I just finished this book….I’ll give it 6 stars on a 5-star scale. it was very impacting and timely. This is a story about a particularly hard time in American history, but it is also about the sometimes crushing effects of “progress”–what happens when government and everything else gets bigger and bigger and little people get destroyed and left behind. It exposes the ugliness of greed–getting rich by exploiting the poor. The prose was powerful and driving–invoked a sense of inevitability and urgency.
It also exposed the ugliness of religious fanaticism. There is a preacher who has left preaching behind in his disillusionment, but you begin to see that his struggle is a journey towards real life and truth. He came out of the certainty of his religion–he thought he’d become lost, but he was really finding his way. He came out of a religion that was devoid of life and finally begins to see the truth, awakes to true life and finds satisfaction in his God-given mission.
If you’ve seen the movie, it’s like reading the back cover of the book–not a bad introduction.