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Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Point: The Redemption of Oban Ironbout

William E. Jefferson is a message maker, artfully weaving words of truth.  Jefferson invites you to journey with him, to explore the world of Estillyen.  Jefferson holds an MTh in Theology and Media from the University of Edinburgh and an MA in Communications from Wheaton Graduate School.

Jefferson attempts to "create imaginative fiction which frames compelling truth".  "Estillyen is a world where truth and life conquer lies and death."
(Quotes taken from the Estillyen website HERE.)

Searching for peace and inspiration, Hollie and Goodwin Macbreeze travel to the Isle of Estillyen - a distant harbor known for bringing ancient words of worth to the present.  Their lives become unexpectedly and inseparably intertwined with the reclusive Oban Ironbout - and a mystery from the past that will transform them all. 

It is a tale of pain...and redemption.

My Thoughts:
The Point is not a quick read.  While a work of fiction, the book's style is allegorical with the flavors of John Bunyan and C.S. Lewis.  Jefferson's book is one to take in slowly and contemplate.  The story is largely dialogue driven. And the surprising twist at the end is one you won't see coming!
I don't typically highlight my fiction books, but there were many places in The Point that I did.  Take this portion for example:
"Estillyen is an ancient word for still...On Estillyen, the whole idea is about stilling, contemplation, reflection.  Those message makers are very much a mind of mission, they are.  They see words from ancient paths as pillars for the present...The further you go, the less you'll have and the more you'll find...That's the ticket, by Job - 'In this life look fr peace, not paradise...Christ was the medium and message of God...Something will consume you, even i it appears to be nothing, and that nothing will be the something."
Those portions and many more were taken from just the first chapter.
Scattered throughout the book are the "readings" that Hollie and Goodwin attend while visiting the metophorical Isle of Estillyen.  I particularly loved these portions.  Jefferson does an excellent job of presenting key portions of Scripture in telling the redemption story of the Bible.  Particularly intriguing is the story aspect of these readings and the way Jefferson puts on display satan's role in opposing God's truth.
Take this portion from one reading as an comes from the first reading presented titled "Did God Really Say?", which covers Genesis 3:1-5:
"We must trust beyond our knowing...God chooses to reveal what He reveals; the drama is His.  Beyond knowing are God's reasons for the mysterious moves He makes.  This, however, is exceedingly good, not bad."
There is a companion book to The Point titled Redemption:  Twelve Readings from the Monks of Estillyen.  In Redemption, the reader gets the twelve readings in their entirety, while in The Point, the readings are abbreviated.
Jefferson through his gift of writing has given us a remarkable work that clearly is centered on the person of Jesus Christ - the Word made flesh.  He shares through Oban's story of coming back to God the amazing story of the Bible which is redemption and abundant life offered in Christ and the idea that "Words matter...some forevermore."


Part One

Part Two

Thank you Julie Busteed with Handlebar for sending me the complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of this review!  This is a rich book that I highly recommend!



Keri said...

Wow, what a great review. The Point is a wonderful book--not at all your typical Christian novel. I think readers who typically prefer non-fiction and theology will love this book.
We're going to share your review on the Estillyen Facebook page--please come by and learn more about both books.

Unknown said...

Jenifer, what an insightful, perceptive review. Brilliant.

I/we are very grateful. I'll forward this to the Monks of Estillyen.

Blessings, W.E.J