Monday, May 4, 2009

Shame by Greg Garrett

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing


(David C. Cook - May 2009)


Greg Garrett


Greg Garrett has published newspaper and magazine features, short stories, personal and critical essays, reviews, encyclopedia articles, novels, a memoir, and books of nonfiction during his thirty-year writing career.

Author of the critically acclaimed novels Free Bird (chosen by Publishers Weekly and the Rocky Mountain News [Denver] as one of the best first novels of 2002) and Cycling, as well as the nonfiction books The Gospel Reloaded (with Chris Seay), Holy Superheroes!, the spiritual autobiography Crossing Myself, The Gospel According to Hollywood, and the forthcoming Stories from the Edge, Dr. Garrett is a past winner of the Pirate's Alley William Faulkner Prize for Fiction, and a regional CASE gold medalist for nonfiction.

He was elected to the Texas Institute of Letters in 2005 for his lifetime literary achievements. Professor of English at Baylor University, Dr. Garrett was named the Outstanding Baylor Faculty Member for 1994 by the Baylor Student Congress, and received the university administration's outstanding professor award in 1996. He received his Ph.D. in English from Oklahoma State University, and recently completed the M.Div. at the Episcopal Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, where he lives, writes, and serves as a lay preacher at St. David's Episcopal Church.


It's hard to appreciate the life you have when you're wondering about the one you might have had.

John Tilden's glory days are far behind him, and now it seems like all he has is the monotony of everyday living. He certainly thought there'd be more to it than his ramshackle Oklahoma farm and a mundane job coaching basketball at his old high school. He questions his fatherhood skills too: His oldest son won't speak to him, his younger son wants to quit the basketball team, and now his daughter wants to go out on dates. He loves his wife, but the marriage has settled into complacency.

With John's twentieth high school reunion approaching, he has agreed to play in an exhibition game with the old championship team. And his ex-girlfriend's back in town, newly single. What might have been now seems closer than ever.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Shame, go HERE.

My thoughts:

With a plot that could be the real life story of someone you know, maybe even yourself, this book is riveting with its stark portrayal of one mans struggle with with regret and temptation. There are several storylines intertwined in this book, all compelling, and you can't help but empathize with almost every character in this book at some point. As John comes face to face with "what might have been" - will he choose his comfortable, if not complacent life, or will he trade it away to reclaim the life he wished he'd had. Great story, great characters, and with a backdrop of basketball (which I personally love), and even though it pushes the envelope a bit, this book scores big for me.

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