The Preservationist, by David Maine

Yet another book that Mom sent me a pre-publication copy of months ago that has since become a big seller. That’s happened a whole bunch of times since Mom went to Ingram — I was thinking what a nice thing that’s been, especially since I’ve been reading so much more this year.

Anyway, this is a quick 200-page novelized account of Noah and his family before, during & after the Great Flood. If you’ve read my other most recent posts, you’ll notice a theme here of fictionalized accounts of bible stories. Not sure why that’s happening. Maybe all the red state influence. I think I’m going to take a break on them for a while, although I’m carrying around A History of God by Karen Armstong like I’m actually going to read it this time. I think maybe I’m trying to figure some things out. Who knows.

So. The Preservationist is an okay book — great story to start from, obviously — but pretty boring, I thought. Didn’t get a lot of insight or enjoyment from it, which doesn’t leave a ton. I thought that it did do a great job of humanizing a series of events and set of people that we generally think about pretty uncritically.

It does highlight a theme that a friend of mine (BJ Fogg, a professor at Stanford) talks about all the time: stories are maybe the natural unit of human existence. Talk with someone for a while — and what you’ll invariably remember best are their stories. Challenges, funny times, mundane things too. You’ll tend to forget facts & dates & such, but you’ll almost always remember their stories.

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