Read Would You Do What They Did? - Great Christian Leaders from Our Past by William Dean Hamilton Free Online
Book Title: Would You Do What They Did? - Great Christian Leaders from Our Past|
The author of the book: William Dean Hamilton
ISBN 13: 9781936746644
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 518 KB
Edition: Crosslink Publishing
Date of issue: September 28th 2013
Read full description of the books Would You Do What They Did? - Great Christian Leaders from Our Past:Never judge a book by its cover. Would You Do What They Did?: Great Christian Leaders from Our Past has a pretty decent cover. Unfortunately, the content doesn’t live up to a promising first impression.
I wasn’t far into the book – only the introduction, in fact – when I began to worry. While I admired the author’s purpose in writing it – “to make the stories readable, and the characters come alive” and to help readers “see Christ in [a] diverse array of people” – I took issue with a couple of his statements. One, he has “very serious doubts about anything miraculous outside of [the Bible]”. How can this be if Jesus (God) is the same today as He was yesterday and as He will be forever (Hebrews 13:8)? Two, Hamilton “tried to write the truth” but “decide[d] what to include based on what [he]…decided the truth to be.” What? He decided what the truth was? Isn’t the truth the truth? Finally, his comment that he “tried to include the most famous Christians, but… [ran] out of room in [his] book is humorous. He writes about four well-known Christians – St. Francis of Assisi, Thomas Becket, John Wesley and Martin Luther, spending about 44% of the book on Assisi, 26% on Becket, 12% on Wesley and 17% on Luther. The remaining 1% is introduction, conclusion and bibliography. Perhaps if he’d taken up fewer pages on the first two of his subjects, he might have written about twice as many individuals.
I wanted to like this book; really I did. I was interested in knowing more about great Christian leaders from our past and in answering the question, would I do what they did? I wanted to know what it was they had done that made them so unusual.
In exchange for receiving the book free of charge from the publisher through the Bookcrash program, I promised an honest review. An honest review you shall have.
It was clear that the author had neither a critique group nor an editor to assist him in his endeavour. The writing was poor and the book was filled with wrong word choices (for example, “pallet” for “palate” on page 126), typos (e.g. page 47 “The Bishop Guido wore an outfit of red and a large red cap. Under the cat was a man in his late thirties…”), spelling errors (e.g. “He wondered towards Castle Church”, p. 271), and backwards and dropped quotation marks.
Let me give you an example of the poor writing. All I need to do is give you the first couple of words in each paragraph on a single page.
My sample comes from page 24:
You see what I mean: lots of repetition, lots of subject-verb paragraph beginnings. To keep a reader interested and engaged, you need to vary your sentence structures. In dialogue, it’s useful to begin with a couple of tags, but then to let these fall away and let the conversation take over. It should be obvious who is speaking. If Hamilton didn’t have access to a critique group or editor, at least he could have read the book aloud to hear what it sounded like. This practice is very helpful in catching errors and words that are too frequently repeated. The author ought also to have proofread the book (preferably a proof copy from the printer) before multiple copies made it into the marketplace. An excellent guide for writers is the book, Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne. I encourage Hamilton to read it and apply what he learns.
Given the quality of the writing, it was difficult to read the stories. There were knowledge gaps and flaws in the author’s logic, but I persisted.
Would you do what I did (and pick up this book)? Thanks to this review, you won’t have to.
Read information about the authorAuthor of 7 books and over 1,000 short stories, articles and poems published in magazines, literary journals and the Internet.
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