Author: Phillip Gulley
Info: Copyright 2004: Waterville, ME: Thorndike Press.
Where acquired: Library check out.
Rating (on a scale of 1-4 stars): ✮
What it's about: Sam Gardener is a Quaker Pastor who deals with the trials and tribulations of shepherding a difficult flock. His wife and children are his saving graces, and he tries to take on each challenge with humor and kindness.
What I Liked:
- The book did have a few funny lines.
- As far as grammar and mechanics goes, it was well written.
- I had no idea this book was part of a series. I'm used to reintroductions to characters, or at least a series name and number on the cover somewhere.
- The characters in this book are a mishmash of pure evil. They are mere churchgoers who show no indication of a relationship with Christ, or that they even want one. They spend all of their time being right instead of righteous. However, the Pastor is no hero; he's a limp wristed, people pleasing cynic who seems to only be a Pastor for a steady paying job, rather than an enjoyable calling from God he blessedly gets well paid for.
- For this to be Christian novel, it is absolutely faithless. At one point, Pastor Sam angrily asks his hypocritical, backbiting congregation, "What does this have to do with Jesus?!" However, I don't think he knows either. Jesus doesn't seem to be foremost on anyone's mind, including the Pastor.
- Most of the humor came across as a slap in the face of bitter cynicism.
- The angry tension throughout the novel was left unresolved. Sorry, but no book I'm supposed to read for enjoyment should leave me with an angry case of heartburn.