Related to: 'Kingdom of Fools'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Badly Behaved Bible

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

The Bible is known as the scriptural bedrock of the Christian faith -- it's marvellous, it's uplifting, it's a joy to read -- but, while we know this is how we're supposed to feel about the Bible, in reality most of us find the very opposite. On opening the Bible, we are faced with a multitude of problems; from its form and historical content to sheer size and often distasteful stories, we can be left feeling overwhelmed and disheartened by this ancient book. In his honest and accessible style, Nick Page urges us to re-discover a fresh look at the Bible -- to learn how we can undo unhelpful ways of reading the Bible and demystifying its purpose and scope. Nick tackles what the Bible is and isn't, how we can critically read a sacred text and how we approach the difficulties in its content. Alongside helpful analysis and practical advice, Nick helps us re-discover how to read the Bible for the modern reader.

Hodder & Stoughton

Nick Page: The Longest Week, The Wrong Messiah, Kingdom of Fools

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

Essential reading...enlightening and informative...you will be sure to learn something new. - Church of England NewspaperIn this illuminating read, Nick Page strips away centuries of misrepresentation and myth to reveal the real personality portrayed in the gospels. Drawing on a wealth of historical and archaeological research, the result is a startling and vivid new portrait of Yeshua ben Yosef - Jesus of Nazareth.

Hodder & Stoughton

A Nearly Infallible History of the Reformation

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page
Hodder & Stoughton

The Dark Night of the Shed

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

Men, the midlife crisis, spirituality - and shedsA new bike - running the marathon - splashing out on a sports car - having an affair - taking up triathlon - upping sticks and moving to the country - getting divorced - even going into the church...There's a point in a man's life where he looks around him and asks whether this is really where he wants to be - what he wanted to do with his life. And even if he's achieved all his childhood dreams, maybe that's not enough any more.Nick Page has been there, and he decided to build a shed. Not to answer the question, but so that he'd at least be able to get some peace to think about it properly. Join him on a journey of discovery, into what the midlife crisis really is, and whether there's a better way to go at it than frittering away time and money trying to pretend you're really younger than you are.

Hodder & Stoughton

Revelation Road

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

If you're reading this, we're still alive. The end of the world has not occurred. But it can't be long now, can it?For two thousand years, the Book of Revelation has inspired countless conspiracy theorists, film-makers, writers and artists, as well as theologians and teachers. But why are we so bothered? After all, the end of the world still hasn't turned up, and it's been quite a while now.When Nick Page wanted to get to the bottom of what this mysterious book is really all about, he realised there was only one way to go about it: he had to go to the land of apocalypse. Travelling to Patmos via the ruined cities of the seven churches of Revelation, determined to seek out a revelation of his own, Nick explores the culture behind Revelation, who wrote it, why they wrote it, and what it means for us today.Mixing history, commentary, creative reconstruction and sun-crazed travelogue, here at last is the (perhaps not quite) final word on heaven, hell, the four horsemen of the apocalypse - and why the end of the world never does turn up when it's supposed to.

Hodder & Stoughton

A Nearly Infallible History of Christianity

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

From Abelard to Zwingli, via a multitude of saints and sinners, Nick Page guides us through the creeds, the councils, the buildings and the background of the Christian church in an illuminating, and perhaps ever so slightly irreverent way.Well-known as a writer, speaker, unlicensed historian and general information-monger, Nick Page combines in-depth research, historical analysis and cutting-edge guesswork to explore how on earth the Christian church has survived all that 2,000 years of heroes, villains and misfits could throw at it (mostly from the inside) to remain one of the most influential forces in the world today.'I was predestined to read this.' John Calvin.'I felt my heart strangely warmed. Or it could have been indigestion.' John Wesley.

Hodder Paperbacks

The Wrong Messiah

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page
Hodder & Stoughton

The Longest Week

Nick Page
Authors:
Nick Page

Adrian Plass

Adrian Plass is one of the most-loved Christian writers in the UK. He is the bestselling author of The Sacred Diary of Adrian Plass Aged 37¾ - which with its various sequels has sold millions of copies around the world. A somewhat bemused Anglican, Adrian and his wife Bridget live in the north of England travel widely to speak in churches, prisons, schools, and at festivals and literary events in the UK and around the world.

Anne Graham Lotz

Anne Graham Lotz is called the 'best preacher in the family' by her father, Billy Graham. She speaks around the globe with the wisdom and authority of years spent studying God's Word, and the New York Times named Anne one of the five most influential evangelists of her generation. She is a best-selling and award-winning author of fourteen books, including her most recent, Wounded by God's People. www.annegrahamlotz.org.

