Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Holiday Reading...

It was great to relax last week in Portugal - Algarve has to be one of most stunning coastlines I've been to and to be able to sit back and enjoy it in the sun was a boon! I thought I'd catch up on some novels while away.

Young, W. (2007). The Shack. Grand Rapids: Windblown Media

The Shack I read with the warning that I would hate it! Certainly the disclaimer that if I didn't enjoy the book it was not meant for me was a handy loophole. I think it would only be fair to say I would imagine that there would be others that would benefit from this book more than me!! Trying not to be bruisingly cynical and without wanting to spoil the plot, I struggled with the over personification of the Trinity, particular moments of intimacy, knowing looks and winks in the community of God made me gag. The overplay of the obvious left me groaning with too many 'oh really moments...!'

Put that aside and the ridiculous depiction of God the Father as a pastry baking 'mamma two shoes' reminiscent of Tom and Jerry - there was some thought provoking material. It is worth putting aside that which was puerile in order to engage with a level of thought that probably needs a revisit, the nature of what is evil; the distinction of relationship based on expectancy rather that expectation; living within the full capacity of humanity - I just wish it hadn't taken a friendly Jay to fly in through the window as God finished off her baking to make the point!!

A modern day Pilgrim's Progress was a generous endorsement by Eugene Peterson. My tip skirt over the silliness and slow down on some of the more thoughtful stuff . Try and forget the brilliance of the marketing that has placed this book in the hands of so many people!! Don't forget that this book has helped many many people engage with God at a level kept from them because of circumstances only known to them!

Rice, A. (2008). Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana. New York: Knopf

I thoroughly enjoyed Anne Rice's reading between the lines with the second of her 'Christ the Lord' trilogy. It takes some getting used to reading the narrative as Jesus in the first person but the insights make it worth it. The temptations narrative - in particular - will be worth revisiting.

Grisham, J. (1998). The Street Lawyer. New York: Dell Publishing

I'm beginning to enjoy a Grisham novel now and then and 'The Street Lawyer' was well worth borrowing from my mum! It reminded me of Faith House. A really good page turner!

1 comment:

Phil said...

I am reading "The Shack" at the moment. You are very kind in your review of it. Though I agree the subject matter is worth engaging I wish it had been written by someone who could write a good story. I get so tired of "Christian" books, music and plays being so glaringly obvious. I think I would enjoy the book if the main character didn't even believe in God.
Credit to the author though for using the words "damn" and "pissed off" and not getting crucified by the religious right. Maybe one day we will see a "Christian" novel with real grown up words in it.