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The Deadline

Deadline by Randy Alcorn

Randy Alcorn, popular Christian author of books like Heaven, The Treasure Principle and others has written a work of fiction with an eye towards murder mysteries. The book centers around a newspaper reporter named Jake Woods, who writes weekly columns on controversial and interesting subjects. He and his best friends are going to pick up pizza for their weekend party ritual when they crash into the side of the road, eventually killing Jake’s best friends Doc and Finney. What happens next points the novel in the murder mystery direction as Jake receives a note that this crash was not an accident but a planned murder.

What I resonated with about the book is that it spoke of the real life events that lead to damaged relationships caused by sin, divorce, and brokenness. Throughout the book, Jake is trying to figure how he can repair his relationship with his daughter, who suffers greatly at the hands of bad choices. Yet, knowing the right thing to do and doing it are often two different things. He ends up coming to the side of his daughter and his ex-wife in ways that he didn’t think were possible. The redeeming value of Jake’s character is his pushing through the fa├žade of his own life, reporting and moral failings to come , and seeing what God has in store for his life.

I really wanted to like this book for its murder mystery appeal, but I think it was a bit confusing with all the theological and moral arguments in the book. I felt at times like I was at a pro-life rally, a class on moral relativisim, and a Glen Beck talk show segment all rolled into a story about a guy trying to find out who killed his friends. Not that I rail against these views, but I found that it took my attention away from the major plot line of the story. Yet, having not read many Christian fiction books, I am not aware of how the plot lines interface with moral musings.

Thanks to Waterbrook/Multnomah Press for the review copy of this book in exchange for review.


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