner. One can get lost in the story much better than one can in other Christian fiction novels.

Moral: 3/5 Good Moral with Possibly Negative Undertones: The moral of the story is to trust God no matter what. The protagonist Rahab embodies faith in God, willing to sacrifice all for him and put anything aside to follow him, which saves her and her family. This novelization of a true story is a good lesson to read, but not all of the presentation was necessarily the best. Rahab had a zeal for God that tends to frighten her family. Non-Christians may look at her as bossy, controlling, and terrifying, looking at Christina zeal as nothing more than oppression. Even young Christians, both literally and spiritually could be led to this conclusion. Christians will probably understand though that Rahab lived in a more oppressive and controlling time as a whole, where everyone in a land or family was one religion, regardless of what it was, as well as that God was saving the lives of Rahab and her family, making it not too unreasonable for it to be expected that they give up false gods considering they are relying on the true one to save their life. One can’t get something for nothing. I do prefer though to read about Christians though that are “wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” It has been proven that forced religion will end up as fake religion eventually.

Overall: 3/5 Average: I do not think this book was as good as the previous one Unveiled, but it was better than a lot of other Christian fiction novels. I believe the reason the story was not as interesting was because Unveiled is about a rarely discussed or known about woman, while Unashamed is about a woman that is far more talked about and known. I would say it is above average for a Christian fiction and average as a whole. I think the group that would enjoy it most is grown woman.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 2½/5 Frequent, Non-sensual Mention: The protagonist is a prostitute. She is referred to in the book as a “whore” and a “harlot” by herself, other characters, and the book, and it is mentioned that she is known as a whore. Near the beginning of the book, she is sitting beside a man that slept with the night before, but she feels nothing but disgust for him. She kisses him, and he kisses her neck and hugs her. She stops him from caressing her. It mentions that a woman was ordered to sleep with a man as a child and that she used this to her advantage to become a prostitute. It mentioned that she pretended to enjoy this. A young woman worries that she will have to live in poverty as a prostitute. A woman asks a man if he wants to marry her because of her “character attributes” while she touches her “neckline.” It mentions that a man tries hard not to look at a woman’s hip. A woman blows a kiss at some men and uses a “seductive” voice to deceive people watching. Men call a prostitute “my sweet” and “my beauty.” Characters whistle when a woman hangs her leg out, and they yell vulgar things at another time, though it does not say what they specifically said. It is mentioned that Amorite men are especially vulgar and “boast” of their “experience.” It is mentioned that men refuse to look at a woman’s bed. A woman offers to hide men in her bed, which clearly disgusts one. A woman wonders if a man will kiss her; he doesn’t. A man helps rescue a woman by putting his arm around her waist, thought his is not done sensually. A prostitute tells a married man to go home. A man says red is the color of harlots, though his relative insists it is the color of blood. It is mentioned that some men once raped a woman. A man says a woman no doubt has diseases from being a prostitute. The men of Israel are all circumcise, though no details of the process are given besides that the men are afterwards weak and scarred. Some men tell a woman that the have laws about fornication, adultery, and prostitution; the woman then willingly ends her life as a prostitute. It is mentioned that some men had more than one wife and that one had a concubines. A man blushes from liking a woman.

Violence: 2/5 Light Violence: Some men practice fighting. A man fights several men, slicing one. A woman throws a shoe at a man. A woman smacks a man on the back of the head. Several times the protagonist thinks about throwing things at people and once about shaking them. It is mentioned that men are killed in war. It is mentioned that a man no doubt had a “violent death.” A woman “slaps” a man “playfully.” Characters mention that prostitution is punishable by death.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 Brief Mention and Possible Misuse: Characters at least once say “by the gods.” Characters curse, but it does not say what they said.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 2/5 Slightly Emotional and Disturbing Content: The Israelites destroying Jericho is described in partial detail. It mentions that everywhere there are dead bodies and fire and that one can smell “burning flesh.” It is mentioned that the Israelites and God destroyed several towns and that they burned and killed everything and everybody. A man suggests that his family drink hemlock so that they will not have to be “hacked to pieces” by the Israelites. A woman worries about the head and bodies of the some men hanging on a wall. Men briefly consider killing a woman; they don’t. It is mentioned in slight detail that babies are forcibly taken and burned alive for the purpose of divine blessings. It is mentioned that Jewish children were thrown into the river by the Egyptians. It is mentioned that it sounded like a man fell off a wall and was trampled by a mob. It is mentioned that characters were killed for disobeying God and that Moses died. It mentions that God saved people from death, which is in many ways is the theme of the book. It mentions that Joseph and the Israelites were made to be slaves. A man wonders how many will die “in battle.” A woman believes God will not “waste… lives.” Characters cry from a feeling of rejection and disappointment. A woman asks her daughter is she is crying for the dead; she isn’t. Characters know they will be executed if they played he traitor, and other characters wonder if others got executed, though they weren’t. Some people wonder how the Israelites will destroy the wall of Jericho. The plagues of Egypt are mentioned and what they were, including the Nile River turning to blood, animal death, “disease, boils, hail,” and death of the firstborn. The last one is mentioned two or three times, at least one mentioning the angel of death. A boy cries out while being circumcised. A man almost faints from circumcision and is in great pain. A woman worries her father will fall and break his neck from tree climbing. A woman has blood on her face from mob panic. A man has blood from another man staining his clothes. A man’s leg hurts. A man says a woman no doubt has diseases from being a prostitute. A woman sarcastically asks if some men are “waiting… for the king’s executioner” because they are not hiding. “Slaughterhouse” and “walking dead” are used for descriptive purposes.

Religious Issues: 2/5 Negative Appearance: People have idols of clay and human skulls. Children are once mentioned to be covered in talismans. Ancestor worship is mentioned. A woman throws all of these idols and talismans out of her house. Her family decides they will worship them anyway after they leave her. It mentions that people were forced to burn their babies alive for blessings from false gods. It is briefly mentions that men sacrifice to false gods and goddesses. A man calls God and his powers “myths,” and characters that don’t believe in God say it “god.” There is occasional mention of “the gods” and how a woman thinks they are fake and useless. Later she points out that she has no “idols or talismans.”

Magic: ½/5 Brief Mention: Balaam, the sorcerer, is briefly mentioned and that he blessed Israel, though he was hired to curse it. This event happened in the Bible.

Others: Characters consume, serve, and think about serving wine. A man asks a woman if she wants to get drunk with him; she refuses. A woman lies that she is shaking from a hangover, though the term “hangover” isn’t used. Wine is poured on the sand as a part of the Passover ritual.

