WHY WE CARE


Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."

YOUR STORIES


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"

SUPPORT THE WORK OF PLUGGED IN

Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Book Review

Katy's New World by Kim Vogel Sawyer has been reviewed by Focus on the Family’s marriage and parenting magazine. It is the first book in the "Katy Lambright" series.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Katy Lambright receives permission from the deacons of her Mennonite sect to depart from tradition and attend a nearby public high school. Katy becomes friends with a girl named Shelby, and although Katy considers Shelby and her family to be worldly, she quickly discovers that their religious beliefs are quite similar to her own. Katy's closest Mennonite friend, Annika, is jealous of Katy's relationship with Shelby. Others in the Mennonite community begin to question Katy's dedication to their faith because she spends more time with people outside of their sect than she does with people within it.

Katy struggles to find a sense of belonging and wonders if she is compromising her beliefs by attending high school. Katy's grandmother Ruthie encourages Katy to follow the Lord's leading and to choose wisely. But when Jewel, a foster teen staying with Shelby's family, asks Katy to skip school with her, Katy agrees to ditch it with Jewel out of curiosity. Because of this, Katy's father is worried that he won't be able to trust Katy, but Katy proves to him that she has learned from her mistake. As time goes on, Katy becomes more comfortable with showing her faith and her convictions to both those within and outside of the Mennonite sect.

Christian Beliefs

Katy belongs to a conservative Mennonite sect. Her family's faith in God is an obvious part of their daily lives, often shown through times of prayer and devotions, and Katy strives to maintain her close walk with the Lord. Shelby's father, Rev. Nuss, is a Southern Baptist minister, and he expects his children to follow the teachings of Scripture. Shelby participates in a Bible study held at the high school, and Katy's father eventually gives Katy permission to join this group.

Other Belief Systems

None

Authority Roles

Katy's father, Samuel, is a single dad, and he sometimes struggles with knowing how to interact with his daughter. While Katy finds him overprotective at times, he does his best to ensure her well-being, and he hopes to impart an unshakable faith in God to her. At the same time, he doesn't allow his own fears about things outside of his control to keep Katy from pursuing her desire to further her education.

Samuel's parents, Ben and Ruthie, are loving and involved grandparents to Katy. Katy feels comfortable going to Ruthie with her concerns, and both Ben and Ruthie seek to support Katy with their prayers.

Ms. Hamilton, Jewel's mother, is permissive, allowing her daughter to make her own choices without guidance or direction.

Profanity/Violence

None

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

At a corn-shucking party, Caleb, a Mennonite boy, is given an ear of red corn, which entitles him to kiss the girl of his choice. Caleb approaches Katy, but she runs away before he can kiss her.

Ms. Hamilton's live-in boyfriend, Hugo, is described as having a problem with keeping his hands to himself, and the family's social worker will not let Jewel return home until Hugo is gone.

Discussion Topics

Get free discussion questions for this book and others, at FocusOnTheFamily.com/discuss-books.

Additional Comments/Notes

You can request a review of a title you can't find at reviewrequests@family.org.

Book reviews cover the content, themes and worldviews of fiction books, not their literary merit, and equip parents to decide whether a book is appropriate for their children. The inclusion of a book's review does not constitute an endorsement by Focus on the Family.

Episode Reviews

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!