August 19, 2006

How To Read An Unwritten Language

Posted in family, literature, psychology at 8:37 pm by Jerry

I just finished reading a book by Philip Graham called How to Read an Unwritten Language. It was a book given to my wife from my mother-in-law. Becky still hasn’t read it (her loss). From beginning to end, I was never convinced that the title was a good one. It just sounds too much like a title for a non-fiction text. I understand why it was chosen, but I think Graham could have done better.

Aside from the title, the book was really good. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book psychologically involved to this extent. The spiritual/religious imagery was so subtle, and in my experience, original — which is always good. Rarely do I find symbolic imagery used from more than one religion. Most of the time I can only find Christian imagery.

Religious imagery was not a large component in the novel. But I think it was there because the novel was about finding personal meaning in unique stories. The stories were many and varied, but they were all filled with psychological struggles. The main character sought out these stories because they gave him what he wasn’t getting from the relationships he grew up with and entered into. Of course, I won’t tell you how it ended. I’ll just say one word — original.

I’m gonna place this novel in my top fifteen list (hovering somewhere), which means I’ll definitely have to read it again.

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