|God is Not Great|
Finished - Mar 11th '10.
Christopher Hitchens' signature book in the field of religious criticism. I own and have read it. 283 pages long.
First read (March 2010)Edit
God is Not Great is always mentioned alongside Hitchens' name when religion is being discussed, and it's one of the frequently mentioned books amongst atheists. I bought it for myself thinking that it should be one I've read even if I was sceptical about it living up to its reputation. Read it in early 2010, some time after finishing Eon. Not having anything particularly inspiring at hand at the time I took a stab at Eternity but started getting through God is Not Great at a good pace. I'd read the first few chapters experimentally earlier in the year, and although I didn't enjoy reading it greatly I got through it and finished on March 11th.
It covers a lot of criticism of religion and summarises the issues well, the trains of thought I liked most were along the lines of the God of the Bible being a horrendous guy who shouldn't be revered anyway, and in fact in general the attitudes popular religions thrive on are stifling and oppressive. I didn't like the style of the book, Hitchens grates on me anyway with his habit of making statements about historical and political events without explaining himself. He does it and just assumes you'll agree with him or take his word for it. Certainly does it on purpose in debates, to put the opposition in a position of either having to stop him and admit they don't have his knowledge in this area, in which case he'll consider the debate won by default, or (and this is what is more likely to happen) being unable to respond and letting the thread of the argument go and picking up on something else. In debates it's fair but in a book I want to be persuaded, not informed, so meh.
Ratings and awardsEdit
Previous book: Greg Bear, Eon
Next book: Raymond E. Feist, Krondor: The Betrayal