Do you have time home due to restricted activities? How about an inspirational and on-sale book that brings you to a world where faith brings people together and hope is arising.
Try "Is Tim Ferguson light years ahead of his time? ... a book with simple ways that introduce deeper meanings
Do you have time home due to restricted activities?
How about an inspirational and on-sale book that brings you to a world where faith brings people together and hope is arising.
Try "Is Tim Ferguson light years ahead of his time? ... a book with simple ways that introduce deeper meanings
Please read reviews below. For purchase click: Purchase
"This is an excellent book combining new testament scripture , allegory , and science fiction time travel . It is a page turner."
Below are seventeen reviews mostly from Reviewers at the Onlinebookclub, an official review from Readers Favorite and an official review from Goodreads. Also included are several short review summaries from individuals who read the book and submitted the review directly to myself. The reviews have not been altered in anyway. I hope you will find them to be filled with interesting and useful information. The book is now self-published allowing the purchase price to be discounted. Soft cover was $6.99 and is now, for the months of February and March 2020, $6.49, while the e-book, playable on kindle and on I-Pad, is $2.99. Please enjoy the reviews which share much about "The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston".
But, before the reviews ... a brief story summary ...
Can you imagine receiving e-mails from a different planet? Welcome to "The Chest of Visions" by Tim Ferguson where e-mail messages are shared between youth on Earth and a young man, Mattpaul, residing in the parallel universe's world of Caperston.
Mattpaul lives in a world where there is no concept of the existence of a God, a Caring Creator. As a result, although his world has order, it does not have justice. There are Mountain People, who for generations have been deemed inferior by their neighboring Valley People.
Mattpaul meets a prophet, who brings the concept of an "unseen ruler" to Caperston, who can be perceived via a new activity- prayer. The prophet also calls out for equality amidst the Mountain and Valley People.
The actual chest of visions provides hope for Caperston's future. Will Mattpaul and his friends cling to this hope? Will the division between the Mountain people and the Valley people be broken down?
How will earth youth grow spiritually from their correspondence with Caperston youth? A vision of heaven helps answer one of the books perplexing questions, "Why do bad things happen to good people?"
All of these questions are answered in this tale that has inspired many youth to say "I can't wait for the sequel", which is coming in the fall.
Most Recent Review: March 26, 2020
James Penna shares ..."This is an excellent book combining new testament scripture , allegory , and science fiction time travel . It is a page turner. Elder Tim Ferguson is a longtime friend and he has hit a home run with this. I wish I could write like this. "
" What a refreshing and uplifting book. Just what I needed... making the hero of the book trying to overcome negativity really caught my attention."
Matt and Nancy, Methodists from Nebraska, Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, February 22, 2020
I am Matt from Nevada. My wife and I are active Methodists and our assistant pastor gave me a copy of The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston two nights ago after a discussion at our church amongst our members. Many of us were upset by the negativity we see as being pervasive in our country.
Some of us watched the debate on television, hoping to hear something positive to place hope in but it was dominated by personal attacks. Then the next morning, when I checked my cell phone for the news, there was a tweet from our President acting equally negative by calling opponents disparaging nicknames. Later, when I got home from work late in the day, there was a message from my wife, Nancy, that she had to work late and would pick up dinner on the way home. I was to expect her in two hours. I went to the TV to turn on the news and, guess what, more negativity. I turned it off immediately. Wondering what to do, I saw a copy of The Chest of Visions and picked it up.
What a refreshing and uplifting book. Just what I needed.
First, there is the cover by Jose Gutierrez. There is something very appealing about the youth drawn on the cover, particularly the hero of the book, Mattpaul, front and center and his red-headed girlfriend, Michaeling. The cover alone made me want to read more.
The book begins with an explanation of a parallel universe and the idea that there could be a twin-like civilization somewhere out there. Identical in biology but having evolved differently. Very believable.
Then there is the style of the book a series of pen pal like messages via e-mail transmission. The book begins with a message from the Caperston youth Mattpaul, who is hoping there is someone out there to communicate with and he finds people to do so in a group of Christian youth. We learn that the world of Caperston is a world of the Valley people, comfortable and feeling superior to the struggling Mountain people, who live nearby but whom the Valley people look down upon and consider to be inferior. Mattpaul is a Valley youth, who is troubled by this negativity. For me making the hero of the book trying to overcome negativity really caught my attention.
Mattpaul and a teenage friend, Huchfee, skip an afternoon at school to hear a prophet named Chihaysu, who teaches them of an Unseen Ruler, who is a Caring Creator. We learn that the people of Caperston have never had a concept of a God. The dialogue made me think about my understanding of God.
The book goes on to show the impact of this new conception of the existence of God and of a brand new activity called prayer. In Caperston it is the young people, who are ready to embrace these new ideas and it made me appreciate the young people on earth who have, amidst the negativity, spoken out calling for change.
The book is a short read as I was three quarters done when Nancy arrived. Her first comment was, "It's so quiet. No T.V. on?" to which I replied that I found something much better to do.
After dinner I was back to reading through the end of the story and there is a surprising ending which, at first made me upset but, as it evolved, it brought a tear to my eye and a fresh understanding of how God makes a difference in our world through people, in this book young people, who are willing to let his Spirit guide them.
The rewritten story of the Good Samaritan parable is priceless as is the description of Chihaysu's Speech on the Shore.
My wife, who is a much faster reader than I, had the morning off the next day and read the entire book. She agreed that it offers a needed message for our current day. She is encouraging me to share this review.
So, from Nancy and I we encourage you to read the Chest of Visions, which, in just a few hours, will uplift your spirits and rekindle the hope that God, indeed, is actively present to those who open their heart to his calling. The Chest of Visions is a book that assists you in looking inward at your own faith journey.
Nancy and Matt
For discounted, self published version of the book, click: The Chest of Visions Updated ... This version has only six reviews. Will you be the next to do so?
Czolly, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, July 22, 2019
Author Tim Ferguson, a retired social worker and an active youth group leader, found that teaching the gospel was often difficult. He devised a tale to weave together with the gospel of Jesus Christ to better support the youth under his tutelage in their faith and understanding of the Bible. Thus, The Chest of Visions came alive.
