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  • Norman Young

BOOK REVIEW: The Great Good Thing


If you handed me a book filled with Stephen King’s religious musings or a memoir of Jerry Seinfeld’s childhood in Massapequa, I would probably say “pass.” Don’t get me wrong—I love a good thriller novel. I also enjoy listening to talented comedians. But, I see no necessary correlation between a person’s ability to entertain others and their philosophical or religious depth. Why should I prefer a writer’s life-philosophy to that of a skilled carpenter or florist? I wouldn’t, necessarily.

Andrew Klavan is another story. In addition to being a skilled thriller writer and comedian, Andrew Klavan has a deep, analytical mind that is worth spending time getting to know. His fiction is interesting in the way Tolkien’s or Lewis’s fiction is interesting—not only for the entertainment value, but also for the depth with which important religious ideas are being explored. His comedy is worth listening to not only for the laughs, but also for its poignant cultural commentary.

Comedians often brag about the difficulty of their craft, but it is much harder to be a successful prophet than a good jester. A jester can always entertain the King by flattering his opinions and caricaturing his enemies