Friday, July 1, 2011

Fiction Friday: Christian Fiction

I have not read a lot of Christian fiction.  I'm actually still in the process of getting over a personal bias I've built up against Christian fiction.  I'm not sure where this bias has come from.  Maybe I read some bad Christian fiction in my teenage years and forgot about it, but have subconsciously built up a mental and emotional block against Christian fiction.  I think a more likely cause is that the sort of people who come up to me raving about the latest Christian romance novel they just read are not the sort of people with whom I see myself sharing literary taste.

 However this bias came into existence, I'm learning that I really need to get over it (at least somewhat--because let's face it: there is a lot of BAD Christian fiction out there).  I don't have a lot of time for reading, but last summer I did manage to read through the Dragon Keeper series by Donita K. Paul.  These are Christian fantasy books centering around a girl named Kale Allerion, who (this might come as quite a shock, given the title of the series) keeps Dragons.

Okay, so these books were actually really good.  And I'm not just saying that because I kinda sorta have a wild obsession with Dragons.  They reminded me of a Christian version of Eragon (and let me take this opportunity to say that Christopher Paolini is sitting in my literary naughty corner until I have the final book of the Inheritance Trilogy Cycle in my hands--gettr done!).

I also took the time to finally read the Space Trilogy by C. S. Lewis.  But honestly, C. S. Lewis doesn't really fit the category of Christian fiction in my head.  I know that it IS Christian fiction on a basic level, but it doesn't fit the category that I still hold a little bit of bias against.  I've read plenty of C. S. Lewis' fiction and always loved it, but that's kind of because he's C. S. Lewis and amazing.

I also read a book by a Christian author named C. S. Lakin called The Wolf of Tebron. It was good and I would like to read a little more by this author, but her books aren't typically in libraries (at least not ones in po-dunk towns), and doesn't take "I'll babysit your kids for free if you give me books" as acceptable payment.

So in the next few months, I'm hoping to read some of the Christian fiction that's available at the library in the po-dunk town where I live.  I've been meaning to read "Redeeming Love" by Francine Rivers for a LONG time.  I'm not sure if I'll like it, not because it's not good.  I'm sure it is.  I'm just not sure it's going to be my style.  But I love the book of Hosea in the Bible, and apparently it's based heavily on that, so it's got a good fighting chance.  I'm only skeptical because a lot of those people who have recommended it to me are the type of people with whom I doubt I share literary taste.

I'm also hoping to be able to save up to buy some of the newer Christian fiction that is available.  I've read an interesting blog about a Christian fantasy/sci fi novel entitled A Dream Before Dying: The Initiation.  That's one I am looking into reading in the near future.  You know...when I actually have spare time for reading....

I really think, though, that I need to get over this bias about Christian authors.  The reason?  Well, I think that whether I like it or not, I'm going to end up being a Christian author.  So I'd better start getting used to the idea, and I'd better start figuring out what's going on in the industry.

Do you read Christian fiction?  What are some of your favorites?  I need to build up a reading list!

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