Author: Michel Faber
Genre: Speculative Fiction
Description: It begins with Peter, a devoted man of faith, as he is called to the mission of a lifetime, one that takes him galaxies away from his wife, Bea. Peter becomes immersed in the mysteries of an astonishing new environment, overseen by an enigmatic corporation known only as USIC. His work introduces him to a seemingly friendly native population struggling with a dangerous illness and hungry for Peter’s teachings—his Bible is their “book of strange new things.” But Peter is rattled when Bea’s letters from home become increasingly desperate: typhoons and earthquakes are devastating whole countries, and governments are crumbling. Bea’s faith, once the guiding light of their lives, begins to falter.
Suddenly, a separation measured by an otherworldly distance, and defined both by one newly discovered world and another in a state of collapse, is threatened by an ever-widening gulf that is much less quantifiable. While Peter is reconciling the needs of his congregation with the desires of his strange employer, Bea is struggling for survival. Their trials lay bare a profound meditation on faith, love tested beyond endurance, and our responsibility to those closest to us. (via Goodreads)
Thoughts: When the end of 2014 was drawing to a close, I was hear a lot about this book and I thought a bit about getting a copy, especially since it was in a genre that I try to avoid as much as possible. But due to hearing about the book quite a bit on the various book podcasts that I listen to, I eventually relented and requested the book.
The first half of the book started a little slowly for me, as I felt that the book felt a little dense for me and as a result I struggled through this part of the book. But there was something that kept me from pulling the plug on the book.
Once I got through the first half of the book, I felt engaged with the book and could understand the hype of the book. I did like how Faber enveloped the reader in Peter's world and that I felt as though I was with him as he did his missionary work with Csan and how he tried to find out what was happening at his base while doing his missionary work.
There were two things that I would have liked more of in the book would have been more of Bea's perspective and a guide for the Csan's language, sa there were a few words that I couldn't make sense of. I also liked that it took me out of my comfort zone and gave me a different perspective of missionary work Highly recommended.