At last I have internet again and am able to write this from our new home. It feels good to be in and mostly settled. There are still a few things to be done, but at least most of the boxes are unpacked. Today I had the chance to finish reading Heaven and the Afterlife by James L. Garlow and Keith Wall. I know I know…it sounds preachy, but really it’s not “preachy.” I posted before about receiving this book via LibraryThing. If you’d like to receive books before they’re published and review them on their site, or your blog you should check out their Early Reviewers Group.
I was really pleasantly surprised by this book. I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve read books in this category before that were blatantly misdirecting, mushy, glossy, crowd pleasers. This book is not that. So in fact, I wouldn’t even put it in the same category as those others. Heaven and the Afterlife is a well researched piece of work. (Footnotes actually appear on the page, not at the back of the book!) The author does a really nice job of looking at and comparing different theologies, philosophies, and ways of thinking, while at the same time presenting his own beliefs.
A variety of subjects are covered such as: near death experiences, heaven, hell, ghosts, reincarnation, purgatory, etc. The chapters are informative and thought provoking. Some sections are frightening, but honesty is best. Even if this is not your typical choice for a read, it really is worth giving a shot. Everyone asks questions about these things and Garlow’s answers are straight forward.
The one thing that I would change, is that on the back cover it reads, “Bestselling Author Demystifies the Afterlife.” The word “Demystifies” is a little misleading. There is nothing mystical about this book.
I’m quite firm in my faith and this book got me thinking even more on some matters involving what I believe. It didn’t change what I believe, but simply got me thinking about some issues that are hard to think about, but are worth every bit of that perplexion. The book is due out July 1,2009.