Turning Off Technology

Reviewed by Adam DeVille

better off

Questions about technology and community have been longstanding preoccupations of mine. I just recently finished a book published in 2004 that narrates a winsome journey of a young couple from Yale and MIT who ended up living with, and largely like, Amish for a year: Eric Brende, Better Off: Flipping the Switch on Technology (Harper Perrenial, 2005) The author ends with a few suggestions on how to live with technology, and to live with less technology. For those Eastern and other Christians interested in this kind of life, a life that seems at heart more monastic than most of us lead, you will find this an interesting book – very descriptive, and helpfully non-prescriptive.

Continue reading

The Alchemist

Written by Paulo Coelho, translated by Alan R. Clarke.

(HarperOne, 1993)

Reviewed by Amy MacInnis


I was excited to read this. It was recommended and given to me by a dear friend and I wanted to be able to tell her I liked it. At first glance there seemed to be no reason to dislike it. Millions have purchased the book, which has been translated into over fifty languages. Of particular appeal to the theologian in me, I discovered that the bestselling Brazilian author and his main character were Catholic, and that the story was a spiritual journey. I was eager to dive in, but the more I read, the more my disappointment grew.

Continue reading