Winston Churchill: Christian Encounters Series
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Christian Encounters, a series of biographies from Thomas Nelson Publishers, highlights important lives from all ages and areas of the Church. Some are familiar faces. Others are unexpected guests. But all, through their relationships, struggles, prayers, and desires, uniquely illuminate our shared experience.
Winston Churchill captivated the world with his voice and his writings. His books and speeches ooze with patriotism and faith in a just God. But he wasnt always known for his oratory skills, his faith, or his ability to captivate. In fact, as a child, he was small for his age, accident-prone, and frequently sick. To make matters worse, he was stubborn and self-centered, had a lisp, and did poorly in school.
Born to an aristocratic family, young Winston was whisked off to boarding school at an early age, ignored by his parents, and left in the care of a nanny, Elizabeth Everest. But Everest excelled where Winstons own parents had failed him. She nurtured and encouraged him, and shared with him her own steadfast faith in God, shaping the views and vision of the persistent little English boy who would become one of the most influential men in history.
John Perry graduated cum laude from Vanderbilt University, with additional studies at University College, Oxford, England. Before beginning his career as an author in 1997, he was an award-winning advertising copywriter and radio producer. John has published 21 books as an author, collaborator, or ghostwriter. He is the biographer of Sgt. Alvin York, Mary Custis Lee (wife of Robert E. Lee and great granddaughter of Martha Washington), and George Washington Carver. Among other books, he has also written about the 1925 Scopes monkey trial (Monkey Business, with Marvin Olasky, B&H Publishing, 2005) and contemporary prison reform (God Behind Bars, Thomas Nelson, 2006). He is a two-time Gold Medallion finalist and Lincoln Prize nominee. He lives in Nashville.
Christy Lockstein4 Stars Out Of 5Insightful look at a great man's faithNovember 2, 2010Christy LocksteinQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4Christian Encounters Winston Churchill by John Perry is a insightful look at one of the most fascinating and important personages of the twentieth century. Winston Churchill came from a titled family dating back centuries in English history, but he was always determined to make his own mark on the world. Perry's book focuses much on Churchill's faith, but he also gives a brief but interesting biography of his life as well. Churchill's faith changed throughout his life from a passing belief in God with no actions to demonstrate it, to a deeper feeling late in life when he looked forward to his time in Heaven. Many of the two-times Prime Minister of England's speeches are here, including some of his prescient words about the build-up of Nazi Germany in the days before WWII, as well as his inspirational talks that motivated a nation to stark rations (while he continued to live in unabated luxury) and to fight to the end. Perry really does capture the man in his egotistical belief that God had created him for great things, his refusal to live within his means, and his occasional rewriting history in his many books, but he also portrays a man who had a great influence in history. If you're looking for a indepth biography of Churchill, this is not the book for you, but if you are looking for an interesting look at the important points of his life, an insightful look at his personality, and an studied look at his faith, this is an excellent read.
JenniferBCanadaAge: 35-44Gender: Female4 Stars Out Of 5June 7, 2010JenniferBCanadaAge: 35-44Gender: FemaleBy anyones estimation, Winston Churchill is one of historys most charismatic and memorable characters.Having been publicly educated (and not having read extensively on Churchills life, I hoped that he might have held a faith that I was unaware of. This doesnt seem to be the case. Though John Perry does try to make a case for the mans spiritual beliefs, these quite clearly do not fall in line with depending upon the person of Jesus Christ as savior. Rather, by his own admission, he rejected Christianity, and held a belief system that can be more accurately classified as agnostic believing in some greater universal power at work but refusing to truly worship it, or become specific.Though Perry quotes extensively from Churchills own letters we never see evidence of a walk with Christ. In his public speeches God is given due place, but we find this in any Christian countries when politicians speak regardless of their own personal faith. Clearly Churchills God is not truly the Judeo-Christian God, creator of the universe, but rather a creation of Churchills own one who plays by Churchills rules and expectations, and not by His own. We can only judge Churchill to be a Christian if we adopt a very, very liberal point of view that accepts anyone who even vaguely believes in a higher power as Christian, and that we cannot do if we wish to hold to the biblical gospel.Still, this biography is a brisk and fascinating romp through the life of this man who was clearly used of God during a very dark time in the history of both Europe and the world. If youd like to learn more about Churchill and his spiritual beliefs, Winston Churchill is a great place to start just dont expect to find a brother-in-Christ within its pages.
Chris Horton2 Stars Out Of 5May 18, 2010Chris HortonWinston Churchill is one of my favorite figures in history. I've read several great biographies of him and countless other books of WWII that detail his life and role in the war.Winston Churchill by John Perry is part of the Christian Encounters series, which takes a different angle on the life of Churchill. The point of this series is to explore the faith of these historical characters. I was disappointed with this premise as the book didn't give much of an indication that Churchill was a believer of Christ. I so badly wanted some evidence of faith in his life, but there wasn't. I still enjoyed the biographical sketch of the book and it is a great introduction to Churchill's life, but I am not sure I would include it in this series with the other figures who clearly were devout in their faith!With the vast amount of great biographies of Churchill, I can neither recommend this as a strong biography nor as a strong part of the Christian Encounters series. It is a very brief introduction into his life and thus should be read as such. I cannot endorse in any other way. Don't expect to be drawn into the writing as it comes across a bit stiff and dry. It is a small glimpse into a very complicated life.
Hailey3 Stars Out Of 5May 17, 2010HaileyI recently received and read Winston Churchill by John Perry free from Thomas Nelson. I was excited to receive this novel as I am a huge history buff and have always liked Winston Churchill. The book begins with Churchill's childhood. There are many stories, especially involving his nanny, about young Winston. I found it interesting that like many "great" men, he was not the best student. His parents were hardly ever around and it seemed he was always moving to new boarding schools. The story moves quickly to his adult life, and involvement in politics. Overall, I feel the author covered both parts of his life well and gave the reader a good overview of his life. Honestly, the book starts out really slow. However, once the author moves past the first chapter, it picks up and I found myself enjoying the novel. The only complaint I have is the Christian aspect- I feel that the author awkwardly stuck in facts about Churchill's faith, and the book was more of a biography than a exploration of Churchill's beliefs as I expected. I am curious to read other books in the series to see if the author follows the same format. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 : Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
Lisa Lickel4 Stars Out Of 5April 22, 2010Lisa LickelPerry takes the reader back to the nineteenth century to make the case that Churchills upbringing factored strongly into the development of his character. Drawing strongly upon Churchills autobiography, Perry draws conclusions about how Churchills society parents, particularly his father who died at a young age, took a back seat to the nanny who essentially raised Winston and his brother. Elizabeth Everest taught the boys about matters of faith and behavior, strongly influencing in particular Churchills decisions regarding church attendance and behavior both in and out of the classroom. Because she spent more time with Churchill than his parents, her lifestyle choice was more of a role model.Churchill served the world during one of the more insidious periods of history. He did what he felt had to be done to preserve the best of the civilized world and his influence no doubt changed the course of history. Perry does a nice job of condensing a huge life into an easily understood and less daunting read than a several-hundred page biography for those readers who like a nice little bite of history to help us understand better how certain events unfolded.
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