I had the opportunity to read “The Great Good Thing” by Andrew Klavan prior to its official release date and I have to say, I absolutely loved it. The writing itself is phenomenal. The author obviously has a way with the written word and the imagery is wonderful; I could really picture the settings and feel the emotions. There was a chapter focusing on Christmas that I particularly loved because as I read I felt like it was Christmas, right then and there at the end of August, and when I finished the chapter I couldn’t wait for December with all its lights and songs and movies and that lovely Christmas spirit.
Klavan wrote his story in such a way that for me, at least, it was very relatable; he referenced movies and shows and books and songs and places and thoughts and feelings that I myself experienced and remembered. It was a bit like conversing with a friend, reminiscing over favorite songs and sharing memories. At the same time, it is his memoir so of course the content was all his own experiences, completely separate from anything I myself have experienced, which made the story both interesting and entertaining. He tells the reader about his life, growing up as “a secular Jew”; he writes about his family, the neighborhood he grew up in, the places he traveled, the various people and works that influenced his life. And he does so beautifully.
Additionally, he has a sense of humor which I find very enjoyable. I thought I would read this book leisurely over the course of a couple weeks but I ended up finishing it in 3 days, switching back and forth from my phone to my nook and reading on my breaks at work because I didn’t want to put it down. I would honestly recommend this book to pretty much anyone.
If you enjoy books like “Boy” and “Going Solo” by Roald Dahl, “Surprised By Joy” by C.S. Lewis, or “This Boy’s Life” by Tobias Wolff; if you are a lover of literature, radio and film; if you appreciate really good writing; or if you are curious about the story of how “a secular Jew comes to faith in Christ,” you should definitely give this one a try. It will not disappoint.