In a beautiful stroke of luck, and possibly divine intervention, Mattpaul uses a device that echoes a computer and discovers Tim's website. This aligns two different, yet similar universes, and friendships begin to bloom. Mattpaul illustrates to Tim about his life, his favorite game of kickuml, his struggles of knowing that soon he would be following in his father's professional footsteps, and the mysterious Chihaysu he has started to hear about from a new Mountain Person friend. He soon happens upon Chihaysu's sermon, which parallels the teachings of Jesus in our world, and firmly believes in the existence of God.
Simultaneously, Tim opens his website for others to question and speak with Mattpaul. Here Alex, a member of a youth group struggling with his faith after a tragic accident takes the life of his best friend, begins to relay his consuming darkness and emotions that have been suffocating his faith to Mattpaul. Together they relay their struggles and create a friendship that quite literally knows no bounds.
The Chest of Visions was an exquisite rendition of the Bible and the prophets therein. I relished in the simple, yet straightforward descriptions, and the feelings and components of religion and Christianity that intertwined together. It was easy to pick out the similarities between Bible parables such as the Good Samaritan and the instructions on prayer. When I have read similar novels, I have always felt that you run the risk of being overly didactic, but that was not the case here. Rather, one can empathize with the problems and faith-defining moments that our characters are facing. The simple yet beautiful illustrations added to the ultimate air of the book and created a stronger empathetic connection to the characters. I daresay there is not one thing I dislike about this book. This tome was also professionally edited, and I only found a few inconsequential errors such as missing commas or misspelled words.
I am more than happy to give The Chest of Visions a full 4 out of 4 stars. It was a rapid read that hooked me in from the beginning, and it was religious without being overly moralistic. I would recommend it to others, especially to youth that may be struggling with their faith or looking to reaffirm it. I'd like to give a special thanks to the author, Tim Ferguson, for an especially enjoyable read.
July 20, 2019
" Is Tim Ferguson light years ahead of his time and could this story be brought to life one day? Tim Ferguson has done a fantastic job seamlessly weaving two parallel worlds together."
Sophie , Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston,
Does your child have trouble understanding the word of God? Do you want to improve your own faith, but you don't have the time to consume 1,200 lengthy pages of the Bible? Then fear no more. The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston by Tim Ferguson is a refreshingly modern, religious book, ushering the Bible straight into the 21st Century. Based in the fantasy world of Caperston, the reader follows the engaging story of Mattpaul, a young man who wants to seek the greater meaning of life and his true vocation. Caperston is under the wrath of a prejudice ruler and the idea of any sort of religion does not exist. There is a social division between the two classes that make up Caperston - the Valley People and the Mountain People. Through the power of technology, MattPaul manages to make contact with two Christian youth members - Tim and Alex - via an online webpage. It is through this thread of online communication, Earth and Caperston join together. MattPaul shares his experiences of a teacher called Chihaysu, the Caperston version of Jesus Christ. Combining the historic, with a dash of the futuristic, important lessons from the Bible are retold through this compelling tale. For example, the parable of the Lost of Sheep. In Caperston language, a shepherd is a "goaderd" and a sheep is a "goada".
First of all, I find the easy, back and forth email text, a suitable writing style for this Sci-Fi approach towards the Bible. Tim Ferguson has definitely selected the most appealing way to share his story with the younger generation. It is clear he has done his research on his target audience, as the majority of young people have access to digital communication devices - phones, Ipads and laptops. This is how the youth of today ( and adults) mostly communicate, so young readers will be able to relate to the text of this book straightway. Gold star! Secondly, I love how Tim Ferguson has chosen to tell this story from a young person's point of view. It makes me wonder if this story was told through the eyes of an older person, would it have the same effect? Would it have the same innocence and child-like honesty? The protagonist, MattPaul, with his selfless attitude and kind spirit, instantly becomes a role model or even a friend for young readers. We see the world of Caperston through MattPaul's eyes. We see Earth through the characters, Tim and Alex. Which brings me to my next point. I admire the way Tim Ferguson has skillfully handled answering some of life's big questions we all have trouble answering on planet Earth. For instance, after the death of a close friend, Alex begins to doubt God's benevolence and questions why God would allow somebody so good to die? How can a life be cut so dramatically short without having the chance to truly blossom? We have all asked this question at some point in our lives. This book helpfully explains the answer, through the teachings of Chihaysu, so a child can hopefully understand. Furthermore, this book made me consider the endless possibilities of the world we inhabit. Is there something else out there? Is there an alien world similar to Caperston? Is Tim Ferguson light years ahead of his time and could this story be brought to life one day? Anyway, let's digress before I get too philosophical.
Additionally, the sketched illustrations by Jose Carlos Gutierrez, complement the book superbly. Again, this is another strong element that will win over the intended younger audience, as young people tend to respond better to images rather than words. The illustrations play an important role in this book, as they leave a lasting impression. Readers will be able to log the images of MattPaul and the other main characters in their minds. Towards the end of the book, there is Appendix One, providing a detailed account of the scientific elements behind this story. Very intriguing! There are also 10 lessons, which could be used as a point of discussion at Sunday School or in the classroom. These lessons encourage interaction and healthy debates amongst readers - a great way to touch upon life's issues and key values.
July 19, 2019
"What I liked most about this book are the simple ways that deeper meanings are introduced. The story of the young girl who was dizzy and had been made well again through prayer was an example of this simple way of delivering a message with an important point. The message that prayer is an act of faith is one that readers can understand and practice. ."
Vernalli, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, July 19, 2019
Fun and futuristic, The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is an entertaining science fiction/fantasy that closely emulates the life of Christ. This tale is told from an interesting perspective and involves a young man in another world and his communication with a new friend he has made on Earth.
The story begins with an e-mail from one world that is intercepted by a world in a parallel universe. The happenings on the world of Caperston are very reminiscent of the things that went on during the times that Jesus walked on this planet. Each e-mail relates short stories with questions and testimonies as the characters all learn about the goodness of God.
The illustrations in this book are fun and captivating. They give the reader a look at each character and illuminate scenes from the story. It struck me that this style of illustrating reminded me of the type of sketches used in comic books.
The writing style in this book is unique because it is presented in a long series of e-mails between characters. It's almost like reading mail belonging to someone else but in a good way. I believe that this style of writing will appeal to today's youth because digital devices are implemented throughout the story.
I liked the way that one of the main characters( Mattpaul) questions how he would handle different situations after hearing stories about how others acted. It demonstrates the act of listening to one's conscience and applying the knowledge of lessons learned.
I found the concept of taking Bible stories and applying them to a futuristic tale fascinating. It's evident that part of this plot's concept is the story of Christ with names and locations changed, but it is told in a new place and time to make it more attractive to young people who enjoy the science fiction/fantasy genre. By integrating individuals from two parallel universes, the author demonstrates the far-reaching aspects of faith and believing in God.
What I liked most about this book are the simple ways that deeper meanings are introduced. The story of the young girl who was dizzy and had been made well again through prayer was an example of this simple way of delivering a message with an important point. The message that prayer is an act of faith is one that readers can understand and practice. The story in Chapter One about the Mountain Man helping the stranded boatman reminded me of the story in the Bible of the good Samaritan, and I enjoyed the positive reinforcement of its moral implications. Note: I capitalize Mountain Man as it is in the book for consistency.
It was significant that the author included difficult topics and questions about which all readers would want to know. One of those questions is, "Why would God let good people die?" The explanations and shared wisdom in this book answer some of these questions in a way that may comfort readers.
One of the best things about this story is how it shares the ways that faith can grow. It will be an encouragement to young readers in their faith and learning. One of the reasons for this is the fact that there is a moral to each short story shared in this book. I believe that the book's intended target audience of youth is accurate. This book will appeal to young readers of all ages. Even though it may be a bit advanced for early reading levels, the book's illustrations will draw the interest of younger children well.
I could find nothing to dislike about this book. The formatting is clean, and it seems to be professionally edited. Although I found a few minor errors, they did not interfere with the flow of the story or justify a drop in rating. For these reasons, I am rating this book with 4 out of 4 stars. It would be useful in youth Bible-study groups. I recommend it to youths as well as adult readers who would like to learn about the concepts of Christian faith within the background of a science-fiction/fantasy setting. If you aren't interested in religion or Christianity, this may not be the book for you.
In terms of identifying the demographic audience, I feel Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston appeals to children and young adults of all races, social classes and backgrounds wanting to start their own personal spiritual journey. The message of the book could definitely appeal to those who are non - religious too, as it teaches the basic golden rules of everyday living, such as considering our neighbours - you don't have to be religious to follow this rule. It's just common courtesy.
I was a little unsure how I would receive this book at first, worried that it would be full of forced - fed preaching. But it was an incredibly interesting, touching read. Tim Fergurson has done a fantastic job seamlessly weaving two parallel worlds together. This book needs to be stocked in every church, classroom, library and bookstore. A great introduction to religion.
Is Tim Ferguson light years ahead of his time and could this story be brought to life one day?
Fun and futuristic, The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is an entertaining science fiction/fantasy
July 17, 2019
" The novel was written in a way that anyone could read it, even a child who may be discovering the presence of God in their life for the first time. Since the novel was written so basic, I feel like any Christian would be able to give this novel to their friend or someone who is struggling with their own religion in order to be reminded of why they began to follow God in the first place. "
dorebri2020 Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston,
The Chest of Visions is a religious fiction novel centering around the concept of multiple universes and introducing God to youth that were not previously exposed to his power. Written by Tim Ferguson, the story focuses on a new planet called Caperston, which is home to a society based on two individual classes: the Valley People and the Mountain People. The simple novel focuses on a young man named Mattpaul, who has his home in Caperston, and his correspondence with a young man on Earth named Alex. The novel is displayed as a series of blog posts and letters between the two through Mattpaul's advanced technology where they discuss the new topic of God in Mattpaul's world.
The story begins with a message from Mattpaul's compol(communication device) reaching Earth on a website. This website opens up a form of contact between Earth and Mattpaul's world, where Mattpaul is able to explore various culture styles different from his own. This leads to his introduction to the Bible and to the idea of God. As Mattpaul continues his study on the topic by interacting with a youth on Earth named Alex, a young man named Chihaysu enters the story. Shockingly, when he visits Mattpaul's village, he is also teaching Caperston the values of God and prayer in their lives. Instead of teaching the traditional values of the area, Chihaysu preaches how the Mountain and Valley People should love each other as much as they love themselves and should love God more than any ruler, which interests many of the people who listen but upsets many of the higher people in society. As the novel continues, Mattpaul describes how he became a follower of Chihaysu and God, similar to a disciple of Jesus, while trying to help guide Alex back to the way of faith. Eventually, Mattpaul stands up to the tyranny facing his town and begins to preach to his friends and family the manners of prayer and miracles, and promotes Chihaysu's message: love for all, no matter who they may be.
I genuinely enjoyed this novel primarily for its simple style and kind message. The novel was written in a way that anyone could read it, even a child who may be discovering the presence of God in their life for the first time. Since the novel was written so basic, I feel like any Christian would be able to give this novel to their friend or someone who is struggling with their own religion in order to be reminded of why they began to follow God in the first place. The message of love and faith also followed closely to the Bible, with Chihaysu taking on the role of Jesus in this story and promoting miracles. This parallel really sold the story for me, as it was like reading a simplified version of the Bible without worrying over the specifics. Also, since the message of love and equality was universal, the novel can be available for audiences outside of the Christian community. While the book is obviously religious, Ferguson does a great job of including other storylines such as youthful innocence, racial inequality, and loving everyone for being themselves.
The formatting of the novel was also extremely well done considering the difficulty of the style. Many novels written as letters back and forth tend to distract from the plot by being too simplistic or too forward. Instead, this book follows a style similar to pen pals writing back and forth, which allows for a lot of introduction on the characters and a lot of details that would normally be too much in a novel written in a different style. This letter style is also very direct, which made the story easier to follow. Another formatting feature that I appreciated was the drawn images that were added to the novel. It added another layer of imagery that I feel created a brilliant image in readers heads. Especially for younger kids who may be reading this, the visuals would help with the story building process and would create an enjoyable and fun atmosphere.
Unfortunately, I had a few issues with this book. The primary issue I had was how deep the topics covered were in comparison to the intended audience. The book centers around a concept of God being introduced to a new society and that basic idea could be handled in a lighter tone than what was portrayed in the novel. However, Ferguson brings in topics of death, genetics, and forced neglect and inequality towards other humans. He also includes an appendix that focuses on the technicalities of communication between Mattpaul and Alex that is extremely verbose. Since this section doesn't really bring anything to the novel and the book is purely fiction, I feel it could be removed without causing any loss to the plot... However, since I did enjoy the book overall, I must recommend it to any youth or adult who is struggling with faith and would like to reconnect to the roots of Christianity. The only people I would advise to not read the novel are people who genuinely hate the idea of God or faith. Otherwise, even if someone is not devoutly religious, I feel they would enjoy this novel.
July 16, 2019
I must commend Tim Ferguson for writing such a beautiful story in very simple words. It is a rare book, with a well thought out storyline, that presented the truth in its simplest form. ."
C-obi, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, July 16, 2019
The Chest Of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, by Tim Ferguson, is a series of letters written by four different individuals; MattPaul, Tim, Alex, and Huchfee. These letters were written to and from these four young men, over a period of months, beginning from the 28th of April and ending on the 30th of December. These four young men existed in two different worlds; Earth, and Caperston. The letters were shared through electronic means. As the letters were progressively written and shared, the storyline of the book was gradually unraveled. The letters were centered on a man named Chihaysu, who came to Caperston, sharing the knowledge of the man named Jesus, and how much God wants to be a part of the lives of the people. Mattpaul who lived in Caperston, eventually became his follower and shared his experiences with Tim and Alex. Huchfee was a friend of Mattpaul, who later became part of the letter sharing experience. Alex and Tim lived on Earth. These four young men shared their experiences, challenges, and raised questions that often puzzled them through the letters they wrote to each other.
The book was written in a very simple manner. It addressed very complex situations in very simple words. It raised very critical questions that often plagued the minds of individuals, especially young adults and gave very simple answers to each of these questions raised. When going through the letters, one could easily understand the basis of the story and what it is all about. One letter led to the other, simultaneously creating the storyline surrounding the book. It ended in a very unexpected way, as Huchfee was the one who replied to Alex's last series of letters. I never expected that... I must commend Tim Ferguson for writing such a beautiful story in very simple words.
What I loved most about the book was the simplicity employed in its storyline. There was nothing I disliked about the book.
The book was well edited and there were no errors found. The storyline was very interesting and easy to understand. The book also concluded with two appendixes that served as a study guide for youth groups.
I am rating the book four out of four stars. It is a rare book, with a well thought out storyline, that presented the truth in its simplest form.
I am recommending the book to the youths. It will come in very handy when there are certain questions to be asked.
July 16, 2019
"The Bible inspired authors for centuries, and Ferguson is one of those who have used it innovatively. ...I recommend this book to young and less young readers who like engaging and educational stories. In a world where religion is underestimated, The Chest of Visions is a refreshing read."
Fmd1821, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, July 16, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is one of the most interesting books for young people I have recently read. It all begins with Mattpaul, an inhabitant of a parallel world called Caperston, who gets in touch with a Christian youth group. They exchange e-mails and discuss religious themes. In one of these e-mails, Mattpaul reveals that an evil ruler governs his world. He has divided the valley people from the mountain people, considering the latter inferior. Mattpaul's world did not know anything about religion until the arrival of Chihaysu, who preaches a new message. After listening to Chihaysu, Mattpaul befriends the mountain people, but soon both he and Chihaysu will have to face the consequences of their actions.
I cannot stress the importance of the message of The Chest of Visions enough. Even though this book addresses young people, adults can learn something useful from it too. We are living in a world where divisions are the norm, and every time someone protests like Mattpaul and Chihaysu, persecution happens. Ignorance is the cause of this, and it echoes the ignorance of Caperston's inhabitants when they allowed their Ruler to separate them from each other.
The Bible inspired authors for centuries, and Ferguson is one of those who have used it innovatively. The Bible is important for The Chest of Visions in two ways. Firstly, the message of this book depends on Jesus's teachings. It would be impossible to write it without keeping in mind Jesus's deeds. Secondly, the Bible inspires plot and characters. Chihaysu's model is Jesus, as his words and actions reveal. Moreover, Mattpaul has the features of St. Francis (when he chooses to give up his privileges) and Joanne d'Arc (when he is in prison). It is remarkable that Ferguson has used this material consistently. Overall, The Chest of Visions is praiseworthy both for its important meaning and for its perfect structure.
Apart from this fundamental aspect, The Chest of Visions lingers on other important matters. The one I appreciate the most is the existence of evil. "Why bad things happen to good people?" One of the terrestrial youngsters raises this question because one of his friends has been killed during a robbery. He discusses it with Mattpaul, who adds his examples and experiences. His good explanation can bring some solace to suffering people.
I have to add that the idea that terrestrial and extraterrestrial people get in touch through e-mail is an excellent one. This is a very modern choice that will appeal to young readers. They will identify themselves with the group more easily.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. Even though there are a few typographical errors, they are not notable. I have found more annoying the formatting. There are improper line breaks and blank parts in the middle of the chapters. This said, I have to praise the many images that enrich the book. They offer another, direct way to access the text.
I recommend this book to young and less young readers who like engaging and educational stories. In a world where religion is underestimated, The Chest of Visions is a refreshing read.
For discounted, self published version of the book, click: The Chest of Visions Updated ... This version has only five reviews. Will you be the next to do so?
July 14, 2019
"The Chest of Visions is very well-edited, informative, interesting, and contains a lot of meaningful and important messages, not just for the Christian community, but for all people, because it does not only discuss spirituality but humanity as well."
Laila Hashem Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, June 19, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson describes the story of a young man named Mattpaul, who lives in a country called Caperston, where Christianity is not known. This country exists on a separate planet in another universe, but Mattpaul comes across a report about Christianity from Earth made by Tim Ferguson. He writes to Tim, inquiring about the Bible and describing events in Caperston, the people of which are split into the Valley People, who live more comfortably, and the Mountain People, who are poorer. One day, Mattpaul and his friend, Huchfee, encounter one of the Mountain People, who tells them about a man named Chihaysu and his claims about the existence of a God. Mattpaul attends a meeting hosted by Chihaysu and is moved by his speech and his call for equality between the Valley People and the Mountain People.
Mattpaul writes to Tim throughout these events, describing Chihaysu's teachings and God's messages but is doubtful of God's kindness as a result of his friend's death. However, as he continues to attend Chihaysu's meetings, Mattpaul inspires Alex with his heartfelt messages about his faith in God and prayer. Though he is devoted, Mattpaul still struggles with his faith as the Valley People attempt to refute Chihaysu's teachings with science and age-old traditions. Tension rises as Mattpaul struggles to choose between everything he once knew and this new ideology that he wants to embrace. The book provides many parallels between the messages of Jesus and Chihaysu, emphasizing the importance of love, hope, and faith.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars due to its well-structured nature, interesting plot, and important theme. Moreover, the illustrations that Ferguson provides not only spark the interest of younger readers but also give visual learners a method of better understanding the book and highlight its important messages. The lessons that the author presents at the end of the book, I believe, are very unique as they emphasize the many similarities between the teachings of Jesus and those of Chihaysu and provide a practical way to better understand the book and its messages through helping readers empathize with the characters and their motives. Lastly, the fact that the author demonstrates the perspective of a doubter, Alex, helps readers who may have similar questions discover their answers.
Of course, there are a few unnecessary or confusing texts that, if changed, would make the book clearer and help the readers better understand the storyline. For example, the first appendix, which describes the scientific process by which two individuals in different universes were able to communicate, in my opinion, is unnecessary and too complicated, especially if readers are young. Perhaps a better way of introducing this topic is embedding it within the story itself. Another minor but important inconvenience is the blurred text on all the illustrations. Lastly, the quote from the Bible on page 20, although relevant, implies that God favored those who believed in him over those who did not, but Chihaysu told his listeners on page 14 that "In God's eyes you [Valley People and Mountain People] are all equal." Although the author, on many occasions, makes parallels between the teachings of Christianity and those of Chihaysu, these two quotes are contradictory since most of the Valley People did not believe in God, while some of the Mountain People followed Chihaysu.
I believe the perfect audience for this book is the youth, particularly, those between the ages of 11 and 18 since they can understand its meaning, as its lessons affect their view of Christianity and moral obligations. Overall, The Chest of Visions is very well-edited, informative, interesting, and contains a lot of meaningful and important messages, not just for the Christian community, but for all people, because it does not only discuss spirituality but humanity as well.
Please note: during these trying times when America is called to limit contacts with large group gatherings, the Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston not only offers a novel for adults and youth "that may be struggling with their faith or looking to reaffirm it", it offers nine lessons at its conclusion to use to discuss the story in light of the gospel of Jesus Christ. These lessons could be completed online with a youth group.
June 19, 2019
"The teaching of Chihaysu is very similar to that of Jesus's. This way the writer sends out a beautiful message that no matter what religion you follow and what planet you stay on the teachings are the same. Every religion teaches the same thing. This is what I liked the most in the story."
Ghostfriend, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, June 19, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson makes you wonder if there is life in any of the other planets. The story is very interesting. It has been narrated in the form of conversations between two boys from earth and Mattpaul from Caperston.
A conversation starts as Tim a boy from Earth receives an email in his website from a young resident named Mattpaul of a distant planet, Caperston. The people of Earth are curious to know as much there is to know about everything and Tim was no less. His curiosity level takes a sudden hike as the conversation progresses. Tim learns a great deal about the people of Caperston.
In one such mail, Matt narrates to him about the preachings of Chihaysu. The people of Caperston are being preached the words of God by Chihaysu. Matt tells how he himself is a follower of Chihaysu and is also helping him in spreading the word of God.
The writer has built a very relatable and believable parallel world. Mattpaul tells in one of the emails about the differences between the valley people and the mountain people. The differences are similar to what we see around us. The imbalance in distribution of income and the way the valley people avoid interactions with the mountain people are very relatable as we see huge discriminations around us on a daily basis. The writer chose not to create a perfect world instead to create a world that is more realistic and relatable. The teaching of Chihaysu is very similar to that of Jesus's. This way the writer sends out a beautiful message that no matter what religion you follow and what planet you stay on the teachings are the same. Every religion teaches the same thing. This is what I liked the most in the story.
The story is very smooth. The style of narration is very simple and easy to understand. Both, the concepts of religion and parallel world could be a very serious and complicated issue but the writer makes it look very simple and interesting. There are many sketches included in the book as the book is aimed mainly at children. The labelling in these sketches are too small to be able to read without much effort. This was the only demerit of this book but given, the other aspects of the book, I'll overlook this and rate this book 4 out of 4 stars.
I didn't find any error in the book. It seems to have been very well edited. I'll recommend this book to kids above 9 years of age . This book teaches the words of God in a very simple manner and it'll be very helpful for kids above this agelimit to easily understand the preachings of God. Adults can also read this book as there are a lot of things to be learnt from it.
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"Reading about how encouraging these teenagers, who are from different world and have never seen each other, were to one another was really heart warming."
Roxanne Thomas, OBC Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, April 12, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is actually about religion. It discusses the Bible and Jesus's teaching. The Chest of Visions is written in the form of letters which are sent electronically. This communication takes place across the universe between a place called Caperton and Earth.
Mattpaul is from a place called Caperton. He lives with his family. His best friend's name is Huchfee. One day while using his compol, (something like a tablet or laptop) Mattpaul accidentally came across an electronic news letter where he read about the Bible and a man named Jesus. This news letter was written be someone named Tim, who lives on earth. Mattpaul and Tim began to exchange messages. Through Tim, Mattpaul was introduced to Alex. Chihaysu, also from Caperton, teaches about the Bible and God's word. Mattpaul will be faced with some tough decisions to make. Alex' life is at a crossroad but they both will find comfort from each other. The identity of Chihaysu will be unmasked.
I really enjoyed reading this book. I liked how it was structured and formatted in the form of letters among teenagers. The plot is solid and the characters are well developed. The author also included an explanation on how it was possible for Mattpaul and Tim to communicate. Mattpaul lives in Lake Gael in Caperton. His world is made up of Village people, who are the wealthy group of people and Mountain people, who are the poorer group of people. The Valley people lives on the shore of Lake Gael, they have beautiful homes, electricity and a specific place for burial. They call the burial place "The House of the Dead". The House of the Dead is divided into two sections one for the criminals, who does not get a head stone and the other section for the non criminals, those who receives a head stone upon burial. The Mountain people, obviously lives in the Mountain. Their homes are build in the mountains, they have no electricity and their dead are buried in caves. The Mountain people do not go to Lake Gael except for fishing.
As a learning experience Mattpaul's class took a trip to where the Mountain people lived. This is where Mattpaul heard of Chihaysu, who spoke about a ruler that lives everywhere. Chihaysu's next speech was going to take place on the shore of Lake Gael and Mattpaul and his best friend Huchfee decided to attend.
Did Mattpaul attend Chihaysu's speech? What did he chose to do with his life after graduating from school? Did he have a successful life. What were the changes in Alex's life. All there questions would be answered after reading The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson.
While reading this book some of the stories that Mattpaul wrote about were awfully familiar with some of stories that I have read in the Bible, such as the story of Zacchaeus. The storyline was easy to follow and understand. The author also catered for those who enjoy looking at pictures while reading because pictures were included.
The editors definitely did a great job, because I can't recall coming across any errors. I am left with no choice but to give this book a perfect rating of 4 out of 4 stars. Reading about how encouraging these teenagers, who are from different world and have never seen each other, were to one another was really heart warming. I can easily recommend this book to any young adult or adult. This book can be used as a start in getting to know about Jesus, just as Mattpaul did. It would also recommend this book as a discussion topic to Christian or non Christians Youth Groups. In my opinion The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson was a well written book.
"The author has done a brilliant job in writing this novel. I loved the way the author described Caperston. This novel teaches us not to judge people. God loves all of us equally. God does not separate people."
Essy Govender, OBC Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, April 16, 2019
The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston is written by Tim Ferguson. The novel has 10 chapters and is 72 pages long. It is the first book in the series. It is a Christian novel. It is a very inspirational novel. It shows us the way to God. The book teaches us how to pray and to have faith in God. Some of us at times lose our faith, this book can help us find the way back.
The novel is set in two different worlds. Caperston is a world similar to Earth but far away. Mattpaul lives on Caperston. He sends out an email. Tim who lives on Earth received it. They began to chat through emails. The people of Caperston are separated into Mountain people and Valley people. The people of Caperston has not heard about God or Jesus. One day a person by the name of Chinhaysu came to their village. He taught the people how to pray. He told them about God.
All the characters in the novel were unique. They had their own personality and they blended well together. Despite that the novel was set in two different universes, they both have similar beliefs. I loved the illustration at the beginning of each chapter. I think it gave the story more depth. The author has used a very simple way of telling the reader's about preaching. The author has done a brilliant job in writing this novel. I loved the way the author described Caperston. This novel teaches us not to judge people. God loves all of us equally. God does not separate people.
The thing I loved most in this novel, is the 10 lessons the author wants us to learn. The author wants us to learn that everything happens as per God's will. I loved that this book teaches us how to pray. The author writes about a lot of miracles. Ferguson wants us to know, that with faith and prayers we can have our overcome a lot of obstacles in our lives. This novel gives us hope.
I recommend this novel to the young and the old. I think people who are struggling with their faith and people who are curious about Christianity will benefit from reading this novel. It is an easy book to read. I enjoyed reading this book. It is a very good book.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This book is "a short read but it's contents are powerful and the message in the book is universal."
Jake Santiago, Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, April 9, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson brings religion and the people of two universes together. To some extent we can even say that the writer has added religion to a piece of sci-fi, none of which go hand in hand. But here in the story, both the concepts are finely blended together. The story has been narrated in the form of conversations between Mattpaul and two other boys from Earth.
Tim, a young boy from Earth receives a text in his website from Mattpaul who is a resident of a different planet, Caperston. Tim is fascinated and curious to know further about Caperston and the two get into a conversation. Tim learns that in Matt's country there are two types of people, the valley people and the mountain people. The valley people are rich and they mistreat the mountain people and also avoid interacting with them.
Matt also tells him about Chihaysu, who is preaching the words of God to the people of Caperston. The preaching of Chihaysu is similar to that of Jesus's. Chihaysu is slowly gaining followers as people are witnessing the power of prayers. Matt himself is a follower of Chihaysu and is preaching the words of God.
The story is really exciting and the readers are reminded about the preaching of God. The writer has tried to show us that the preachings of Jesus have made it's way to other planets too. The writer has taken an innovative approach in narrating the story and that definitely grabs the readers attention.
I'll rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. The book is a short read but it's contents are powerful and the message in the book is universal. The writer has given vivid description of Caperston. It feels as though the writer has actually been there. Even though the preachings are similar to that of Jesus's, you will want to continue reading the book patiently waiting to know the ending, which I shall not reveal.
To fit into the picture of the planet, the writer uses names for the characters which are very unusual. These names were a bit of trouble as I forgot the name of several characters. These book is a perfect book to enlighten children with the preachings of God. The pictures will be very helpful for the children to understand the context. I'll also suggest this book to adults cause the book is really fascinating for adults as well. I didn't find any error in the book..
A book that is "exciting, innovative and really creative as he combines a story, a message, a life and a lesson together..."
Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, March 6, 2019
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is exciting, innovative and really creative as he combines a story, a message, a life and a lesson together to make a book. It is a book I would recommend for teenagers and youths, especially those who are new and seek to grow in their faith as Christians. Also it is a good guide book that can be used for teaching young people due to its interesting construction.
