Time for another Nelson Publishing book review! Woohoo! I chose to review this book by Kevin Harvey, because, well, it’s right up my alley! I am a pop culture geekling, and hardcore Christian nerds are a rare breed. So this book seemed like it would speak my language.
About the Book
Book description from Amazon.com:
Somehow, it’s hard to picture pop culture and Christianity going hand-in-hand, but maybe we simply aren’t looking at things the right way. All You Want to Know About the Bible in Pop Culture reveals places where readers may be surprised to find redeeming values and gospel messages in today’s movies, music, popular TV shows, and much more! When you look closely, past the outrageous outfits and the antics of teen pop-sensations, it’s easy to see that from the big screen to the small screen and right down to the radio waves, God and His stories are still prevalent in pop culture today. There are movies and television shows that speak eternal truth, reality show families who represent believers well, even fictional Christians portrayed in a positive light. And if you listen closely, musicians are still conversing with God as the original songwriters of the Bible did. For the reader searching for meaning in media today, All You Want to Know About the Bible in Pop Culture is the perfect choice. Features include: Fun Bible-based facts and trivia questions, Examples of biblical messages from current TV shows, films, and pop songs, A casual and engaging resource.
My Thoughts on the Book
Let’s just get this part out of the way – I didn’t like this book.
First off, this book is far shorter than it appears to be. About a quarter of the book is mazes, word games and crossword puzzles. What these have to do with the main topic, I really have no idea. Since it occupies a large portion of the book, you’d think it would hinted at on the cover. I was really disappointed when I turned the page, expected to be just over halfway done reading, to find that the book had ended so soon.
Then there was the content. Some of the analogies and references in the book were spot on (superheroes and prince charming, as the title says) but the majority were just a MAJOR stretch. Like, painfully and conspiratorily so. I tried reading a chapter out loud to my husband as we were driving one day, and he actually asked me to stop, it was that unbearable at times. I am bit more patient and OCD when it comes to reading, and even I had trouble getting through the Chapter on LOST and reality TV shows.
There are some story arches that you can find Biblical truths in the storytelling. But trying to find hidden Biblical allusions in reality TV shows like Pawn Stars and such? That’s just.. weird. And borderline sacrilegious in my personal opinion.
To quote another BookLook Blogger / reviewer, “After a few of these stretches, I was having difficulty determining if the goal here was to show true Biblical value in Hollywood or just to justify certain shows and movies.”
And again, “Some forms of art should perhaps be judged merely by their own merit, rather than attempting to impute righteousness where there is none.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself!
[Disclaimer: There are no affiliate links in this review. I am an independent product reviewer. I only review products I am truly interested in. I don’t accept payment for reviews. The products I take the time to jabber on about are either items I have personally purchased, or the product has been provided for review after me initiating contact and incessantly nagging for a sample. All of my reviews are unbiased regardless of how the item was obtained.]
Sorry Mr. Harvey, I share your fandoms, but I don’t think I’d recommend this book.
- Weekend at Morro Bay and Pismo Beach, California
- A Day at the Fresno Zoo!