Friday, October 11, 2013

Book Review: The Church Builder by A. L. Shields

I got this book through and while this publisher is usually handling books with a religious angle, I have gotten some really good books for review. This book was described as the first book in a "thrilling new series about a secret war between the forces of faith and those who would destroy it." So I expected a religious angle, but more along the lines of the Ken Follett books, such as Pillars of the Earth. Ken Follet also has religious themes in his book, after all Pillars of the Earth is all about building a cathedral.
This book is definitely more explicit in terms of the religious tones than the books by Ken Follett, but it is still enjoyable and certainly does not feel like reading an updated version of the bible.

The book starts off with Bethany Barclay, a lawyer, trying to figure out what happened to Annabelle. Annabelle was Bethany's best friend and was murdered by unknown forces; the same forces that Bethany will have to deal with throughout the remainder of the book. As Bethany comes closer to determining what really led to Annabelle's death, she also becomes involved in the same struggle that caused her friend's death. What Bethany is up against is the century old battle between two organizations. The Garden is a group of individuals led by the Builder that are intent on protecting the church and religious freedom. On the other hand, the Wilderness are a group equally determined to destroy all religious faith. Bethany becomes involved in the ongoing fight between these groups and in the process assesses her own belief and character.

This book is definitely entertaining and does not have such strong religious overtones that it at any time appears to preach to the reader. It is well written and combines faith and action in a book that can be described as page-turner. That being said, the religious angle and the role of faith in a person's life is definitely more pronounced in these books that in other books that deal with religious struggles. So be ready to maybe be enticed to examine your own faith while reading the book. I enjoyed the book and found it entertaining.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the book through in exchange for an honest review. The post is reflecting solely my opinion and has not been influenced by booksneeze or any third party.

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