Overall: 3½/5 Almost Teenager Appropriate: Because the book is about a prostitute, though little detail is given, many parents may want to wait until their children are sixteen before letting their children read it. The disturbing themes in the book may also be a hindrance. To put it simply, it has nearly adult content that is not described in detail.

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Movies

A Movie Review of Love Comes Softly

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Love Comes Softly by Michael Landon Jr. (Director)

Type: Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction, Romance, Western

Basic Plot: After Marty’s husband dies, she forces herself into a temporary marriage of convenience with Clark Davis, a man she has just met. As she discovers the healing that God and love have for her, she wonders if she really wants this marriage to remain only temporary.

Quality

Plot: 3½/5 Above Average: Love Comes Softly mixes tragedy and comedy with a puff of Christianity. Though the theme is sad and the characters hurting, humorous events and circumstances lighten the sad themes. Throughout, God is given respect and honor through prayer and hymns. The only complaint is that some of the writing did sound a little forced and awkward, but this was only occasionally. Most of it was natural and even at times touching.

Acting: 4/5 Well Done: Unlike the wooden and even painful acting of most Christian movies, this movie has real acting and professional actors and actresses. I believe using real actors and actresses really helped make the movie flow well, as that is what most of the movie hangs on. Scenes of drama and crying touch the heart, causing the viewers to feel the characters pain.

Costumes and Scenery: 4/5 Well Done: Costumes are modest, elegant, and accurate. Perhaps because the movie is not too new, the outfits do not have the brushed over magical look that many movies and TV series tend to have. Though I often like the done up look, since the movie was done on the prairie, I feel like the roughness adds to the realism.

Scenes were well decorated and shot. Whether it was indoors or outdoors, it was both realistic and old fashioned in a cozy way. Scenes were also well shot, with little to no awkward scenes or camera shaking.

Moral: 3/5 A Good Moral: The moral of overcoming pain with God, love, and a caring for others is there as long as a brief discussion on why God allows bad things to happen. The first one is well delivered, subtle and sweet. Marty learns to again become happy and cheerful as she is loved and as she helps a girl come to terms of her own. The second moral tries to explain the commonly asked question “Why does God let bad things happen?” It explains that it isn’t about God letting bad things happen more so than God comforting us and being with us when bad things happen. This is a good focus shift, though like many movies, does not directly answer the question, therefore Christians are probably more likely to accept than non-Christians, though non-Christians and hurting Christians may accept it if God leads them to it.

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: I would have to say that this is one of the best Christian movies I have ever seen. With a good story, real acting, and beautiful costumes, I would have to recommend this, in quality, to Christians and pioneer enthusiast alike. I especially liked the Christian themes, as they were not neglected, but at the same time not pushed down in a preachy manner.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 2/5 Suggestive Content: A man walks in on a woman taking a bath, though the viewers don’t see anything and the man is embarrassed. A girl asks a woman where a baby came from, and the woman says that a man loved a woman “so much that it spilled over and made a baby.” The girl says a large family that “must have a lot of love spillin’ over.” There are two kisses and a near kiss between married people, as well one or two incidences each of modest tickling and holding. A woman makes an indirect reference to chicken’s “rears” by calling it “you know,” and a girl says the word. At the beginning and end of the movie, a woman wears a “v” neck shirt that some might consider low, and once or twice clothing can be moved in a way as to be a bit revealing. From the back a woman’s undershirt can be seen after it gets wet.

Violence: 1½/5 Light Violence and Injuries: After falling off a horse, a man hits his head on a rock. A man accidentally sits on a burner and then bumps his head on a table. A woman burns her hand. A girl is in a fistfight with a boy, and later pushes him. A woman playfully pushes a man over. A boy says a girl “poked [him] in the nose.” There is an example that the talks about getting hurt. A woman talks about the things in books that include violence being “the best shot” and “slaying dragons.” A man shoots at a turkey, but the turkey is not seen until it’s on the table and cooked.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 Light Misuse: A woman calls the west “godforsaken,” though Marty says that that isn’t true.

Disturbing Content: 2/5 Emotional and Light Scary Content: A man dies and is wrapped in a cloth. Part of his face, which isn’t at all scary, is seen once. A woman sits in her covered wagon alone, rocking and whispering, “We’re fine.” Over five people are mentioned to have died in the past, one being hinted to have died of a sickness. Characters cry over people that have died. A chopping block has blood, feathers, and a chicken beak on it. A woman gives birth, though the viewers don’t see anything. Viewers can hear her yelling in pain. A barn catches on fire, and a man has burns, though they only very briefly and indistinctly seen. A woman says to wash it to prevent infection. A girl shoots into the sky so that her father won’t get lost. A woman says she won’t leave unless a girl were to “trying to kill” her.

Religious Issues: ½/5 Brief Mention: The traveling pastor of the town is called Reverend.

Magic: ½/5 Brief Mention: There is once a verbal mention that dragons can be in books.

Others: None

Overall: 2½/5 Almost Child Appropriate: Besides the bath seen, I would say this movie is recommendable. As a whole, the movie has a good Christian feeling in a story that isn’t necessarily about salvation, but about relationships and healing. This is a good movie to watch or to recommend to friends that aren’t Christian but that enjoy movies similar to Anne of Green Gables or Little House of the Prairie.

Books

A Comic Review of Welcome to Life After Eden

Welcome to Life After Eden by Dan Lietha

Type: Christian, Creation/Evolution

Basic Idea: A series of comics made to teach and encourage Christian doctrines, as well as humorously portray biblical “what-ifs.”

Quality

Stories: 4½/5 Amazing: The book contains both comics and writings from the author on why he does certain things. The comics are intelligent, logical, and occasionally cute. The doctrines of Christianity are defended quite well, explaining ideas such as how dinosaurs fit on the ark, why it is better to believe in a literal six day creation and a world wide flood as oppose to more liberal ideas, and why no one is good enough to earn their way to heaven. Not all of the comics are necessarily made for thinking, though, there are several comics made just for pure fun and entertainment.

The writings explain what the creator believes, where his ideas come from, and why he does certain things in his comics. One who wants to learn more about the After Eden comic as a whole or maybe a bit about what it is like to do his work will enjoy reading it.

Graphics: 4/5 Well Done: The art’s strength was its simple, realistic look. Though not overly detailed, people and objects were realistic and proportional, causing the comic’s art to do its job without overwhelming the comic or taking away from it.

