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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Eve Review

Eve Description:

When a shipping container washes ashore on an island between our world and the next, John the Collector finds a young woman inside—broken, frozen, and barely alive. With the aid of Healers and Scholars, John oversees her recovery and soon discovers her genetic code connects her to every known human race. She is a girl of prophecy and no one can guess what her survival will mean...

No one but Eve, Mother of the Living, who calls her “daughter,” and invites her to witness the truth about her story—indeed, the truth about us all.

Eve is a bold, unprecedented exploration of the Creation narrative, true to the original texts and centuries of scholarship—yet with breathtaking discoveries that challenge traditional misconceptions about who we are and how we’re made. As The Shack awakened readers to a personal, non-religious understanding of God, Eve will free us from faulty interpretations that have corrupted human relationships since the Garden of Eden.

Eve opens a refreshing conversation about the equality of men and women within the context of our beginnings, helping us see each other as our Creator does—complete, unique, and not constrained to cultural rules or limitations.

Thoroughly researched and exquisitely written, Eve is a masterpiece that will inspire readers for generations to come.

My Review:

Let me begin by saying I enjoyed reading The Shack and I truly felt like it gave me a new perspective on God.  So when I was given the opportunity to review Young's new novel, Eve, I decided to do so.  Eve is a quick read, I finished it in a matter of hours.  The story is engaging and I found that I couldn't put it down as I was compelled to see how it would unravel.  

That God was able to take a severely physically and emotionally broken Lilly (the main character) and not only make her whole again, but help her to recognize just how loved she was by God was a redeeming quality of this book.  Unfortunately I found that many of the other aspects of the book caused me concern.

First, which considering that this is a novel it may seem inconsequential to some, is that the book is written from the point of view that the account of creation in the Bible is not a literal account.  Specifically that it took millions of years for God to create the world rather than the Biblical account of 6 days and a day of rest.  While this is more of a personal belief it was something I found disturbing.

Second, Young's interpretation of the creation of Adam and Eve take a lot of liberties with the story.  Adam was created as an infant, whom God nursed.  Eve was born as an infant after Adam's pseudo-pregnancy with her and then Adam raised her to adulthood.  God's decision to create Eve was not so much because "it is not good for man to be alone" (Genesis 2:18) but because Adam was dissatisfied with being alone.

A third concern with the story is that Young incorporates the fable of Lilith in the storyline, turning Lilly into Lilith-who offers herself to Adam as a substitute wife.  While the characters do state twice that Lilith is a "fable", the inclusion of this fable in the story of creation that was "thoroughly researched" is disconcerting to me.  I realize that it is fiction, but should someone who is not strong in their faith read this it could create a stumbling block.

There are a few other concerns that I had, such as Eve not leaving Eden when Adam did (Genesis 3:23-24), Eve's rejection of Adam after God confronted them (another liberty taken as there is no mention of this in the Bible) and others.  There were enough that I am uncomfortable recommending this book.  While it does seem the author's purpose was to empower women (in the acknowledgements Young writes, "Thank you to the myriad of voices being raised world-wide that will make this century the Century of the Woman...") it is my opinion that to do so by distorting God's word is an injustice.

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