I haven’t read these books myself, but I have them on my list to look into.
“The ancient muse of the golden age of Roman literature has stirred once more, this time within the mind of Claudio Salvucci, native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania but with roots that extend back to his ancestral home in ancient Latium. A student of the classics from his earliest years, the author has crafted a work which builds upon the fragmentary record of the founding of Lavinium left us by Livy, Dionysius of Halicarnassus and others; all the while giving an obvious nod towards his Vergilian mentor. Drawing not only from the classical tradition but also from alliterative Anglo-Saxon poetry and classical translations, the author has managed to craft an epic style in modern-day English which is both musical and majestic. Set in ancient Italy, The Laviniad picks up the tale following the death of Aeneas, when his young son Ascanius is thrust to the fore as leader of the Trojan remnant in Italy. Following the trials of this youth in the face of his hostile Italian neighbors, the author spins his enthralling yarn with tight, compelling poetry. Read an excerpt from The Laviniad here.”
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson; review by Chuck Colson (Broken link, active June 14, 2005):
“This year’s Pulitzer Prize for fiction went to a novel that was described by its author as “a quiet book.” Marilynne Robinson’s novel Gilead is the simple story of an elderly Iowa pastor, John Ames. And it’s something of a milestone for contemporary Christian fiction. I’ve said before that we’ve seen a long, unfortunate slump in Christian fiction—a period when many religious novelists and publishers seem to believe that quality writing just wasn’t important. But these days, there are signs everywhere that we’re emerging from that slump. There is a renewed appreciation that good literature is important, impacting the imagination and the mind as nothing else can. And the honors showered on Gilead, including the Pulitzer Prize, are conclusive proof that if writers who are Christian hold themselves to high standards, and bring true talent, wisdom, and insight to their work, the world will listen and recognize the grace that moves their work.”
“Let’s say, just for the sake of argument, there are some intelligent people out there who have never read anything by Thomas Sowell. (I know, I know, the chances are remote, but work with me here.) They’ve never enjoyed his fascinating excursion into group traits in “Ethnic America,” nor his penetrating analysis of what has gone wrong with the schools in “Inside American Education,” nor his brilliant dissection of the inevitable pitfalls of regulation in “Knowledge and Decisions.” There is hope. His new book, “Black Rednecks and White Liberals,” offers a taste of some of his earlier work and a cornucopia of new insights. This book is so clarifying and wise even experienced Sowell readers will find much that is new.”