Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Book review and giveaway: The Grace Effect

When I got an email about a new book called The Grace Effect, and read the synopsis, I immediately knew that it was a book that I really wanted to read. Here's a bit about this book, from the press release that I received:

About The Grace Effect:
"Simply defined, the ‘grace effect’ is an observable phenomenon—that life is demonstrably better where authentic Christianity flourishes.
What does Christianity give us beyond televangelists, potlucks, and bad basketball leagues?  Not much, according to the secular Left.  The world, they say, would be a better place without it.  
Historian and Christian apologist Larry Taunton has spent much of his career refuting just this sort of thinking, but when he encounters Sasha, a golden-haired orphan girl whose life has been shaped by atheistic theorists, he discovers an unlikely champion for the transforming power of grace.  
Through the narrative of Sasha’s redemption, we see the false promises of socialism; the soul-destroying influence of unbelief; and how a society cultivates its own demise when it rejects the ultimate source of grace.  We see, in short, the kind of world the atheists would give us: a world without Christianity—cold, pitiless, and graceless.
And yet, as Sasha shows us, it is a world that is not beyond the healing power of “the grace effect.”  Occasionally infuriating, often amusing, but always inspiring, The Grace Effect will have you cheering for the courageous little girl who shamed the academic elitists of our day.
As I've mentioned here before, I have spent about 15 months living in Ukraine and working as a missionary. On my first trip I spent 3 months in western Ukraine, and then later I lived for a year in eastern Ukraine.  While I was living in the country, I met lots of wonderful people and really enjoyed getting to see the country and learn more about its history. That all being said, Larry Taunton really gets it right with this book. The Ukraine that I lived in ten years ago was a seriously depressed, overly bureaucratic, hopeless place.  I really appreciated Mr. Taunton's descriptions in his book of why Ukraine is the way that it is, and what has happened in this country's history.  

The Grace Effect starts out with a very intense retelling of a discussion between the author and a famous atheist. This was a little daunting for me, as I'm not really into such discussions. However, after this prologue, the book becomes the story of the author and his wife's adoption of a young girl named Sasha from Ukraine.  Mr. Taunton has a gift for descriptions, and I really got a sense of what he experienced during his time in Ukraine.  He also does a good job of showing how profoundly Christianity has affected our culture, in many varied ways, some which we don't even realize.  I really enjoyed reading this book and almost finished it on the night I started it, but then started to get sleepy and decided to finish it the next day so that I didn't miss anything.

If you have any interest in the topic of international adoption, or atheism or Eastern Europe, I'd highly recommend checking out this book. It's descriptive, though-provoking and very well written. 

I have good news! I'm giving away a copy of this book to one of you.  Open to US mailing addresses only, enter at the Rafflecopter widget below. 

 “Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or
services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it 
on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally 
and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance 
with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the 
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


bliophiles said...

I luv to win The Grace Effect

laura20v said...

looks like one i would enjoy!

Frugal Tumbleweed Acres said...

I'm a Christ follower and like to read Christian books.

Emillie Rose said...

I love to read so I would love to win!
hisprincess886 at yahoo dot com

Stacey L said...

Iwould love to win to find out more about how Christ has effected our culture

Patty C said...

I'd love to read this looks like it would be very thought provoking and an interesting read.

Diane Melendez said...

I am always intrigued by the ways in which people connect to the Grace of God. Would love to read this story. Sounds like a compelling read. :)

moushka said...

Sounds like a very intriguing book.

laura20v said...

this looks like a great book i would love to read!!

Renee G said...

I'd love to read about their adoption experience.

tarter95 said...

I would like to win because it sounds like a good book.
tarter95 at hotmail dot com

Carmen said...

I love reading books that really make you think and questions things, and this sounds like that kind of book.
Thanks for the chance :)

SummerSorbet said...

I would love to win this because I have a friend that would absolutely LOVE this book and I would give it to her.
~Darlene Arnold
snacee (at) scottsboro (dot) org

AMY said...

I'd like to win because my husband and I were just listening to a radio program about this book and I would love to give it to my husband. cwitherstine at zoominternet dot net