I don't judge a book by its cover. I judge it by how hungry
I become while reading it. The hungrier I become the better
the book. Can you read Heidi without stopping to eat
toasted bread with butter melted on it and thick slabs of
cheese on the side? I cannot even image that a person could.
I recently finished the Singer series by Calvin Miller. It was
actually a reread. Way back in my highschool or college years
I read them for the first time. Ever since then they have
been sitting on my bookshelf waiting patiently to be picked
up again. Last year my sister, known to some of you as
Philippine Sister, borrowed them to use in a homeschool
drama class she was teaching. They put on a big performance
using one or the other of the books. Sadly, I was not able to
make the showing and so missed my sweet niece Kinsey's
acting. After Philippine Sister returned the books I decided to
read them again before putting them back on the shelf.
These books are poetic narrative. They are a retelling of the
life of Christ through to the end times. The Singer begins the
narrative. The Singer represents Christ and is put to death for
the saving of the people on Terra (Earth). The Song tells of
the spreading of the gospel and the persecution of the church.
The Finale represents the end times and the final conquering
of Sarkon (Satan) and evil.
These are good books. They tell the most wonderful story.
Yet somehow the characters are flat and I have difficulty in
sympathizing with them. The end war, which should make
the heart just tremble with excitement, is lacking in oomph.
I recommend these books, but with this warning, they will
not make you hungry.
Dorothy L. Sayer's The Complete Stories, on the other hand,
will leave you craving tea (with cream luv), duck and ale. She
always tells a ripping good tale. The stories in this volume
are grouped into categories. First are the Lord Peter Wimsey
stories. Lord Peter is, as always, enigmatic, brilliant, and
yet, somehow, down to earth. What a personage Dorothy
Sayers has created. These are followed by the Montague Egg
stories. Who can resist a seller of fine wines and spirits, especially
when he (the fine wine seller) can't resist speaking in couplets.
"'Whether you're wrong or whether you're right, it's always better
to be polite,'" as it says in the Salesman's Handbook."(The
Poisoned Dow '08, p. 485) The volume ends with a series of
rather macabre stories. They will make you shiver as you cuddle
under your blanket. It is hard, hard, hard to beat Sayers for a
dose of delightful mystery reading.