I told you it would be interesting!
The CSFF Tour is wrapping up its feature of The Resurrection, the debut novel by Mike Duran. There's a lot of interesting opinions out there. The book was well-received by most, but there were a few who thought it didn't meet its potential. Becky Miller keeps track of all the posts, and Mike has highlighted a few posts that stood out to him. You can find my interview with Mike under part 1 and part 2. Thanks Mike for taking your time with me and my questions! Although...I never did see an answer to question 8...
I reviewed the book a couple weeks ago, getting ahead of myself. Still, I wanted to comment on some things that came out from the tour.
1. It's not horror.
For those who can't handle Stephen King and Dean Koontz, don't fear. The Resurrection is a very suspenseful novel. You may be on the edge of your seat. But it doesn't cross over into the horror category IMO. But be warned, Mike's next book may be treading into that territory, from what I've heard.
2. There's a lot to ponder.
I think a book that stands out not only entertains, but makes the reader think. Several people on the tour have noted this about The Resurrection. The part that has amazed me is the variety of themes and ideas people have gotten from it. I saw the themes of faith, modern philosophy vs. the gospel, and the real continuing battle between good and evil in the book. A lot of other thoughts were pulled from it as well. For this Mike, you should be proud.
3. People are interested by something other than a "standard" literary evangelical Christianity.
In CBA there seems to be a general feel for a church. A church in these books may be modern or traditional, but seem pretty middle of the road. Actually, Canyon Springs Community Church in this book is as well. The fact that there's a resurrection, a miracle, sets the book apart. There is an interesting discussion at Becky's blog regarding the gifts of the Spirit that is encouraging to me. It would be nice to see a little more of the wide variety of Christian expression in CBA novels. If the church is made of "every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb," (Rev 7:9), then we should see God's vast character highlighted in Christian fiction, right?
4. Spiritual warfare = Frank Peretti.
I didn't think The Resurrection aped Mr. Peretti too much, but a lot of people made that connection. His Darkness novels are still standouts in my mind for Christian fiction, but just because a novel touches on spiritual warfare themes, it doesn't make it a Peretti knock-off. Not knocking those who see that. Not knocking at all really...moving along....
5. Readership for CBA novels is evolving.
I thought there would be a little MORE controversy over The Resurrection, since it features miracles, ghosts with catchy monikers, and the spiritual warfare angle. Mike likes to provoke thought at his blog Decompose, so I teased about controversy with this tour. However, the participants didn't fuss over this book at all. There were honest critiques and discussion over whether plot points (like the ghost) worked. But no one quit the CSFF over a lack of doctrinal purity (this has happened before, I'm not kidding). We have a lot of new folks lately and I really love CSFF Tour time because of the thoughtful exploration of the books we feature.
6. You need to buy The Resurrection.
Enough of sitting in front of your computer and reading this! Go here, order the book, and you'll have a great way to pass the time when (if, in Idaho) spring arrives. Thanks for stopping by!