The Shack

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Editorial and Opinion  |  House: Booksie Classic
A book review for the inspirational book, The Shack, written by William P. Young.

Submitted: July 28, 2008

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Submitted: July 28, 2008

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Until recently, I have never been an avid reader. In fact, I can count on one hand how many books I have read before turning forty, and all of those books I had to hyper focus on them; however, in the last four or five years I have read nearly a hundred. Now I hang out at bookstores. I have picked up many different books and most of them I have put down. I have read some really good books and I have read some great books, but the last book to catch my eye was The Shack, and after reading it, rather quickly I might add, it is at the top of my list at this very moment in time.

Written by William P. Young, The Shack is a story of a man named Mackenzie Allen Philips, or Mack as he is fondly referred to during the book. Mack had a rough childhood and has never come to grips with having an abusive father, but he strives to lead a good life. He is married and has a family of his own, but when tragedy strikes, in the form of Mack’s daughter, Missy, being murdered, Mack is thrown into despair, known to him as his “Great Sadness.”

Leaping forward four years, a note appears in his mailbox and he is summoned, presumably by God, to the shack where the blood drench dress of his murdered daughter was found; her body was never recovered. Could it be a trap by the killer, taunting him; or could it truly be Him, God himself, wanting to spend a weekend with Mack?

The book is just under 250 pages and a quick, enjoyable and enlightening read, even for a slow reader, like me. There are times during the story where I have had to re-read some of the passages and it can be hard sometimes to get my head around some of the things said, but if we fully understood God and all his mysteries than we would not need faith, right?

The book has so far been well received and has gathered great reviews; however, I am sure it has not been without some controversy, although I have not heard any as of yet. It has even spawned some websites.

The wonderful story that unfolded has had a profound effect on me and it has changed the way I think about a lot of things, especially organized religion. I was born a Catholic and have felt the guilt of not being religious enough, even though I consider myself very spiritual. Now I now label myself, just a Christian.

Since reading, The Shack, I have been experiencing a strange sense of peace and joy. I have a new outlook as well, and hope and pray it continues. I have high hopes that many others will feel like I do, and it will affect them like it has affected me.

Like his character Mack, author William Young has a story of his own that I hope he will someday share. Although born in Canada, he now lives with his family in the Pacific Northwest. He was raised by missionary parent and was brought up among a stone-age tribe in the highlands of what was New Guinea. He suffered great loss as a child and young adult, but has overcome and as he puts it, now enjoys the—wastefulness of grace.

If I had another thumb, I would certainly give this book three thumbs up.


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