Tell it Slant | Eugene H. Peterson

Eugene Peterson’s latest series of books have been the perfect blend of theology and spiritual formation. Unfortunately, this book lacked some of the quality that marked first three in the series. Here’s why:

  • He’s more dependent on his sources in this volume (N. T. Wright, Kenneth Bailey, etc). If you’ve read Bailey in particular, Peterson’s book becomes superfluous.
  • The book is under-edited. Peterson’s prose is unique, but left to itself it can become repetitious. One time I thought I had lost my place in the book only to find that he repeated the same phrase verbatim from a couple pages back.
  • While the form of the book was the same as the earlier one, but the content felt lacking. Maybe because the parables and prayers of Jesus are so well known, it was hard for Peterson to bring new insights to life.

It’s tough to write a review like this for Peterson—he’s one of my favourite authors. Still, just like the best goalie can let in a few too many pucks on any given night (a better but more obscure metaphor: even GSP can get TKO’d by Serra), the best authors can put up the occasional lackluster performance.

I’ll be looking forward to volume 5.

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