Title: Heaven: Our Enduring Fascination with the Afterlife
Author: Lisa MIller
Release Date: March 23, 2010
Rating: 4 out of 5
Lisa Miller is the religion editor for Newsweek, and in this book she explores the meaning of heaven. She looks at different sources of our interpretations, from religious doctrine to popular culture. Focusing on Judaism, Christianity and Islam, Miller attempts to discover what people mean when they say they believe in heaven.
I’ve always been interested in studying the beliefs of different religions, so I thought Heaven sounded fascinating. That thought was confirmed when, in the first few pages of the book, Miller admits that she doesn’t know what to think about heaven and is embarking on this journey along with the reader. With that kind of investment in the topic, I immediately knew that Miller was going to write a quality book.
Miller draws on an impressive number of sources in order to give the reader the broadest view possible on the topic. Between countless hours spent researching and the insightful interviews she conducts with people who represent various religious persuasions, this really is a comprehensive view of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim conceptions of heaven, from their founding dates to the present.
The book is also very well-written. Despite the fact that it’s about a semi-heavy topic and is non-fiction book, it never drags or is dry. Miller’s prose is engaging and keeps the reader interested in the story she’s telling. The book is organized such that it’s easy to follow in bite sized pieces. It’s a book that can easily be read and digested in one sitting or in twenty.
I really enjoyed Heaven and feel like it has reignited my interest in studying other religions. Miller writes about her topic in clear, crisp prose. Her insights are rewarding and the book as a whole is engaging. Even if you’re not a fan of non-fiction, if you’re interested in the topic, you’ll likely enjoy this book.