Moral: 5/5 Excellent Morals: After Eden goes beyond teaching morals and branches into teaching Christian doctrines and apologetics. Ideas such as salvation, Biblical creation, and the flood are clearly and logically defended. The creator also makes biblical characters like Adam, Eve, Cain, and Methuselah seem more like real people. In his writings, he promotes godly values, such as being kind and polite in when approaching the lost. Overall, the comic is full biblical of morals and teachings that everyone can apply to their life, especially Christians.

Overall: 4½/5 Amazing: This comic is strongly recommended for people of all ages and genders. Adults and children will laugh and think through this book, as well as learn some things about the creator and his ideas.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 1/5 Some Light Suggestive Content: A baby’s bare bottom can be seen once. It is said and shown that plants “are good way” to draw Adam and Eve before sin. A girl asks her mom “How could Adam & Eve have been in their ‘birthday suits’ when they were never born?” Adam and Eve kiss and hug once each, and once the two of them kissing is mentioned in speech.

Violence: 1/5 Light, Brief Cartoon Violence: A woman gets hurt off page by some rose thorns. A dinosaur bites another dinosaur in the neck. A boy pushes another boy. Some kids can be seen pulling a raccoon between them.  High heels are shown to be painful.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 0/5 None

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 1/5 Slightly Emotional Content: It is mentioned that a woman died, and a man sheds a tear. A woman cries because of something unknown that her husband said. There is mention of that sin causes death, pain, and disease. A man sits in bed sick with spots and a thermometer. It is mentioned that a real person got surgery. Dead animals are shown twice, and once an opossum plays dead. A fish eats another fish. A man’s tooth falls out. A fire burns in the background of one picture. The phrase “world war” is used. Adam and Eve’s gravestones are shown. A dinosaur is shown about to step on a man. Bees chase a frightened woman. A saber toothed tiger chases a man. There is mention of 9/11 and that cartoonists have paid their respects to it.

Religious Issues: ½/5 Brief Mention and One Error: The NIV Bible version is used. Things like evolution, multiple false creation theories, false flood theories, and the idea that the earth is your mother are all mentioned, but they are always viewed as untrue or negatively. There is a picture of a fish that becomes a frog creature, but it says this could not happen. There is a TV that can be seen showing the evolution progression. Charles Darwin is mentioned at least twice. Cloning is mentioned twice.

Magic: 0/5 None

Others: An unsaved man that appears in once comic wears an earring. The movies and TV series Ice Age, Evolution, and Walking with Dinosaurs are all mentioned, as well as a general reference to reality TV shows.

Overall: 1/5 All Ages Appropriate: Very little in the comic can be found to be objectionable, most of the content being used for humor or occasionally as a sign of sin. Some parents may want to wait until their children reach a certain age before they learn about things like evolution or faulty flood theories, but it is good for parents to be aware that all of these things are presented as wrong and illogical. Once a parent believes their child is old enough to be aware of such things, I believe that any child could read it and would benefit greatly from it. The recommended age is seven and older.

Other

How to Keep Your Kids Safe On Youtube

Every parent should want to keep their kid safe. Whether it’s from kidnappers, bad weather, or inappropriate music videos, parents usually want to keep their children and teenagers safe. There are some that believe sheltering children is impossible and unrealistic, but not taking safety precautions will almost always result in negative consequences. While nobody can ever be protected from anything, here is a basic guide about keeping your teenagers and children safe and monitored while they are on YouTube.

1. How YouTube works.

YouTube is a website where anybody can put videos of any subject on it. These videos range from professional movie trailers to poorly made music videos to free how-to crafting lessons. People then can type words into a search bar to find and watch these videos. Without an “account” (which requires an e-mail), one can only watch videos. If one has a YouTube account, though, one can “follow” a person, meaning that they are updated on that person’s activity on YouTube, and they also may officially like, dislike, and comment on other people’s videos or their own, letting strangers see everything they do. Finally, account holders can post a picture almost whatever they want as their profile picture.

2. How safe is it?

Those that do not have an account are not able to communicate with strangers, but are probably more likely to watch something inappropriate compared to those that do have an account. Without an account, certain videos will be blocked, but there are still quite a few inappropriate videos with sexual filthiness; strong, vulgar language; and gory violence as it is up to the person who creates the video to set limitations. One can sometimes get a hint at what they are watching from recommended videos in the “new” section, but this is not always accurate and can often have nothing to do with what they watched. Another downside is that the videos a person watches cannot be tracked in any way. Finally, too many children and teenagers are giving out their names, addresses, and ages to the public in YouTube comments and to “friends.”

People with accounts are open to communication with strangers, but there are several advantages. First, the account may be open on multiple devices, meaning everyone can share one account and everyone can track everyone else. Second, settings on what people are allowed to watch can be put up. Finally, all the videos and search words put in are recorded. If a family shares an account and checks up on each others searches, the risk of watching something inappropriate are greatly reduced.

3. Additional Risks

As you probably know, every system has its loopholes. Even if one has an account, one can take down the settings and delete video history and search words. All of these things can reduce the safety of having a YouTube account.

4. In conclusion: We recommend that if your child or teenager wants a YouTube account, certain steps should be followed. We advice that through childhood and most, if not all, of the teenager years, you and your child should share an account. When the child is old enough to have their own and you truly believe they are responsible, by all means, let them have one, but agree to certain things. We advise that you know the child’s password and occasionally check up on their account.

Most importantly, keep an open line of communication. Make rules about what they can and cannot watch very clear, as well as when, where, and with whom they can use YouTube. Be fair and genuinely listen to their opinion, but never forget the responsibility you have to keep them safe as a parent.

 

We hope this guide has helped you make better decisions for your family. If there are any other questions or maybe even additional advice, feel free to comment or send us a message through facebook.

Movies

A Movie Review of Gone with the Wind

Gone with the Wind by Victor Fleming (Director) and David O. Selznik (Producer)

Type: Historical Fiction, Romance, War

Basic Plot: Scarlett O’ Hara, a spoiled girl, lives through and is transformed by the horrors and brutalities of the Civil War.

Quality

Plot: 5/5 Excellent: Gone with the Wind is a perfect war drama. It has action, romance, horror, and history all mixed together to make a perfect story, with a few dashes of humor. Though in many ways a romance, Gone with the Wind deals with more than the chemistry of two characters; it deals with the hearts and the souls of the South during its most conflicting and traumatic time.

Acting: 5/5 Excellent: Acting is real and sensational. Major and minor characters create a fascinating world far different from our own, with realistic portrayals of emotion. All of the characters line up with the book and are easy to be imagined as the novel characters. Being a long movie, actors and actresses are also able to portray personality changes without differing too much as the movie progresses, mainly the main character Scarlett.

