Category Archives: Book Reviews

“In the Name of Jesus” by Henri J. M. Nouwen

Ain-the-name-of-jesus-9780824512590 short, easy and poignant read, In the Name of Jesus, is a fundamental leadership resource for those in or working towards faithful Christian leadership. Framing his points around the stories of the temptations of Jesus and Peter’s call to be a shepherd, Nouwen reflects that Christian leaders are constantly tempted to be relevant, popular and powerful.

“My movement from Harvard to L’Arche made me aware in a new way how much my thinking about Christian leadership had been affected by the desire to be relevant, the desire for popularity, and the desire for power.”

Nouwen gives us tools to combat this temptation by encouraging us to truly act in the name of Jesus by: being ready to stand amidst what’s “relevant” and discern God’s actions there; turning to prayer; and being vulnerable to those you serve. In these pages Nouwen encourages us in Christian leadership to truly, truly love Jesus. A soul refreshing read.

“Stolen” by Katarina Rosenblatt, PhD


Stolen (Katarina Rosenblatt, PhD)
Written from the perspective of a survivor of the the web of sex trafficking, the book leads you chronologically through her journey–from the missing ingredients in her life that made a life of sex trafficking more accessible to the events that lead her away and into a journey of healing for herself and others.
It’s an eye opening story that helps the reader understand how subtly sex trafficking has invaded our suburban lives–and why we need to
be on watch for those at risk in our communities. -Book Review by Jen Hubbard.

“Sexual Detox: A Guide for Guys who are sick of Porn” by Tim Challies


detoxpornchalliesbookSexual Detox: A Guide for Guys who are sick of porn (Tim Challies)
We know that porn is everywhere, and most often it’s not whether a teen has looked at porn–but how much has been viewed and what sort of an impact that viewing has had. This book looks at reality and the impact porn has on present and future relationships in their lives. Each chapter has follow-up questions that challenge the reader to engage in an accountability relationship for help in working

                                                                 through their struggles. -Book Review                                                                    by Jen Hubbard


“I Hate You-Don’t Leave Me: Understanding the Borderline Personality” by Jerold J Kreisman & Hal Strauss


hateyoudontleavebookI hate you–Don’t leave me
(Jerold J Kreisman & Hal Strauss)

Written with a focus on borderline personality disorder, at heart, this book describes the aching in-chronic-crisis teens we encounter in our work everyday. And while not every teen has borderline personality disorder, youth workers working with teens in crisis will recognize the cycles of behaviour described and be encouraged with the strategies provided to assist teens as they navigate their messy lives. -Book Review by Jen Hubbard

“Understanding Sexual Identity” by Mark A Yarhouse

Understanding Sexual Identity          (Mark A Yarhouse)                               Teens these days are questioning everything–including their sexual identities. Rather than getting in caught up in a theological discussion (though he does discuss the Side A & Side B biblical approaches), Yarhouse talks about how to connect with teens and love them through their questioning. His strongest suggestion is to listen to their identity questions rather than labelling them–just as we would look beyond blue hair or piercings and attempt to see the teen beneath. He emphasizes that we look at the adolescent development taking place, rather than focussing on the questions that come up during this time. The book gives excellent suggestions for navigating conversations. -Book Review by Jen Hubbard.


“Reclaiming Our Prodigal Sons and Daughters”

Screen shot 2014-03-26 at 4.45.28 PMI can get frustrated at times with the lack of really good resources written to equip people working with at-risk youth from a faith perspective.  Although written a few years ago, you will be surprised at the number of things you’ll be underlining in this book! It’s practical, insightful, affirming and written by someone who has the years of experience to back their words.  Continue reading “Reclaiming Our Prodigal Sons and Daughters”

Book Review: “What Do I Do when Teenagers Deal with Death?”

“What Do I Do when Teenagers Deal With Death?” by Dr. Steven Gerali

This book is very academic. It reads like a text book, but if you are looking for a useful (although dry) look at youth work and death, it’s worth having on your shelf. For a small book it was a surprisingly thick read. The material is… Continue reading Book Review: “What Do I Do when Teenagers Deal with Death?”

“Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers”

“Straight Talk about Death For Teenagers -How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love” by Earl A. Grollman

The title doesn’t lie. This book was a shoot from the hip, no sugar coating, direct talk about the realities of grief. It didn’t step softly around the harsh truths of grief, often saying blunt stand-alone sentences like, “The person you loved is dead.” and “They are never coming back.” or “Every love story eventually ends in death.”

Having said that, I liked it. … Continue reading “Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers”

“Hope and Healing for Kids Who Cut”

“Hope and Healing for Kids Who Cut” by Marv Penner

Amazon description:  “You”ll hear stories from teens and young adults who struggle with the urge to hurt themselves, and you”ll learn to recognize the signs of self-injury. In addition, counselor and professor, Marv Penner will help… Continue reading “Hope and Healing for Kids Who Cut”

“Boys Adrift” by Leonard Sax, MD., Ph. D

“Boys Adrift” by Leonard Sax, MD., Ph. D

Boys will be boys but sometimes it seems forever. Twenty five year old men living in their parents house rent free with little interest in work, women or challenge. Sound familiar?… Continue reading “Boys Adrift” by Leonard Sax, MD., Ph. D