Thursday, October 6, 2016

Unreasonable Hope by Chad Veach

Chad and Julia Veach’s firstborn is Georgia, who has lissencephaly, a brain disorder which keeps her at a three-month-old infant’s development, although she is now over three years old, and is characterized by seizures and a lack of interaction. Chad’s book focuses on telling their story and communicating the faith and hope God provide in their journey. The book has four sections: The Struggle, Remedy, Rest and Better, each ending with “In Conclusion”, which include excellent action steps. So far, so good. Unfortunately for me, the author, who is in his mid-30s, writes heavily from that perspective and jargon. If your daily vocabulary includes “amazing”; “sucks”; “like” as a verb or adverb, as in (referring to Abraham talking to God), “He was like, ‘Let’s do this thing,’” (p. 180), then you likely will like this book. If, on the other hand, you do not know the meanings of, “One night Abraham was kicking it with God in the tent,” (p. 181) or, “A funny thing about God is that he doesn’t come in to fix things and then peace out,” (p. 115) or if you might find yourself wondering what he means when describing his second child as “my little gangster baby,” then you will either need some translation, or you might want to find a book written by someone either older or less entrenched in current culture. If, like me, you are not acquainted with CrossFit or do not understand what “the OGs of the fishing world” are when referring to Simon Peter and the others, much of the narration will be lost on you. In addition, if you find no humor or cuteness in hearing someone renarrate the biblical stories of Joseph and Moses by referring them as “Jo” and “Mo”, I’d move on. Its vocabulary is even already outdated, as it includes instances of that annoying cutesiness from a few years ago: “Such wonderful words to speak over your family. Not.” (p. 34) Every once in a while, I read a book by an author I think of as writing with one eye on the mirror, thinking “how clever am I!” This is one of those. Interestingly, long after my opinion solidified, the author notes on page 91, “. . . I’d like to describe the type of person I am. I love being affirmed after I’ve done something well. I’m the guy who puts one dish in the dishwasher at home and looks around to see if anyone noticed.” This book is, to say the least, a mixed bag. Proceed with caution. I received this book for free in exchange for my unbiased review through the Thomas Nelson BookSneeze Program.

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