Saturday, December 17, 2011

Book Review: Proverbs Reconstructed

When I saw the book "Proverbs Reconstructed" on the BookSneeze site, I was REALLY excited and eager to review it. I have always been fascinated with Proverbs. From the perspective of it being written by the smartest man that ever lived, to the poetic elements about it, to the vast sum of knowledge contained therein.

This book focuses on that last element, the vast sum of knowledge contained within. In "Proverbs Reconstructed" Gus Dallas endeavored to take this knowledge and organize it in a more effective way. He categorizes each segment of Proverbs into categories- the first four are: Abomination, Adultery, Adversity, Advocate. They are then listed as either "good" or "bad" some categories have both a "good" and "bad" component.

My thoughts:
First, i really liked the idea of this book, and am disappointed that I can't give a better review. I was hoping for a book that I could grab when I'm feeling... say... Angry and look up "Anger" and see the folly of my ways. Well, this goal could be accomplished with this book, I guess. And I will say that having the .mobi version (Kindle)is a good way to purchase this book if you'd like to do so. Each category word is linked so you could reference each word in a super fast, efficient manner.

However, I found this book lacking in several ways. First, the categories listed were just kind of... WEIRD! In addition to the obviously helpful categories there were also ones like, Ear, Bear, Eyes. I guess you could just skip them if you had no use for them. The other thing that really seemed odd and confusing to me was the use of "good" and "bad" as descriptors of each term seemed really random to me and I had a hard time discerning what Mr. Dallas' intentions were in including them. I've settled on the idea that perhaps "good" means praises for doing the right thing, and "bad" means warnings for not doing the right thing? At any rate, I didn't think that was an effective way to sub-categorize the topics.

My final perspective was that I disagreed with the author's perspective that his method of organizing the Proverbs was more effective than Solomon's. That it was too difficult to derive the blessings and wisdom of Proverbs in its original form. My assertion is that this is an incorrect perspective. While Mr. Dallas' attempt to improve on the wisdom of the smartest man that ever lived was a lofty and perhaps noble goal, I would not say that his goal was accomplished. I could easily used free Bible software online to search any term I'm looking for to accomplish the same purpose, without the confusion and bulk of an extra book. Perhaps Solomon actually did know what he was doing when he wrote his beautiful wisdom poetry in a seemingly random way. Perhaps its most usable to us in its original form, flowing and surprising.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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