Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Book 16/60: Through Painted Deserts by Don Miller

Somehow, I'm now reading five books at once.

Should be good, though. I'll be through with The Stand soon, and I may read Woyzeck during my lunch break tomorrow.

This book I would have waited until I'd finished the others, but my church ordered it specifically because I'd asked about it, and they want me to write a review for them, so I'm going to go ahead and get it done sooner than later.

Don Miller is most famous, I suppose, for Blue Like Jazz. I've had quite a few friends recommend BLJ (though none for this particular projetc). I read about half of that book one night while waiting for Hurricane Rita (she stood us up) and, while it was an enjoyable and engaging read, I didn't really see what the big deal about it was. I didn't think that anything the man was saying was wrong, but I guess I didn't think it was particularly novel, either. I'm not sure, either way, I wasn't that impressed.

Through Painted Deserts is a republishing of Miller's first book: observations and ruminations during a soul-searching cross-country road trip Miller took at age 21 from Houston (hey!) to Oregon. The book is subtitled "Life, God, and Beauty on the Open Road." Seems a bit like A Walk Across America for today's youth. (I remember Walk Across America as being beautiful; however, I was in grade school when I read it and my standards where much different in those days. I should revisit that someday)

Anywho, interesting thing is that Miller's less-formulaic, more-relational approach to the gospel has made him a favorite in the emerging church movement, though Miller doesn't really consider himself to be emergent. (Indeed, what I remember from BLJ didn't seem to fall too far into the emerging line of thought, though I can totally see how that movement would love most of what he has to say)

The book is published by Thomas Nelson publishers. Miller's also written BLJ, Searching for God Knows What, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, and To Own a Dragon (which may find its way on the next list) His web site is http://www.donaldmillerwords.com

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