Costumes and Scenery: 4/5 Well Done: The movie portrays a paradise and a pit of hoopskirts and rags. From the affluent landowners to the slaves, everyone is well and realistically dressed. One thing I especially liked was that the outfits changed as according to the era. This attention to detail will be appreciated by those who study the social and cultural details of history.

As for the scenery, it is outstanding for a movie written in the nineteen thirties. The makers must have had a hefty budget, with the elaborate mansions, dramatic explosions, and beautiful farmlands.

Moral: 2/5 A Not Too Clear Moral: I’ve read the novel once and seen the movie twice, and have long concluded that the moral of the story is that selfish behavior, even for a good cause, will end in disappointment and disaster. Scarlett starts out as a spoiled girl and through tragedy grows into a self-centered woman, caring for little outside of fun and money. Believing this will bring through joy, Scarlett lives however she wants, not regarding her husbands, friends, or relatives. She eventually realizes that friends and family make you happy, not material wealth, but by this time it is too late. She has nothing left accept her cold, hard cash, all of the warm love she was once offered being gone.

Though this moral is good and applicable, it must be found with careful consideration. One could watch the movie and be so swept in the story that they miss the moral, especially if they are young. Many though, I believe, will also see the moral and realize the ere of Scarlett’s ways.

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: Gone with the Wind is a movie masterpiece, especially for the time period it was made. I would recommend the movie to teenagers and adults, though women may enjoy it more than most men.

Moral Content

Official Rating: G

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 3/5 Suggestive Sexual Content: Women are seen in dresses showing cleavage and shoulders. A woman pulls her dress lower, and she is reprimanded by someone for wearing a low dress in the morning. Women are seen in their corsets and drawers, sometimes by their husbands. A woman takes off her nightgown so it can be used to cover something, though none of the nudity is shown. There are eight kisses between married and unmarried couples, two of these being adulterous. Characters kiss others on the cheek and forehead. A woman once expects a man to kiss her, and he doesn’t. A man says a woman “needs to be kissed, and by someone who knows how.” A woman is in loved with a married man throughout the book and tries to convince him to run away with her once or twice; he always refuses. It is mentioned that a child was born outside of wedlock, and later the man is reprimanded for not marrying the girl before being with her. A woman’s reputation is mentioned to have been ruined because she was with a man alone, and she didn’t marry him. Some men take baths behind towels, though no nudity is shown outside the chest. A woman offers to be a man’s mistress for money, though he refuses and nothing to explicit is said outside of that the man isn’t “a marrying man.” A woman tells her husband that she won’t sleep with him and says that she knows a friend that lives that way. It is hinted that a man might have forced himself on his wife (in the novel he sort of does), though the next day it is revealed that she didn’t mind it. Some characters are briefly seen doing the can-can, showing petticoats and legs. A woman says that a man looks “at [her] as if [he] knew what I looked like without my shimmy,” and a friend reprimands her. A man asks his wife who the father of her child is; it’s his. A man mentions “pantalets” (a type of Victorian underclothing) in speech and is reproved. A man carries a woman because she is sick.

Violence: 3/5 A Fair Amount of Violence: A man mentions in speech that he broke his leg while riding a horse. A man and a child die from horse accidents. Characters mention wanting to duel. Two men aggressively attack a woman. A man kicks a door open. Characters are slapped four times. A woman lunges at a man and falls down a flight of stairs. A woman beats on a man. Characters threaten to whip their inferiors or worry that it will happen. One of these includes a man threatening his wife. Men are whipped. Men punch and shove each other, one or two to unconsciousness. Characters are shot and bleed. One of these instances is a woman killing a man in self defense. A man pushes a woman into a chair. A drunk man attempts to crush a woman’s skull, but doesn’t. He talks about ripping her apart, but says he won’t. Characters throw dirt, glass, porcelain, and water, sometimes at people, though not always hitting them. Characters whip animals. It is mentioned that a man shot his horse. Violence is sometimes joked about in speech, such as “make sure you shoot the Yankees and not the nag” (a horse).

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 2/5 Some Misuse: “Damn” is misused once. The word “hell” is used correctly once. “Gee” is misused once. People are called “darkie” and “poor white trash” several times each. “Wench” is used at least once.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 3/5A Lot of Fairly Dramatic and Emotional Scenes: Since the movie is set in war time, there is a lot of war drama and death. Dying men lie in hospital beds and streets, groaning and covered in blood and bandages. They loudly complain that they are in pain. A man’s leg is removed off screen and his screams can be heard. Buildings explode. A man and a girl die from horse accidents. A man goes into a deep depression after this. This results in a miscarriage. An animal dies from overwork and being whipped. It is mentioned that men die from various diseases. A man believes his dead wife is alive and talks about her as if she was. A woman sees her dead mother. A woman once has hospital blood on her apron. A man gets a head wound. A man stalks a chicken with an ax, though humorously. Characters cry for various reasons, such as war trauma and nightmares, and one part of the movie shows families crying over relatives that had died in the war. Characters talk about being afraid of dieing. “Death” is used for descriptive purposes. Characters talk about war and wanting war to start. Fainting is briefly mentioned about twice in speech. A woman tells a man that “[she’ll] kill [him],” but she doesn’t. A boy says he will “kill the Yankees” for killing his brother, though he is reprimanded. A character is accused of murder.

Religious Issues: 2/5 Brief Mention: Characters recite Catholic prayers once. Infant baptism is mentioned. A woman says she is afraid she will go to hell for living a certain way, and her companion says that for all they know “there isn’t any hell.”

Magic: ½/5 Brief Mention: “Dragon” and “fairyland” are used for descriptive purposes.

Others: Various alcoholic drinks are drunk and mentioned in speech. A man reprimands his daughter for drinking, and a husband mentions his wife’s drinking habits too her. A man is drunk once, and a woman says she hopes she gets drunk. A person is called a “drunken fool.” Characters gamble, once playing poker. A girl fetches a man from a saloon, though she doesn’t go inside. Characters smoke. A man marries his cousin, and another pair of cousins plans to marry, though they never do. Characters dance. Divorce is mentioned in speech, though no one gets any.

Overall: 4/5 Adult Appropriate: Several things in this movie could be seen as objectionable, such as the amount of war violence and the suggested rape scene. I will say for a war movie, it is fairly clean, but there are a lot of Christians I would not recommend this movie to. For those who would, I would recommend sixteen years old and older as a minimum and twenty-one as a maximum.

