For his very first fiction book, this is very good. Easy to see how his journalism background plus the fact he lived in the Chicago area enabled him to put this intriguing story together. We purchased two copies, one for us and one for a family member, who lives out of state, but went to Northwestern Univ. and still loves to come back to Chicago when possible. I read it in 3 days, as it was hard to put down, even though for a gramma I have a fairly busy schedule!
Some days it is just fun to relax and read a good thriller. The Ambition is one such book. It has multiple storylines, a great plot, and plenty of shock value. Pastor Eric Snow has the opportunity of a lifetime to become a voice for the people, but is it really what God wants? As the possibilities open up, it seems that there may be many forces at work in Illinois politics, and while the Pastor tries to determine God's will for his life, others have ambitions, too.
I love the fact that Strobel doesn't hesitate to play on the potential for corruption in any political system, regardless of who is in power. That it can be a slippery slope for the most idealistic of individuals is made clear; even the most â€˜righteous' person among us can be blinded by power and adulation of the masses. It is never easy to balance the need for politicians to curry public favor against the need for Christians to work for the King.
I enjoyed the book; it had good pacing, strong characters, and a really engaging story. With its action taking place in church boardrooms, Chicago eateries of various stripe, a judge's chambers, with reporters, church elders, mobsters, politicians, and gamblers, it definitely carries a broad picture of what happens when the compromising worldview of non-believers is intersected with the uncompromising worldview of believers, and how the power of a sovereign God is uninhibited by either.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255
What are my thoughts? This book is AMAZING! It is fast paced and keeps you riveted until the last page. It is one of those legal thrillers that brings you in close to see the heart of deception. You combine danger, deceit and death and you have yourself one roller coaster ride. I read this book deep into the night. The characters blew me away. They were deep and their lives were filled with ambition. Ambition that sets them on a road to pride and danger. A life they were not looking for, but found none the less. What I love is the fact that we see humility come. We see the characters face the very thing that brought them to be where they were. They get mixed up in such deceit they soon lose who they are. But God has a way of bringing them back and bringing the truth to light. You are going to enjoy this book. Hold on to your seat, cause it's a crazy ride!
This book was a gift from Zondervan for it's review.
The Ambition by Lee Strobel is the best-selling journalist's first novel. Several stories of high-powered men in Chicago come together in a climactic way. The Bugatti brothers are known for their control of the Chicago mafia and their business as cut-throat loan sharks. Tommy O'Sullivan has coasted through much of his life on his last name until a gambling addiction puts him deep in debt to the Bugattis and he participates in a bribe that will change the city forever. Eric Snow is a respected pastor of a megachurch in Chicago who is thinking about switching careers to politics, but his best friend questions his motives. Garry Strider's life is going pretty well, with a successful career as an investigative journalist and live-in girlfriend, Gina. But when Gina gets some religion, she moves out and starts pushing him to consider finding faith himself so they can be married. Instead Garry starts investigating the pastor at Gina's church, Eric Snow. Strobel takes these disconnected stories and weaves them with suspense until they come together with a crash. Where Strobel really shines is in his portrayal of Snow and his church. The church tries so hard to fit in with pop culture, that they try to play it down when miracles begin occurring there. They refuse to call them miracles or anything supernatural in order to keep from being attacked by scientists and atheists. Strobel really doesn't have time to develop the characters too deeply but the story is entertaining and thought-provoking. Strobel wrote the premier apologetic work of the late twentieth century in The Case for Christ. This doesn't live up to that level of writing, but it's a good read that will keep readers turning the pages. I hope that Strobel gives fiction another shot soon.