Review: Saint Francis (Christian Encounters Series)


Book: Saint Francis: Christian Encounter Series

Author: Robert West

You may or may not remember that one of my goals for 2011 was to read more consistently. I've always loved reading, but in recent years, my reading has been practically nonexistent. That needed to change. It took me a while to get back in the swing of things, but during the last half of 2011, I started reading again.

One of the first books I read was Robert West's biography on Saint Francis. I've always been fascinated by the saint who stripped down to his birthday suit and renounced his former life of wealth, and West's biography gave me greater insight into the life and theology of a man who would do such a thing.

I read Saint Francis immediately following my reading of David Platt's Radical, and while it may seem like the books have nothing in common, together, they challenged me to do life differently. After reading these books and discussing them with Dennis, we decided to adjust our finances in order to give more freely. It may not seem like much, but it's a start.

At only 221 pages, Saint Francis is a quick read, but the story was bogged down at times by West's writing style. He meticulously describes the historical and cultural world that Francis lived in, but he could have done a better job of weaving those details into Francis' actual story. As it stands, the historical passages seem a bit disjointed from the overall thrust of the book.

All of that said, I would still recommend this book to anyone who is curious about Francis of Assisi, a man whose great concern for the poor and personal vow of poverty literally changed the world.

This book was provided to me free of charge by Thomas Nelson publishers in exchange for my honest review. If you're interested in becoming a reviewer for Thomas Nelson, check out BookSneeze.

Until next time, grace and peace.