IMPORTANT: Whatever feelings that may have been expressed about the movie, I personally do not highly recommend the book, as it is much more descriptive in its sexual and content and has a lot more language.

Books

A Book Review of Unveiled

 

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Unveiled by Francine Rivers

Type: Bible Fiction, Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction

Basic Plot: Tamar, the daughter-in-law of Judah, lives a life of abuse and neglect from everyone she knows. Eventually she overcomes the abuse in her life through the power of God.

Quality

Plot: 4/5 Well Done: Considering Tamar is an often overlooked character of the Bible, the book makes for an interesting read. Tamar is little discussed and written about, especially when compared to more famous women like Ruth, Esther, and the Marys. For many years, I thought of her as merely a wicked woman that had slept with her father-in-law for no apparent reason, but this book kind of explains some customs and situations that may prove otherwise. Now, Francine Rivers is not Bible, of course, but she does open some new perspectives on the story I had never considered. Delving into characters hearts, the author creates a world that is raw and heart breaking, showing a what-if of Tamar and her life that attempted to be as accurate as possible. Another thing I liked was the lack of emphasis on romance. Though I like a good romance story, it was nice to see a Christian fiction book with a different topic, dark as it was.

Writing Style and Setup: 3½/5 Above Average: The story was written in a simple, not too descriptive style. Francine Rivers uses pretty descriptions of people’s personalities and natures. It lacked dullness and awkwardness that many romance novels tend to have.

The story was well paced for a novella. Events moved at a quick pace that did not take away from the characters and details.

Moral: 3/5 Good Application: The moral of Unveiled is one of persistence in good behavior, treating others well despite the abuse one may suffer. It also portrays a deep regard for respect for one’s superiors and meekness. All of these are well portrayed in the characters and the eventual consequences following good and bad behavior.

At the end of the book is a devotional, encouraging women to be both meek and courageous in the face of mistreatment.

Overall: 3½/5 Above Average: I have to say that this is the best Christian fiction book I have read in a long time. I don’t like most Christian fiction books, but this one does a better job than most I have read.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 4/5 Mature Non-Descriptive Sexual Content:  It mentions indirectly that a man spilled his semen on the ground, and in the devotional the verse directly says it. A woman brings the cloth to her father-in-law to prove it. A woman sleeps with her father-in-law so that she can bare his family a child. She does this by pretending she is a prostitute. It is mentioned that priestesses “perform public intercourse” to try to arouse Baal. A man says he will devote his daughter to this, and his wife is relieved when she knows it won’t happen. A woman performs superstitious rituals in an attempt to increase fertility and sensual love. A woman tells her son that he will die if he sleeps with a woman. A man tells his daughter to “play the harlot” so that she can have a child. She refuses. A man attempts to kiss a woman and he succeeds at caressing her and kissing her neck. A man kisses a woman’s palm in a platonic manner. It is mentioned that a woman is dressed a certain way to hide the fact that she is not curvy. Some parents save some blood soiled cloth in case they have to prove their daughter is able to bare children. It is mentioned that a woman was raped. There is frequent reference to a woman’s cycle. A woman hopes that a “boy’s lust will turn to love;” though it doesn’t. It is mentioned that a man married a woman for lustful reasons. A woman says and thinks she is being treated like a “harlot” and a “prostitute.” It is mentioned that characters “made crude jests.” A woman asks another who the second has “lain with.” A woman is called a “harlot.” It is mentioned that a man had no concubines. It is mentioned that a town has several harlots. It is mentioned that a man slept with prostitutes to try to forget his sins. A woman asks a man if another woman was “dressed as a harlot;” she wasn’t.It is mentioned that a man circumcises his children and that some grown men were circumcised. A woman allows a servant to watch her and her father-in-law to maintain her reputation. A woman is mentioned to be “buxom,” though it is not mentioned in a sexual way. None of the sexual scenes themselves are described, outside of the fact that a man spills his semen.

Violence: 2½/5 Abuse and Light Mentioned Violence: It mentions throughout the book that a man beats his wife, though the scenes are never shown. A man pinches his wife. A man knocks a woman over. A man talks about tripping a blind man over and mocking him. A man and woman get in a verbal fight that happens away from the main character; this fight includes throwing things. A father beats on his daughter once or twice, once accompanied by his brothers, and it is lightly described how the woman fights back. A woman threatens to beat and even kill her daughter if she acts a certain way. A woman yanks her daughter’s hair. A man mentions that his brother used to beat him. A man asks a woman if he has hit her to defend himself. It is mentioned that a woman once slapped her daughter-in-law. A man pushes a woman and bumps “a counter.” It briefly mentions once that a woman cuts herself to worship her false gods. Two men die from unknown causes. A man says he will burn his own child to the false gods, and his wife is relieved when she knows it won’t happen. A woman breaks an idol. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is mentioned. It is mentioned that some men destroyed a city. The performing of animal sacrifices is mentioned. A man thinks he should have spanked his children more. A man says that he’d “rather be stung by a scorpion” than be waited on by his wife. It mentions that a woman knows how men can be violent when they are angry.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 Brief Mention and Non-Swearing: It mentions that characters curse each other and call each other by rude names. It mentions that a man swears once, though it does not say what he said. A woman is called a “harlot” at least once.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 3½ /5 Emotional and Physical Abuse: A woman goes through a lot of emotional stress throughout the book, as she is ignored and abused emotionally by her family. A man is depressed and frequently thinks about how he sold his own brother into slavery. Characters cry a lot because of sad and fearful situations and abusive treatment. Characters die from divine intervention and disease. Several people are glad after a man has died. A woman mentions that she wishes a man would die, and later she talks about wanting a woman killed. A man wants to burn a woman rather than stone her so that it will be more painful. A woman’s servant worries that her mistress will be unable to have a child because the lady is being beaten. Women scream from being beaten and from other character’s deaths. Characters frequently threaten or hint at killing each other, though never does this actually happen. When a woman says she would “rather be dead,” a man says “don’t tempt me.” A woman tells another, in an attempt at kindness, that she hopes her friend miscarries. It mentions that a man sometimes wants to “hurl a spear” at his children. A woman thinks that suicide would be preferable than being a priestess. A woman wonders what will happen to her when her father dies. The second woman says she would hope that she dies if that happened. It is mentioned that men had fevers. A man believes that his brother is dead and says that he is; though he isn’t. A man says that God “can crush a man’s life with a thought.” A man talks about wanting to kill his sheep. It is mentioned that animals and plants die from various causes. The story of Joseph and his brothers is told, including the desire to kill Joseph, throwing him into a pit, selling him as a slave, and covering his clothes with animal blood after killing a goat. It is mentioned that a woman has a black eye, bruises, and blood wounds, all from domestic abuse. A woman’s hair is pulled and hurts.