The book is mainly just a conversation between two young men that includes their lives within six months. Mattpaul, the young man who begins the conversation, is from Caperston, an entirely different universe which is parallel to earth. He stumbles upon a message from Tim, who is from earth, on his compol, an electronic device used in Caperston, and begins to interact with him. He then meets Alex, who is also from earth and was going through some challenges, and the two became a source of encouragement to each other. Following the stories and teachings of Chihaysu, Mattpaul was able to see his world in a different light from what it was and was eager to help others find that truth too.
I think each character mentioned in the book played a significant role, from Mattpaul and Alex down to Dawnling. Though Tim was not mentioned much again after the first conversations, his role was completed in bringing Mattpaul and Alex together. Mattpaul can be seen as a character that was enthusiastic to find out the truth about the world, stand for it and share his stories for others to gain from. And Alex, who was presented as one that wants to turn away from what is right because of challenges, still turned out to believe and be encouraged after being exposed to the truth.
I really love the name chosen for this book; The Chest of Visions, it has an interesting ring to it which was what attracted me to it in the first place and reading the book actually showed the name to be the center of the story. As a Christian, I liked the fact that it was written like the events of the bible but not a total copy of it. It is like a representation of the work and walk of Jesus Christ on earth in Caperston.
"I was able to better understand and appreciate the teachings, parables and sacrifices he made."
Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, November 2018
The Chest Of Visions: Secrets Of Caperston by Tim Ferguson is the first book of its series. It combines the theory of biblical creation, the cosmological theory and the big bang theory to tell a wonderful story about another universe known as Caperston and it's relationship to Earth. It is an illustrative book and was set in the universe Caperston.
Certain characters and events in the Bible such as, Jesus walking on water, the story of the good Samaritan and the sermon on the mountain among others, were used in the book but in a more modern way and in a different universe. Personally, I think the author was trying to bring to our imagination how the reception of Jesus would be if his first coming had occurred in this modern technological age.
The book was able to touch certain challenges Christians may be faced with and what should be done during those periods. The bravery, honesty, love and humility of some characters in the book are worthy of emulation. Despite being set in a totally different universe and combining three different theories of creation, the book was quite easy to understand.
Each character in the book were unique in their own way. At the end of the book there are ten lessons written by the author for youths which could be observed individually or as a group.
My best part of the book is the ability of the author to make Jesus more relatable in the person of Chihaysu. This way, I was able to better understand and appreciate the teachings, parables and sacrifices he made. I also appreciated the explanation given concerning the death of Kevin mostly because I've also lost a friend and I found comfort from the book. I'm really looking forward to the second book in the series.
I observed no errors while reading the book. I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars and recommend it to both children and adults because the book made the Bible story of Jesus simpler and clearer and there is a lot to be learned from the book as a growing child and as an adult.
"The story was done well and you really fall in love with the characters. You stay in the story and want to know more. It is also a great story for youth to hear about God and to think about what God's role is"
Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, November 2018
The Chest of Vision by Tim Ferguson is about another world, Caperston, in a parallel universe to earth. The story follows a youth named Mattpaul from Caperston who communicates with people from earth with a device called a compol. He tells his story of hearing about God for the first time from a man named Chihaysu. Mattpaul finds Chihaysu interesting and goes to hear him speak of God more and more. Mattpaul soon becomes one of Chuhaysu's followers and spreads the word of God. At the same time, it shows how Mattpaul is handling all of the new information as a youth and how life goes for him. Mattpaul makes a friend from earth named Alex. Alex is going through a tough time and what Mattpaul writes really helps him out.
This story was done very well. It was written in letter/email format and I think it worked well. You got to see what was going on in Mattpaul and Alex's life. I felt for these characters. I could picture them and what they were going through. I liked how Mattpaul is young and you see how he is dealing with all the new changes. So many changes come about and you see him make decisions and what he is feeling. You also see what someone on earth is going through. You see how they are different and how they are the same. You see the struggles the characters have to face and you feel for them.I
also loved how the story showed what it would be like if a world had never known God. Caperston is just learning about God and what he is like. You see how different people take this news. This is a good story to think about and learn from. At the end, there are some lessons to think about and I think this is a great way to share God with youth.T
he only thing I wanted more of was a little more sci-fi. The parts that were there were so good but in Caperston I felt like there should have been more devices and things. I wanted to see a world that was far more advanced and see how that kind of world acted with finding out about God.
I rate this book a 4 out of 4 stars. This was a great book overall. The story was done well and you really fall in love with the characters. You stay in the story and want to know more. It is also a great story for youth to hear about God and to think about what God's role is.
A book that "makes you think differently about how you have been perceiving things."
Onlinebookclub Review - The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston, October 2018
The Chest of Visions by Tim Ferguson is an amazing book .This book consists of an exchange of conversation between Mattpaul and people on the earth. Mattpaul is from another planet and has no idea about God or the Bible. His country has two major categories of people: Mountain People and Valley People. Mattpaul belongs to the Valley People. He communicates with people on the earth and asks them about God.
The incident that provoked Mattpaul to ponder upon such issues was his meeting with Chihaysu. Chihaysu is a very important character of the book. Chihaysu is involved in spreading the teachings of Christianity and invites people to believe in God. This is the purpose of his visit to Lake Gael. He gives an explanatory account of the Bible and Jesus. Moreover, he gives concrete examples to support his stance.
The teachings of Chihaysu have created a dilemma for Mattpaul. He is unable to decide whether to believe Chihaysu or to neglect him. Hence, he sends messages to people on the earth and asks them the legitimacy of the teachings of Chihaysu. Consequently, he receives messages from the earth. People tell him the basic things about God and Jesus. Similarly, they also inform him about their own personal experiences.
Mattpaul discusses various aspects with the people from the Earth. Tim and Alex are the one who appear the most. Mattpaul informs them about the questions which he asks from Chihaysu and the answers given by Chihaysu.
The thing that I liked the most about this book was that the lessons which the author wants us to learn are very important. The author wants us to realize that nothing happens randomly. Everything is pre-destined and there is a reason for everything that occurs. The incident of Kevin's death made me very emotional but the author explains the reason for his death in a very appropriate method.I am not going to tell you whether Mattpaul believed in the teachings of Chihaysu or not. I want you to find that on your own.
