Thursday, November 1, 2012

Book Review: Understanding World Religions in 15 Minutes A Day by Garry R. Morgan

This is a basic guide to the major world religions - their history, development, and current beliefs and practices from Christian publisher Bethany House and author Garry R. Morgan.  All of the major belief systems and many of those that are not as widely known are covered.  Each chapter is 3-4 pages long and can be read quickly.  Obviously, each religion is only covered briefly and basically, so this isn't an in-depth exploration of religion, but more of a basic overview, appropriate for the lay reader. 

Morgan does an excellent job of covering each religion in a way that gives the reader a good understanding of the religion's basic tenets.  He also succeeds in writing in such a way that those who are not religious experts will understand.  I appreciated the way he kept his chapters brief, yet covered all the basics.  I think his writing style will appeal to a wide audience.  Those who are experts in world religions may find the information too basic, but I think the average reader will find them helpful and informative.  The book would also make a great discussion tool for a small group or even a youth group.  I think the writing has appeal for adults as well as teenagers.

Entertainment Value
I'm very interested in world religions and knowing what others believe and why, so this one fascinated me.  The format made it easy to digest in small amounts - I could read a chapter or two every night without any problem.  I think whether or not you'll be entertained by this book really depends on two things: your prior knowledge of world religions and your interest in world religions.  If you're not interested in learning about other religions or any religions, you're not going to find this interesting.  If you already know a great deal about world religions, you're probably also going to be bored, as most of the information contained is fairly basic.  But if you're just looking for a refresher on the big ones or if you're looking for the first time into some of the more obscure ones, this one is perfect.

A big thanks to Bethany House for sending me this to review.

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