In the devotional, it mentions that Joseph’s brothers are willing to let one of them die if it is found out he is a thief. It also mentions that a man will die of depression if his son is lost.

Religious Issues: 2/5 Brief, Descriptive Pagan Practices Viewed Negatively: Characters pray and burn incense to false gods. Characters exclaim things like “by the gods” a few times. A woman that is portrayed as wicked criticizes her daughter-in-law for not worshipping false gods. It is mentioned that to worship false gods, characters burn their living children and “perform public intercourse,” and a man promises to force his children into this. He doesn’t. A woman performs a ritual in an attempt to cleanse evil spirits from a building. The ritual is described in detail, but later it shows that the woman has a change of heart, praying to God instead. When a woman breaks an idol, her friend is briefly afraid of “the spirits” attacking. A man says he will tell his family that “the gods” have prevented his wife from having a child. A woman briefly wonders if there is no god before deciding that that is a silly idea. It is mentioned that a woman frequently has visits from a medium. It is mentioned that a man wants favor form various gods and that his wife makes a priestess outfit every year for their daughter. God is sometimes written “god” when non-believers refer to him. False gods are occasionally mentioned by name. Fate is briefly mentioned once in speech. “Haunted” is used for descriptive purposes.

The NLT version of the Bible is used. Some think that the salvation message in the devotional presents it to sound like one must merely say a prayer to be saved, mentioning the “prayer of salvation.”

Magic: 1/5 Brief Mention: A woman accuses and believes her daughter-in-law is a witch that killed her sons with magic spells; but she isn’t. A woman says she will curse a household, but she is stopped before she can.

Others: Wine is mentioned, and characters are sometimes drunk. Dancing is mentioned once for a description of ones emotions. “Gambling” is used for descriptive purposes. A woman plays a drum while a couple makes love.

Overall: 4/5 Adult Appropriate: I would not recommend this book morally to anyone under twenty-one. Thought he descriptions are not at all sensual, the book covers sexual taboos and subjects that many Christians may not feel comfortable reading about. Some may reasonably not want to read it at all.

Movies

A Movie Review of Persuasion (2007)

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Persuasion (2007) by Adrian Shergold (Director)

Plot: 3½/5 Above Average: The story had a gloomy, romantic feel. It moved at a good pace and focused more on the romance and dreaminess of the story than the practical elements. Scenes focused more on marriage and courting than on philosophy and prose. The only major plot difference was the same plot difference in the 1995 film, that a certain character does not marry another for different reasons than the ones stated in the book. This was not major, but a bit disappointing.

Acting: 4/5 Well Done: The acting was believable and emotions well played. The acting was done similar to the rest of the film, romantic but believable. Characters portrayed anger, sorrow, and bitterness may have not been presented in the most realistic way when looking at it practically, but when looking at it romantically, there is little to no objections that can be found.

Costumes and Scenery: 4/5 Well Done: The costumes and hair were beautiful. They were not extravagant to the point of unbelief, but they were pleasant enough to enjoy looking at. They were also more modest than most dresses of the era tend to be. They were still lower than would probably be completely appropriate, but they were not obscenely so as many Jane Austen movies are.

The scenery was beautiful and believable for the era like the costumes were. The homes were not overdone, but not near as mediocre as the 1995 one.

Moral: 2/5 A Hard to Read Moral: The moral of this movie was a lot less expounded on, if at all, then the 1995 version. The temperance between being easily persuaded and being headstrong is not discussed, though the events that cause this conclusion do happen. There is some discussion on being loyal to the ones we love, but this was done more for romantic purposes than a moral. The most moral was shown in Anne’s distaste for rich, high bred society in favor of kind, intelligent society- if poorer. It is discussed and shown in action a few times, but I believe the emphasis was still much less on the moral than on other aspects of the show, making it less noticeable.

Overall: 3½/5 Above Average: I found that the 1995 movie disappointed me in many ways, thought the 2007 one does lack some of the things the other movie had. The movie from 1995 had more substance and logical discussions that followed the original novel, as well as was more accurate. The moral was clear and some very interesting logical discussions occurred. The 2007 movie was definitely much more beautiful than the 1995, as well as had a much, much better build up of romantic chemistry and tension, but the 2007 movie lacks at least half of the discussion and philosophy of the first, making this movie less substantial than the 1995 one. Therefore, if we consider only the Quality Content rating (not the Moral Content rating) I would recommend watching that a person looking for a visual of the romantic buildup and beauty watch the 2007 movie, and a person looking for a visual of the philosophy and moral to watch the 1995 one. I believe girls and women twelve to adult would like this movie best.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 2/5 Suggestive Content: A naked statue of what I believe was a man can be seen once, though the bare legs are completely shown, none of the private area is. There is brief artwork that shows shirtless men and a woman’s bare shoulder. Many dresses are partially low, and one woman is seen in her under dress, though in comparison to many movies set in this era, most of the dresses were more modest than usual. It is mentioned in speech that a man plans to have a woman made his mistress after he is already married. Men kiss women’s hands. There is one friendship kiss on the cheek between girls.

Violence: ½/5 Light Violence: Men talk about guns and hunting one or two times each, and shoot gunshots into the air at least twice.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 2/5 Some Misuse: God’s name is taken in vain at least three times.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 2/5 Some Emotional and Disturbing Content: A girl jumps from a ledge, causing her to be in a coma for many days. She eventually comes out of it, and little of the event besides her fall is shown. Some blood stains her hat. A boy falls out of a tree and his shoulder is dislocated. Viewers can hear the crack as the shoulder is put back into place. There is discussion of people that have died before the movie began, and a man is in a slight depression from the death of his fiancée. Characters cry a few times from relationship drama. A woman is a hypochondriac and claims to be always ill, though she probably isn’t.

Religious Issues: ½/5 Brief Mention: A mentioned man is mentioned at least once in conversation to be a curate. A woman is mentioned to be a godmother.

Magic: 0/5 None

Others: Characters dance twice.

Overall: 2/5 Children Appropriate: As a whole, this movie is a bit cleaner than the 1995 one. I would recommend the movie morally to children ten and older.

Special Messages

Celebrating 100 Post!

This is my 100th post and I am so excited and happy! First of all I want to thank God for letting me get this far and giving me the ability to write at all. Next, thank you everybody that has ever followed, liked, commented, or even just read any of our posts. We hope we’re helping you know what is really in your entertainment, as well as letting you hear about the Gospel. Lastly, I want to thank my family for personal support.