Brian D. McLaren

Brian McLaren is a bestselling author, internationally acclaimed speaker and outspoken advocate for 'a new kind of Christianity'. Named one of Time magazine's 25 most influential Evangelical Christians, McLaren was a pastor for over 20 years. He is a frequent guest on radio and television programmes, and an in-demand blogger on faith and public policy (brianmclaren.net). @brianmclaren

Brian Draper

Brian Draper is the author of Spiritual Intelligence, Less is More and most recently What Matters Most? He is a regular presenter on BBC Radio 4's Thought for the Day, and works with leaders and organisations to help nurture their spiritual intelligence. He is a writer, speaker, facilitator, as well as a retreat guide, and has introduced countless people to the ancient art of walking labyrinths.He often writes for U2.com and was formerly editor of the Christian current affairs magazine Third Way.

Brother Andrew

Brother Andrew was born in Holland and became a Christian while serving in the Dutch army. After leaving the army he applied for Bible school in the UK and studied at the Bible Training Institute (now the International Christian College) in Glasgow, Scotland. He has worked tirelessly to strengthen the persecuted church all over the world, encouraging believers in their faith and sharing the gospel with some of the most unlikely people.His book GOD'S SMUGGLER tells the story of the start of his work, smuggling Bibles into communist countries illegally during the Cold War, which developed into the worldwide ministry now called Open Doors International. GOD'S SMUGGLER became an international best-seller with over ten million copies sold in English.After the fall of communism in Europe, Brother Andrew shifted his focus to China and the Middle East, and the incredible story of his ongoing ministry can be read in his next book LIGHT FORCE.His most recent book is SECRET BELIEVERS: WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MUSLIMS TURN TO CHRIST?.

Dave Tomlinson

Dave Tomlinson was a house church leader for many years and is now an Anglican priest. Unable to accept the narrow restrictions of his tradition, he founded the legendary Holy Joe's, a church in a pub in Clapham for disaffected church drop-outs. He is now Vicar of St Luke's, Holloway, a thriving parish church in north London. He is the author of the seminal The Post-Evangelical, I Shall Not Want and Re-enchanting Christianity, and most recently How to Be a Bad Christian and The Bad Christian's Manifesto.

Eugene Peterson

Eugene Peterson was a pastor, author, scholar and poet. He grew up in Montana and earned his B.A. in philosophy from Seattle Pacific University, his S.T.B. from New York Theological Seminary, and his M.A. in Semitic languages from Johns Hopkins University. He served as a pastor for 29 years and then became Professor Emeritus of Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, retiring in 2006.Eugene Peterson is perhaps best known for his book THE MESSAGE: THE BIBLE IN CONTEMPORARY LANGUAGE and is also known for his involvement in the Renovaré spiritual formation movement. The books in his spiritual theology series, including THE JESUS WAY and PRACTISE RESURRECTION, are widely acclaimed.After retiring from full-time teaching, Eugene and his wife Jan lived in the Big Sky Country of rural Montana. Eugene Peterson died in October 2018.

Henri J. M. Nouwen

Henri Nouwen (1932-1996) is widely recognised as one of the most influential spiritual writers of the twentieth century. A Dutch-born Catholic priest, professor and pastor, he gained international renown as the author of over forty books on the spiritual life, including such classics as The Wounded Healer, The Inner Voice of Love, The Return of the Prodigal Son, and Life of the Beloved. Nouwen's books have been translated into more than thirty languages and have sold upwards of seven million copies worldwide, resonating with people across the religious, spiritual, cultural and political spectrum. Since his death in 1996, ever-increasing numbers of readers, writers, teachers, and seekers have been guided by his literary legacy.

J.I. Packer

J. I. Packer is an eminent theologian. Professor Emeritus at Regent College, Vancouver, he is a bestselling author known the world over for such classics as Knowing God. He is considered to be one of the most important evangelical theologians of the late 20th century.

James Bryan Smith

James Bryan Smith is assistant professor of practical theology and chaplain at Friends University in Wichita, Kansas.Through his work with Richard Foster's Renovare organisation, James Bryan Smith is emerging as a spiritual leader for a new generation.

Jo Swinney

Jo Swinney is an author and speaker and a regular contributor to the website Christian Today. She works as the Director of Church Communications for CPO, working on developing partnerships and resources for church outreach. She lives in southwest London with her husband, an Anglican clergyman, and their two children.

John Van Sloten

John Van Sloten is a pastor, teacher and writer who lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. For the past 20 years he's been exploring a worldview that seeks to discern God's voice in all things: the Bible, the arts, sport, science, film, music, literature, history, maths, nature and human nature. John's first book, The Day Metallica Came to Church: Searching for the Everywhere God in Everything (Square Inch, August 2010), listened for God's whispers in pop culture. John has been the recipient of two John Templeton Foundation grants, exploring the intersection of faith and science in the context of preaching.