Thursday, November 7, 2013

Book Review: The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan

The Story: A man named Christian learns that the city he lives in is going to be destroyed, and after he can’t convince his wife and children to leave with him, he heads off on his own. A man has pointed him in the direction of the Celestial City, where he can be saved and have eternal life, so Christian begins a pilgrimage to reach the city. Many dangers lie ahead, but he is determined to reach the end of his quest.

My Thoughts: This book is filled with numerous famous characters, from the main character Christian to villains such as Apollyon, the Giant Despair, and the nasty inhabitants of Vanity Fair. While the style of the book is archaic, which made it a bit of a challenge to read, the effort it takes to get through it is well worth it. It’s not a page-turner to modern eyes, but it is filled with brilliance that can be enjoyed and learned from.

The story’s pace wavers a bit towards the end of part one, heading off on a long series of theological rambles. Fortunately, the theological rambles are fascinating to read. The second part covers mostly the same ground as part one, but has enough unique details to keep it interesting. Everyone who likes fantasy, Christian fiction, or theology should take the time to explore this classic work.

Content Overview: This book is safe for most readers. There’s occasional mild violence, such as monstrous villains being beheaded or otherwise slain. Mildly scary scenes are common. A few vague references are made to sexual immorality and seduction.