2 Stars Out Of 5
This book was a mixed bag.
February 12, 2011
Brian Tome's Free Book is about the freedom that comes from knowing Jesus. It's about stepping out in faith--overcoming fear, guilt, moralistic legalism, strongholds, and spiritual forces. It's about walking in the grace of God. It's also about dreaming big dreams for the glory of God, and pursuing them with passion.
From the moment I agreed to review this book, I wanted to like it. The title, Free Book, caught my attention, as did the orange cover (the book however is not "free," you have to purchase it. However, I got my copy free through BookSneeze). I liked the challenge reviewing a book would give me. The back cover's synopsis of the book was intriguing. I looked forward to it's arrival with great anticipation.
However, my enthusiasm waned after I began reading the book. Tome writes in a conversational style that engages his reader, but often speaks with vagueness. I found myself repeatedly asking, "What exactly does that mean?" He is also fond of making over the top statements like, "We don't need another book about the cross. . . . But a book on freedom? Yes." Tome is confident that there are ample resources that explore and explain the cross, but not many books exists to explore and explain freedom in Christ. However, it is the cross that makes freedom possible in the first place. They aren't mutually exclusive topics, and based on what he says elsewhere in the book, I believe he would agree. I found myself agreeing with much of what he said, but annoyed at how he said it.
The book felt like a discipleship manual for new believers and seekers who had negative religious experiences. It's a primer for postmodern believers who fear becoming shackled by religion. Although I have concerns, I find there some commendable things:
Ã¢â¬Â¢ Chapter 5, "The Forgiveness Freeway," is an excellent treatment of overcoming guilt and bitterness.
Ã¢â¬Â¢ Chapter 6, "Strongholds," offers helpful insights into seeing the "why" behind some of the things we struggle with.
Ã¢â¬Â¢ Chapter 10, "Blahs, Break, Blues, and Blessings," does a wonder job of explaining the process of change.
I agree with the general message of the book, we are free in Christ. However, I had to make myself finish reading the book, and I have struggled to write this review. Overall, Free Book was a mixed bag. I didn't hate it, but I didn't like it much either.
Disclaimer: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.