RUMORS OF ANOTHER WORLD: What on Earth Are We Missing?

Philip Yancey, Author . Zondervan $22.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-310-25217-7

In a work that is startling and original, Yancey (What's So Amazing About Grace?; The Jesus I Never Knew) writes for people on the "borderlands" of Christian faith: those who may have been scarred by bad church experiences, or those who simply have more doubts and questions than they have faith. Most people, he says, perceive "rumors of another world" while inhabiting this one; they long for something more, and yearn for belief in God's transcendence. We substitute other things for God in order to fill this void. (In a chapter that by itself is worth the price of admission, Yancey claims that our culture's fascination with sex stems from the fact that sex is one of the only transcendent, mysterious experiences remaining in the contemporary West.) The quality of Yancey's writing—and his thinking—are simply superb. He is fond of modern literary giants like Simone Weil, Virginia Woolf and Evelyn Waugh and is apt to defer to the insights of 20th-century poets such as T.S. Eliot and W.H. Auden. He also draws from his understanding of God-in-nature (shades of Annie Dillard here) and from his travels all over the world, using Tasmanian sheep to illustrate a point about human freedom and Costa Rican leatherback turtles to demonstrate "the mixed messages in nature." One particularly powerful chapter discusses the thorny—and unpopular—topics of guilt and repentance. Yancey, one of the Christian market's best writers, shows a marvelous ability to speak to the world outside that market. (Sept. 2)

Forecast:To promote this book, Yancey will do a 12-city national tour, the first-ever book tour for this author, who in the last 25 years has sold more than seven million books. He will also be the featured speaker for a live broadcast on September 14 on the Church Communication Network, with 1,500 subscribing churches.

Reviewed on: 08/04/2003
Release date: 08/01/2003
Genre: Nonfiction
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