Friday, July 11, 2008

cover to cover

"...if anything matters then everything matters. Because you are important, everything you do is important. Every time you forgive, the universe changes; every time you reach out and touch a heart or a life, the world changes; with every kindness and service, seen or unseen, (God's) purposes are accomplished and nothing will ever be the same." from The Shack

I can't remember the last time I read a book cover to cover in a single day, but that is exactly what I did today. The book? The Shack.

While I had heard popular buzz about it around the internet and seen it in a couple of bookstores, I found myself steering clear of it for some reason. (I like to do things my way, don't ya know?) Speaking yesterday with a friend, she mentioned how she has "been off of Christian fiction" for quite some time. I agreed. Oddly, it did not dawn on me that sitting under the seat of my scooter was this book which I had just purchased at the local book store. Hmmm.

And so today I opened up the pages around 9:00 a.m. and finished it off sometime around 5 (with a few minor diversions throughout the day). It will take me awhile to process and possibly another read, but I found it to be a very compelling story and the depictions of the Trinity resonated deeply with me. My reading recommendation: Two thumbs up!!!

I am a little brain dead right now, so there will be no book review today. However, I am curious to know whether you have read the book, heard of it, steered clear or now recommend it to all of your friends. I would love to hear what you have to say once you do read it...cause I know you want to now . Cheers!

9 comments:

Sue said...

I have read this book about 10 times, haha :) I think steering clear of the buzz is SUCH a good thing. Isn't it funny how the buzz of something distorts things? I'm glad this resonated. I too love the relationship depiction of the Trinity, of their closeness. Wonderful.

I loved it, but I'm a bit biased, I guess (and I didn't love the story so much as a literary story, as I just love the contents. In fact, I'm glad the prose is the way it is. Somtimes I think a high tome literary masterpiece would have detracted from the relationship depicted.

In one day - no wonder you're brain dead :)

H.M. said...

Well, I probably would be better advised to keep my cynic's two cents to myself, but since you asked, and I guess I feel like "wading in" this evening....

I am a "steer clear" on this one, as with all popular "Christian" fiction (So what is it that makes a novel specifically "Christian"? Does The Brothers Karamazov--or any other Dostoevsky for that matter--qualify? I guess I have a little problem with the definition of the genre to begin with. It usually means very "Evangelically" oriented fiction....)

I'm almost certain that I'll continue to steer clear. I've heard and read all the buzz and had friends tell all about this book (and how great it was) and I don't know that it would have anything to offer me. For starters, I've ceased to believe in a "trinity" so....

I guess I'll stick with the "non-Christian" (if that's what it is) fiction....

My apologies if I rained on any parades.

Fond thoughts of you and Bill always.
H.M.

lucy said...

h.m.--i might be better advised to not respond here either, but what the heck i feel like wading in too :-)

i, too, wonder what the heck does "Christian" literature/fiction/whatever mean anyway? i guess i would need to understand your definition of "evangelical" to adequately respond, but according to my definition, i did not find this book to fall into that category (i.e. evangelical).

and i was quite intrigued by your statement "I don't know that it would have anything to offer me." maybe it would. maybe it wouldn't. i guess you'd have to read it to know for certain, oh cynical one :-)

i continue to challenge my own understanding and views of the trinity myself. and again, i would need to know your definition of "trinity" to be able to answer whether or not i believe in what you are disbelieving in. there were some interesting perspectives and outlooks in this reading that for me represented a noteworthy bridge between the "all-knowing" religion of my past and the decision to throw the baby out with the bath water, so-to-speak.

and finally--what is with the apologies?!??!?!??!? unless you are speaking here in a mean spirit (& i don't believe that for one second) the apologies are absolutely unnecessary.

always happy to hear what you have to say. wishing you well during your time off!

lucy said...

sue--i would love to hear more about what you liked...qualifying it for a 10x read!

i also may have overstepped my bounds (but hey it's my blog) h.m. may have been apologizing to you. oops. sorry :-)

dirtydishes said...

I'm gonna check it out

SUNRISE SISTER said...

I just heard it recommended last week and when I heard that the author cleverly cast God as a black woman, I thought I know they've taken a stupid joke and made it into a movie, I mean a book....but now that Lucy says it's worth a ponder I may pick it up at Powell's on the way to Honolulu....anything is good on the beach:)

Aloha!xoxoxox

Kel said...

ah yes, ignored the hype too, but then an aussie distributor set up shop, so I got a copy

reluctantly, cos i'm not a big fan of murder, thriller, scary books, cos I'm too sensitive a soul

but the shack puts into words what is often hard to verbalise - so in that sense i think it's well done

personifying the trinity like that resonated for me and when i finished the book, part of me wished I could spend a weekend at the shack too - regain a sense of real connection to spiritual ethereal beings that often seem so removed from every day life

you did well reading it in one day, it took me awhile, and processing of it took longer, just steeping in the story and slowly absorbing some of its wisdom and truth

lucy said...

dirtydishes & SS--i look forward to hearing your reviews upon completion :-)

kel--it's good to hear your voice! thanks for adding your viewpoint to this discussion. "the hype" is an interesting thing, isn't it? and i am always curious about what makes we that push back finally turn the corner.

Sue said...

Lucy, I actually read it in manuscript format when Paul was asking for people to give their opinions. so at that stage I read it through about 5 or 6 times, and then since it's been printed I've read it another 4 :)

It's not the story itself but the characters that get me in, the love going on between the trinity, the things that Paul puts in their mouth to say. I can't think of anything offhand because my brain isn't working, but yeah. I think I loved Sarayu the most :)