I simply loved the organization of the book. It had proper headings and the fact that each page had few words was very comforting for the eyes. Moreover, it had many pictures in it which was made the written content even more interesting. I loved all the sketches and I spent a great time evaluating them. In addition, the book is only 72 pages long. Hence you can finish it in just one sitting. I like such books.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. The reason for this rating is that the impact that this book leaves upon you is not a usual one. It makes you think differently about how you have been perceiving things.
This book is not oriented towards any age group. Everybody can read it and benefit from it. The smooth flow of text, interesting visuals, and the message oriented nature of the book makes it worth reading.
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The Chest of Visions
"Engaging, exciting ... easy-to-read"
The Chest of Visions, takes us to a parallel universe, similar yet different from our own world.
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For more reviews and purchase information click ... Reviews Chest of Visions For updated and less expensive, self published book, click: The Chest of Visions Updated ... This version does not yet have a review. Will you be the first to do so?
For more reviews and purchase information click ... Reviews Chest of Visions
For updated and less expensive, self published book, click: The Chest of Visions Updated ... This version does not yet have a review. Will you be the first to do so?
"The Chest of Visions" is crafted as a totally new concept for involving today's youth in Bible study. Borrowing from the contemporary popularity of Science Fiction and Fantasy fiction novels, comics and movies, the author has devised a correspondence across parallel universes between several teen-aged individuals on two different planets in two different universes.If read in its entirety, and considered prayerfully, "Chest of Visions" should be acknowledged as a significant step forward in Youth Group Study Guides"
Readers Favorite review of The Chest of Visions,                       3rd Place Winner
Readers Favorite "Christian Fantasy Sci-Fi Contest , 2013.
Review by Daniel Mosley, age 16: "I loved this book. It is inspiring and interesting ..."
Review by Melissa Jagel: "Engaging, exciting, entertaining, and easy-to-read! Ferguson's super-cool little book, "The Chest of Visions," brilliantly captures the essence of the Gospel message "
Review by Keila Ochoa Harris, Mexican christian fiction author: "Through a fast paced story we learn about Mattpaul and his adventure in Caperston... Mattpaul had a decision to make. He had to choose between following Chihaysu or staying as he was."
Marie Hough Review: "The Chest of Visions, Secrets of Caperston is a must read for
everyone... I began reading it with my ten year old grandson one day. When I came back one week later he had finished the book on his own and said he cannot wait to read the sequel.This is one of a few books that I will enjoy rereading
Marie Hough Review: "The Chest of Visions, Secrets of Caperston is a must read for everyone... I began reading it with my ten year old grandson one day. When I came back one week later he had finished the book on his own and said he cannot wait to read the sequel.This is one of a few books that I will enjoy rereading numerous times."
Elizabeth Marie review: "In this book we meet youth from two different worlds...Once I opened this book, I couldn't set it down ... I love this book! I think it's perfect for a youth group read and study."
Richard Blake review: "Tim Ferguson skillfully combines his creative imagination, and nearly twenty of experience in youth ministry into a story of hopefulness, fearlessness, and intrigue. "
Shirley Johnson review: "I read this book with a thirteen year old girl and once we were finished I asked her how she felt about our experience. She said it definitely made her think about many things in her own life and in her walk with God."
Ann B. Of Readers Favorites Review: "This story was written for young adults; however, I enjoyed it very much. Tim Ferguson is very creative and has found a wonderful way to reach youth."
Paul H. review: "It helps us think about spiritual matters in a most entertaining way."
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New Book Reviews from Goodreads
Aug 08, 2013 ...Sandra Stiles rated it 5 of 5 stars
I think every youth group should read this book. This makes us take a look at why bad things like death happen. It makes us look deeply at our own faith. Have we pulled away from God? Are we doing enough to reach others for the Lord? This book is the one you need to read with your teen to open those conversations. One thing I kept thinking about when we looked at the world where they had no religion was how many nations in our own world have never heard of our God. How do they react when we introduce them to him. I am surprised each year when I give my autobiography to my students and I discuss my religious beliefs, the number of students who have never seen and some of them never heard of the Bible or Jesus. This is a book that I have on my shelves at school. It has wonderful pictures in it which will reach that kid who really enjoys the more graphic type novel. It is a way to plant the seeds of Christianity. I definitely recommend this book to all grandparents, parents, teens and youth groups.
Lee Ashford for Readers' Favorite rated it 5 of 5 stars
"The Chest of Visions: Secrets of Caperston" by Tim Ferguson is a well-reasoned, well-written, and intelligently conceived allegory for use as a Christian Youth Group Study Guide. It is bound to be considered quite "awesome" by the Youth Groups which use it, just as it is bound to be considered controversial or even blasphemous by older generations, which often comprise church leadership.
However, if it is recognized for what it is - an allegory - it should be seen as no more controversial than "Pilgrim's Progress", which no doubt faced a lot of opposition when it was first released. It should also be conceded that ANYTHING which helps youth understand the Gospel better is a good tool to be used for that purpose.
"The Chest of Visions" is crafted as a totally new concept for involving today's youth in Bible study. Borrowing from the contemporary popularity of Science Fiction and Fantasy fiction novels, comics and movies, the author has devised a correspondence across parallel universes between several teen-aged individuals on two different planets in two different universes.
The correspondences are prompted by the appearance on the planet Caperston of what amounts to a missionary, spreading the Gospel message of Jesus Christ. At first glance, one might assume the missionary is intended to imply an appearance of Jesus on another planet, by which He intends to extend salvation to the residents thereof. That is NOT the case, however. The missionary, Chi-hay-su, repeats a number of Jesus' sermons, and selects a number of "followers" who seem as if they are meant to fill the role of the Apostles, but in reality Chi-hay-su has HEARD the Gospel himself, believed it, and is doing what he believes is the most efficient approach to reach his entire planet FOR GOD.
If read in its entirety, and considered prayerfully, "Chest of Visions" should be acknowledged as a significant step forward in Youth Group Study Guides. It has my stamp of approval, for whatever that's worth.