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."


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!"


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

This psychological thriller is the first book in the "Conspiracy 365" series by Gabrielle Craig Lord. Published in Australia, the series is distributed in the U.S. by Usborne Books and Kane Miller, a division of EDC Publishing. January: Conspiracy 365 is written for kids ages 9 and older. The age range reflects readability and not necessarily content appropriateness.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Fifteen-year-old Callum Ormond misses his father, who died of a mysterious disease nine months earlier. On New Year's Eve, a crazy-looking man rushes toward Cal in the street. He tells Cal that "they" killed his father and will kill Cal, too, if he doesn't hide for the next 365 days. The man mentions something called "The Ormond Singularity" just before two men cart him off in an ambulance.

Confused, Cal joins Mum, his little sister, Gabbi, and his uncle, Rafe (dad's identical twin), to watch fireworks. Later, he and Rafe are on the family's boat, and Cal suggests they should return to shore because of an impending squall. Rafe ignores Cal's warnings, and the two are caught in a storm. Rafe is thrown from the boat, later washing up on the shore alive, and Cal battles sharks before being rescued by helicopter.

Cal begins to wonder about The Ormond Singularity. He recalls his father's last photojournalist job: His dad had gone to Ireland to film a documentary about Australian families with an Irish history. He'd written to Cal that he'd discovered a significant secret about the Ormond family, but Cal shouldn't mention it to anyone. The letter included a drawing of an angel in World War I combat gear with wings and a flaming sword. His dad promised further explanation later.

On Jan. 2, Cal and his family find their house ransacked. An empty spot in a jewelry box in Cal's father's suitcase indicates the intruders stole something. A few days later, an envelope arrives for Cal. Rafe takes it, insisting it has to do with the Dad's estate, which he's managing. Cal knows Rafe is lying and that the envelope includes secrets about The Ormond Singularity. He breaks into Rafe's house, finds the envelope and learns from a doctor's letter that his dad's sketches were sent as a message to Cal. The drawings he mentions are missing.

Cal receives a call from a woman claiming to be a nurse who cared for his dad before he died. She says she has confidential information for Cal. When Cal goes to meet her, he is captured and questioned by thugs who want to know about The Ormond Singularity. He escapes through a skylight and returns home to find that someone has drained the money from his family's bank account. More suspicious of Rafe than ever, Cal takes his friend Boges to the Ormond family mausoleum. Guards chase them away.

Back at home, Cal finds his house has been invaded, again. Rafe is bleeding on the floor, and Gabbi isn't breathing. Once Cal has done CPR on her and is sure Gabbi will live, he hears people coming and escapes.

Later, he sees his picture on a TV screen in a hotel lobby and discovers police suspect he attacked Rafe and Gabbi. He returns to the mausoleum and finally finds more of his father's pictures (hidden by Rafe).

Realizing he can't return home, he finds an abandoned house in which to hide. Boges brings him food and information. He spends his days pouring over his dad's cryptic pictures, trying to discover their secrets. Cal makes contact with his mother but is unable to convince her of his innocence.

Cal is captured a second time by a different set of thugs. When he cannot give them the information they want, they put him in a tank which begins filling with oil. He's about to drown as the book ends.

January is the first book in a series of 12 in which Cal attempts to stay alive while solving the mystery of The Ormond Singularity.

Christian Beliefs

Cal offers up a few silent prayers when he's in danger. Some of the pictures drawn by Cal's dad include an angel in a World War I uniform.

Other Belief Systems

Gabbi gives Cal a Celtic ring their dad gave her. She says it will keep him safe. Cal says his dad didn't go to church much. He thought life was his religion, tried to live with gratitude in good and bad times and thought people could expand their minds in the same way that the universe was expanding. Rafe suggests that between the sharks attacking Cal and him getting washed out to sea, they've had some bad luck. Cal wonders if there was a sixth sense between twin brothers Dad and Rafe.

Authority Roles

Cal recalls that his dad was big on family and wanted to keep it together at all costs. Rafe poses as a concerned family member, helping Mum with the details of Dad's estate. He questions Cal about Dad's work, lies to gain information and engages in other suspicious behavior. Mum, distraught by the loss of her husband, relies heavily on Rafe's help with the estate. She trusts what he does over her own children's ideas and opinions.


The word crap appears twice. Cal is pursued by sharks. He finds his uncle and sister badly injured in their home. Neither scene is graphic.



Discussion Topics

If your children have read this book or someone has read it to them, consider these discussion topics:

  • How is Rafe's behavior deceitful?
  • What does Cal lie about?
  • Is his lying necessary for his survival? Explain your answer.
  • Why does Mum trust Rafe better than her own son?
  • What does the Bible say about lying?

  • What are your theories about The Ormond Singularity?

  • What message might the angel picture represent?

  • If you were in Cal's place, where would you go for help and advice?

Additional Comments/Notes

Smoking: Rafe smokes cigars.

Lying: Cal lies to keep his family's secrets from the bad guys. Rafe lies in an effort to obtain family secrets.

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

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

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range

9 and up


Gabrielle Lord






Record Label



Published in Australia, the series is distributed in the U.S. by Usborne Books and Kane Miller, a division of EDC Publishing


On Video

Year Published




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!