Monday, August 14, 2017

Book Review: Godless

Godless. (Fatherless #3) James Dobson and Kurt Bruner. 2014. 416 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Veronica's eyes flew open as she felt the rising sun warm her face. Panic forced her upright. "Where are we?" No response. Louder. "Mommy?"

Premise/plot: Godless is the third and final book in the trilogy by James Dobson and Kurt Bruner. (The first two in the series are Fatherless and Childless. The third novel opens in 2044, so two years have passed since the first novel began.)

What would society be like if it was truly godless? The entire series has shown a terrifying future where nothing is wrong because everything is right. It's a world in economic crisis for one thing.

The novel asks: What happens to a society, a civilization, when there are more old people than young people? Who gets what? How are resources shared and divided? In this fictional series, the author imagines that the elderly are manipulated and urged to make the best decision for everyone: to end their lives so that their grown children and grandchildren can benefit financially. Be a blessing for your loved ones: die today! Don't weigh down your loved ones lives with your continued existence! Make one last contribution to society! Be patriotic! Do good for your country, do good for your family!

The result is that medical care is being denied to the elderly. Children are pressuring their parents to transition--to die and leave them everything. Churches are pressuring older members to transition so that the church can have their money and thereby extend their gospel outreach. Politicians are definitely supporting the transition industry and building their campaigns around it.

Imagine this: You're 60+, at home waiting for results from the doctor, someone shows up at your door with the results. But they just don't give you the news, they're there to sell you a solution. Your health is bad. You're being denied coverage or treatment. But there's good news in all of this: you can take control of your diagnosis. Schedule your day to die! Sign up right here, right now and we'll set up your appointment to "transition." You can transition at home even if you'd prefer.

Or imagine this: You're 60+ and have a college-aged grandchild who wants to go to college. Your grandchild "needs" this educational opportunity if they are to succeed in life. The only thing standing in the way of their success, their YOU. If you really love your grandchild, don't you want them to have the best in life even if you're not there to see it?

Godless has many characters. Most of the characters were introduced in the first two books in the series. But this one also focuses in on one pastor and his family as they struggle to do the right thing and stand up against a church board that is pro-transition.

My thoughts: The series has reminded me of Frank Peretti's novels. The ideas are truly terrifying. It isn't just the lack of respect for human life and dignity in regards to how the elderly are treated. (I imagine that the disabled would also be pressured to transition. If you can't work and contribute to society, go ahead and die.)

The breakdown of the family is complete. Adults never marry, never enter monogamous relationships, never learn to love others unconditionally and sacrificially, never have children, never have need to be selfless. The novels do show the other side, however. The "breeder" class where values have not disintegrated and human life is still seen as being in the image of God.

My favorite character was Alex, the pastor of a Colorado church. My least favorite character was Matthew. These two have several conversations throughout the book. Matthew is a tortured soul, chained to his bad decisions past and present. He comes as "Frank" seeking answers to his questions. Not that he's always open to the answers he receives from Alex. But Alex isn't his only counselor.
© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

No comments: