Ladies of Grace Book Club
This biography tells the story of the unique friendship between Christopher Hitchens, a stark atheist, and the author, Larry Taunton, an evangelical Christian and defender of the faith. The relationship is quite a juxtaposition at first glance, and then becomes very much believable in light of how Spirit-led conversations (self-control, gentleness, quick to listen, slow to anger) can create and maintain friendships even amongst those with very different worldviews, leading to critical Gospel dialogue, which might otherwise be quickly shut down.
In the book, Taunton tells Hitchens’ story from childhood all the way to his death due to cancer. The reader gets a glimpse into Hitchens’ background and up-bringing and how all of that possibly relates to his worldview (through the lens of Taunton, of course)… a brief look into the mind and personal conversations of one very outspoken atheist.
With all that said, there is great debate about whether Taunton should have revealed all that he did in the book about these personal discussions with Hitchens. Critics also question Taunton’s motivation in presenting these exchanges (i.e. determining to present the facade that a well-known atheist, Hitchens, had a deathbed conversion, etc., which I do not think Taunton does).
For this reader, it is inspiring to consider how a Christian’s demeanor could open up these exchanges. How might the world change if there were more Christians who were quick to listen and slow to anger- this reviewer included?