Next, for fun, I wanted to list some statistics.

The most viewed article is… An App Review of Vloggers go Viral. I feel a little guilty because when I wrote it I wasn’t trying my hardest. I was going through my “I have to write two articles EVERY week!” stage and felt terrible about how bad it was. Other articles though, I pour my little heart and soul into and got no response at all except maybe one view. Why? WHY?! It’s OK though. Maybe that’s just God’s will, I don’t know. Whatever happens happens though, so you have to try to be cool about it.

The most liked article is… Which One Is the Truth? which has seven likes. Though it isn’t a review, if you haven’t read it, I recommend it highly.

The most interesting search bar was… kaoru mori marilyn monroe. Apparently I mentioned in a blog post that the author Kaoru Mori liked Marilyn Monroe and someone found the article that way… Probably one of my more interesting search bars.

Currently there are 33 followers. There are poets, photographers, theologians, political posters, and fellow reviewers, as well as some other odds and ends. Thank you all so much for following!

Again, thank you everyone who has been involved. I am so excited for another hundred post over the years!

Love and God bless – The author of Christian Entertainment Reviews

Books

A Book Review of Chinese Cinderella

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Chinese Cinderella by Adeline Yeh Mah

Type: Biography, Child Abuse, China

Basic Plot: Adeline Yeh has grown up abused by her siblings and stepmother for being the “unlucky” child in the family. Though hope is dim, she endures through despair until she can fully see it.

Quality

Plot 4/5 Well Done: Though it’s hard to judge a book based on real events such as a biography, as I believe delivery is more important than content, I can still say that the story of this book was both heart wrenching and gripping. Though a child’s book, young and old will feel the human pain of Adeline in her childhood. In it is nothing to bore or make the story lacking.

Writing Style and Setup: 4/5 Well Done: The style was simple and direct but used a descriptive vocabulary. Most of the grammar was correct, though there were a few things that were not technically right.

The story started and ended well and had a good pace. Since the story is directed at children with little to no hope, it makes sense that it is set only in her childhood. The story moved smoothly, not dwelling to long in one place or briefly jumping over another.

Moral: 4/5 A Very Good Moral: The most important moral in Chinese Cinderella is the overcoming of despair in Adeline’s life. Adeline believes and is often told she is a failure, but she still tries her hardest to be the best she can be. She is academically very successful and is very intelligent, despite her family’s abuse. She also is encouraged by her a few people to keep trying her best. Hope of change was what kept her doing her best. Children and adults should remember to hope for change as long as they are alive. Sadly, Adeline mentions God rarely, occasionally and briefly hinting that she even doubts his love and existence because of her cruel life. This is never stated directly, though.

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: As a whole, I think children twelve and older will find the story fascinating. It is written well and is interesting for children. Even if you are an adult, you will no doubt be feel and empathize with the pain Adeline goes through, though we may not understand it. I believe both boys and girls will be interested in it.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 1½/5 Mention of Mature Things: Adeline mentions that her breasts are growing and that she uses underwear as a substitute for a bra. It is mentioned that a girl and her mother wear “padded bras.” Some boys are joked to have had “taken the vow of chastity and abstinence” when they hadn’t. It is mentioned that two men have another lover besides their wife, and that one man’s lover was a bar girl. In her family photographs, one girl’s shorts are over her knee by a few inches. Boys are mentioned to have whistled at girls. A girl briefly jokes about going out in clothes she thinks are “skimpy.” “Naked” is used for descriptive purposes.

Violence: 1½/5 Some Non-Descriptive Violence: Adeline is slapped by female adults and children in her family. A boy pull her hair, hit her twice on the head, and twist her arm. A dog bites her wrist. A toddler pushes away a woman, and the woman reacts by repeatedly and angrily slapping the child. The fight results in a woman’s necklace breaking. It is mentioned that a soldier kicked and smacked a boy and that people are afraid they will be “punished or… killed” by the soldiers if they do not bow to them. A boy once says his brother beats him up. A duck is attacked by a dog. A man whips his children twice with a dog whip. A boy accidentally hits a man on the head with candy from a slingshot. A ball hits a girl on the head, and it hurts. A boy tries to drop books on an old man’s head but fails. A boy pulls out a man’s nose hair. Adeline tells a friend she does not like dogs because “[t]hey bite.” A man and his grandchildren do a martial art, and kung fu is mentioned twice to be in stories. There are descriptions that use violence.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 Brief Mention: “Gee” is said once.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 2½/5 Intense and Emotional Content: The story revolves around the emotional, physical, and verbal abuse and sometimes neglect from both adults and children. One of the most traumatic events was when she was tricked in to drinking urine. She is also bullied verbally by one girl. It is mentioned that her mother died from a fever shortly after Adeline’s birth, and that Adeline is hated and accused of causing her death. She is told by her brother that her grandmother will come back to life at midnight. Two people die, and funerals are held for them. One of them dies from a stroke and is said to have been “frothing at the mouth.” It is mentioned that a man was selling a child. The bombings of Pearl Harbor and Japan are mentioned. Twice a boy threatens to beat up a grown man, though he doesn’t. A woman has bound feet, and seeing them is described “like watching a horror movie.” A woman describes both the process and pain of foot binding, describing it as “torture.” A woman mentions “getting a headache.” A girl is once mentioned to have arm trouble from an accident when she was born. Children don’t want to eat duck because they have ducks for pets. Adeline gets pneumonia and has to go to the hospital. People throw up from stress and sickness; cry from abuse and from people dying; and scream words at each other. It is mentioned that babies are “left to die” in the streets and that children are starving. Revolutions and various wars are mentioned, and the war filled history of China is told, though not in gory detail. The newspaper is read out loud, and it mentions war, mobs, casualties, and riots.  Blood is mentioned at least twice times, sometimes from people or an animal. A duck’s dead body is described in detail, though it is not much more than a broken, bleeding leg. Adeline wonders if any injuries show on her face, though whether she actually has any or not is not said. “Deathly,” “ghost town,” “grave,” “leper,” “scarred,” “tombs,” and “war,” used for descriptive purposes. A boy tells a girl to “[d]rop dead.”

