Review: A Tale of Two Cities

by Oct 4, 2011Books, Uncategorized0 comments

A Tale of Two Cities
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dickens’ deep insight in this book is not what I would call “Christian” (though it is consistent with Christianity) but “human.” He sees quite clearly what anyone with eyes should be able to see, whether they have the Bible or not: that sin sometimes twists its victims into victimizers, that vengeance sometimes takes on a momentum carrying it far beyond justice.

But there was one truly Christian insight in the book, the believable (I felt) self-sacrifice of one character for another. The final portion of the book compares that sacrifice elegantly to that of Christ, a fitting picture.

Dickens, of course, also has a legendary eye for characterization that creates moments of real wit. But this book isn’t very funny. It’s serious, even scary. It puts you face to face with the terrible two-way injustices carried out every day “under the sun.” I hope that Dickens did realize that Christ’s self-sacrifice and resurrection provide the only hope for resolving humanity’s capacity for oppression and self-immolating revenge.

View all my reviews

Read MoreĀ 

Review: Think Again by Stanley Fish

Think Again: Contrarian Reflections on Life, Culture, Politics, Religion, Law, and Education by Stanley FishMy rating: 5 of 5 stars I have read multiple Stanley Fish books; I read quite a number of these columns when they were originally published in the New York...

Review: Why I Preach from the Received Text

Review: Why I Preach from the Received Text

Why I Preach from the Received Text is an anthology of personal testimonies more than it is a collection of careful arguments. It is not intended to be academic, and I see nothing necessarily wrong with that. But it does make countless properly academic claims, and...

Review: The Power Broker, by Robert Caro

Review: The Power Broker, by Robert Caro

The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York by Robert A. Caro My rating: 5 of 5 stars Robert Caro is fascinated by power. He has given his life to exploring how it is gained and kept. And in Robert Moses, the subject of this epic book, power looks like the...

Review: Finding the Right Hills to Die On by Gavin Ortlund

Review: Finding the Right Hills to Die On by Gavin Ortlund

Finding the Right Hills to Die On: The Case for Theological Triage by Gavin Ortlund My rating: 4 of 5 stars Gracious, clear, accessible. Extremely well done. I nearly docked him a star for being ever-so-slightly in a different place than I am on creationism (though I...

Leave a comment.

0 Comments

Leave a Reply