Well researched and fueled with a genuine feel for history, plus a curiously different take on faith, Stan Law’s Peter and Paul tells the story of two famous Christian leaders in the years that followed Christ’s death and resurrection. The author creates vivid characters filled with the sort of self-doubt and faithful longing that might be expected if we look honestly at these giants of faith. The details of town, family life, religion and politics are convincingly told, and the struggles of faithful followers to recognize spiritual guidance, remain true to what they’ve learned while advancing an unseen kingdom are powerfully convincing. The novel balances Peter’s adherence to goals of “the secret teaching of Yeshua” with Paul’s earthly determination to spread the good news of the kingdom far and wide. A kingdom that is simultaneously not of this world, yet built from people in this world, invites a certain dichotomy; a kingdom that is both “within you” and yet to come, that is both preached abroad and experienced alone. There’s a nice balance between Greek philosophy, Jewish faith and Christian tradition in the novel, and a fascinating sense of there being nothing new under the sun as New Age “reality is not real” becomes a touchstone of Peter’s musings. I really enjoyed the novel for its authentic historical feel and its insight into Peter and Paul’s lives and motivations. Fascinating internal dialog leads to an intriguing mix of present and past tense writing, and creates a deeply involving narrative with no preachiness in its somewhat untraditional interpretations. The result is a tale of history with great characters, great plot, interesting faith, and deep roots in philosophy.
Disclosure: I learned when this book was being offered free and bought a copy.