Religious Issues: 2/5 Rituals and Brief Mentions of Other Religions: Throughout the book, Adeline goes to Catholic convent schools run by nuns that are called “mother” and “sister.” The Franciscan Catholics, mass, Catholic statues, the Virgin Mary, crucifixes, catechisms, nun’s habits, incense, and rosaries are all briefly mentioned, usually only once. Children call their parents bedroom “the Holy of Holies.” A woman has a Buddhist funeral, and certain rituals such as burning belongings; mourning for a hundred days; and hiring monks to pray, chant, and sing are mentioned. Other less religious rituals are also mentioned. A man later has a Buddhist funeral as well, but no rituals are mentioned. Both funerals mention the use of Buddhist temples. Because some boys are bald, they are teased to be Buddhist monks and to have taken Buddhist vows, and one boy says it is “a Buddhist Monk Special.” It is mentioned that streets “were named after… Catholic saints.” A quote by Mother Teresa is mentioned. Adeline says the girls are “expected to worship” certain girls at school, though not literally. Different martial arts, such as Tai Chai and Kung Fu, are briefly mentioned. A woman is described as looking like a sphinx. “Demon” is used for descriptive purposes.

Magic: 1/5 Brief Mention: “Magic” is used for descriptive purposes and is in a book title. “Magical” and “fairyland” are used for descriptive purposes. A woman says that report cards and stories are “magic charm[s]” and “talismans.”

Others: A man says they should drink champagne to celebrate, though it is never said whether they drink any or not. A man that shows up once is a chain smoker and smokes in a classroom. A different man is once mentioned to be “smoking a cigarette.” A man and woman are mentioned to be “separated.” It is mentioned that a boy is teased and asked if he will grow his hair out into a pigtail, though he doesn’t. The Opium War is mentioned. A woman keeps a snuffbox as a keepsake of her father. American actors and actresses from the ‘50s are mentioned by name. One picture has a girl that may be wearing shorts. “Drunk” and “gamble” are used for descriptive purposes.

Overall: 2/5 Child Appropriate: The story may be intense for children under twelve, but I think that after that most would be able to handle it. Some of the religious terms and rituals may upset Christian parents as well.

IMPORTANT: Though the book Chinese Cinderella is recommended, this in no way means that the book Falling Leaves (a complete biography by the same author) is recommended. The content of the book is much more mature, being more graphic and using adult four-letter language.

Books · Graphic Novels

A Book Review of Dogman Unleashed

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

Dogman Unleashed by Dav Pilkey

Type: Graphic Novel, Superhero

Basic Plot: Dogman must again save his city from a variety of scheming, greedy characters.

Quality

Plot: 3½/5 Above Average: The story improved from the last’s books in about two ways. First, the book had one story rather than several small ones. This led to more room to a suspenseful story. The story was also more creative and clever, especially in its humor. Unlike the first book, only one instance of potty humor (which includes only a toilet,) and a several clever and witty scenes.

Again, the characters are cliché, but that is one of the reasons the series can be fun, as well as typical of children’s books.

Graphics: 3/5 Average: Although still childish in form, the graphics are usually neat and attractive. Though it is believable a child could have drawn them, they are not as childish and purposefully sloppy as the first’s books.

Moral: 1½/5 A Hard to Read Moral: Again, the only moral that can be seen in Dogman is the triumph of good over evil, and that’s only if you’re grasping at straws. The negative moral of ignoring authority to do your own thing is not mentioned in this book, taking away the negative aspects of the first.

Overall: 3/5 Average: As harsh as I was with the original Dogman book, I will say that the sequel is much better. The art is more relaxing on the eyes and the story witty, entertaining, and laced with intelligent humor. There is much less potty humor (which I am very thankful for) and the rebellion against authority is cooled down. I would have to say that I recommend this book, mainly for boys six to ten.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 1/5 Some Light Suggestive Themes: Dogman sniffs dog’s behinds three times, one dog being a girl he has fallen in love with. A cat makes a bunch of people (both men and women of various ages) fall in love with him by using a love ray, who then beg to kiss and marry him, though he has no interest in either. Though the scene is done completely for humor’s sake, some of the flirtatious comments given by Petey’s admires may not be in agreement with parents, including “Hubba-hubba!”, “Give me some sugar, baby!”, and “Granny needs some tender vittles!” A couple of times, Dogman wiggles his butt like a dog would when he gets excited. There is a reference to the song, “I Like Big Butts,” by a pair of scissors that says “I like big cuts and I cannot lie,” while trying to cut a characters behind.

The only possible potty humor in this book is when a character overflows the toilet to help him escape prison.

Violence: 2/5 Some Light Violence: Several objects are thrown at a piece of machinery. Characters fall off of things, are thrown through buildings, fall head first on the ground, jump on each other, and hit others on the heads with a rock, usually only once each. A character kicks a criminal, and a dog bites a criminal. A character runs a car over. A character says he was crushed by a billboard, though it’s really a piece of flat paper; a character believes this and begs him not to die as well as calls the ambulance. “Kung-Fu Kicking Feet” and “Supa-Punching Fist” are some of the mentioned abilities a man has.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 Slight Misuse: “Gee” is used once.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 1/5 Slight Disturbing Content: Dead fish bodies are shown, and a dog likes to roll in dead fish as well as once wants to buy one. A man and dog are injured by a bomb, and almost die. They are saved by combining the head of the dog and the body of the man. Throughout the book, one can see the stitches on Dogman’s neck. A character’s arm gets hurt after trying to yank out ball caught in Dogman’s mouth. A character threatens to hurt another with a rock if he misbehaves, though the threat doesn’t go through. A T-Rex skeleton chases Dogman through the town. The previews show characters getting chased by a flying fish and an airplane. A character cries when he believes another character has been crushed flat, and the supposed injured character cries a little, although this is all done completely for humor.

Religious Issues: 1½/5 Some Mention: A character reads a book about body snatching; he exits his body, but fails to get inside anyone else’s (as far as we know.) A character tries uses his mind to move things, calling it “telekinetic.”

Magic: 2/5 Some Magic: Some characters bring another character to a witch doctor, who looks like a wizard. He has both “Living Spray” and “Obey Spray,” which are used on various characters. When a character dies, he says what the wicked witch of the west (from The Wizard of Oz) says when she dies.

Others: A male cat causes both men and women humans to fall in love with him. They beg to kiss and marry him, which he refuses. This is completely done for humor, and was most likely not done to promote anything sinful (though that could be speculated.) There are a few references to pop culture things through puns, such as “Jurassic Bark.”

Overall: 1½/5 Almost All Ages Appropriate: A majority of the content that could be considered questionable (such as a dead fish obsession or a male cat making humans of genders fall in love with him) are all done for the purpose of humor, and have little, if any, inappropriate or disturbing features about them. There is also much less potty humor in this book. I would recommend it for children six and older, when it comes to morals.