Review: Joy Interrupted: A memoir of depression and prayer

by Geoffrey Lilburne, Garratt Publishing, 2018

Statistics say about one in eight men and one in six women in Australia experience depression at any one time, and this number rises in older people. Yet, many sufferers feel shame, even in the church.

The stigma about depression in the wider community is also present in the Christian community. This ought not to be. Depression exists and people live with it, still having full and accomplished lives.

In his book, Geoffrey Lilburne shares his story of depression and how he has managed as a Christian. Geoffrey frames his discussion in the context of faith and shapes his reflections using Psalms. Many Psalms allow a person suffering from depression to find, in Scripture, familiar feelings and thoughts. Continue Reading

Review: The Good Place

The Good Place, season one (2016) and two (2018) streaming now on Netflix

I started to watch The Good Place while wanting something light and fluffy to watch in the evenings which I didn’t have to think about too much. From its bright and happy promo pictures I honestly thought it would be just another over-the-top American sitcom.

Oh how I was wrong.

The Good Place, starring Kristin Bell and Ted Danson is not only hilarious, its twists and turns are completely unexpected. The show centres around main character, Eleanor Shellstrop who finds herself in ‘The Good Place’ after her unexpected death on Earth. However, she fairly quickly realises there’s been a case of mistaken identity and that she should actually be in ‘The Bad Place.’ Of course she makes a number of friends along the way, all with their own back stories, and hilarity ensues. Continue Reading

Review: 100 nasty women of history, by Hannah Jewell

Hatchette Australia, 2017

As many of us know all too well, regular history books are often filled to the brim with the discoveries, achievements and triumphs of men – and all too often those made by women are, well, glossed over. 100 Nasty Women of History is a refreshing look at history with a feminine – and comedically sassy – point of view.

I had heard of less than five of the women covered in the book, which is both an indictment of my own knowledge of women of history, and even more so of the way in which women are overlooked in our storytelling. Jewell ensures that in her coverage of these often forgotten members of our collective history, a sense of diversity and intersectionality is maintained. The stories of women of colour, women from the LGBTQIA+ community and women of different faiths and backgrounds are all metaphorically gathered alongside each other. As Jewell writes in the conclusion, should  they all have been literally in the same place at the same time, it would have made for quite the event! Continue Reading