Matt Brown’s new book Revolutionaries, with its foreword by 9/11 survivor Sujo John, is a masterful work of history covering more than 2,000 years of the rise of Christianity. Five years in the writing and a lifetime of study, Brown artfully avoids boring the reader by penning short biographical accounts of the leading figures from St. Patrick and his evangelism of Ireland to St. Otto of Bamberg and his mission Poland.
The book is not a 1,000 page encyclopedia of facts but rather a riveting tale, with one story blending seamlessly into the next. In fact, it is all stories, page turning, wonderful stories and then suddenly bam, you have just lived 2,000 years, thank you.
Of course, the sheer breadth of time and distance in this work is breathtaking in its ambition but a spot check of Brown’s accuracy for dates and details holds up remarkably well.
The broad coverage is also the real value of the work. There are things we cannot see when we are too close. There are trends and patterns and re-cycled phenomenon that only appear when studied over centuries and in different parts of the world. This book offers examples of both.
As its title reflects, the biggest surprise is to see how revolutionary and controversial Christianity has actually been throughout history. One might imagine that modern day, secularist, mind control monitors are a new thing. In fact, with rare exceptions, Christianity has always been controversial and under attack. And yet each new generation sees its St.Vincent Ferrer, and each generation usually kills him, as well.
Today’s hysterical media reaction to the Christianity of Sarah Palin and its vulgar abuse of her children is actually quite tame in contrast to past religious political figures who were burned at the stake or slow roasted or as recently as 20th Century Russia, thrown into pits, left to starve themselves to death.
To live at such a rare time, as now, and in such a rare place, as America, where faith can be imbibed so openly is actually the exception, not the rule. One feels soft after reading Matt Brown’s quick, 2,000 year treatise. But one also knows that another revolutionary is living among us and when things are dark enough, his or her bold confrontation of corruption and evil will once more anger and convict and startle the world and there will be one more story for another Matt Brown to someday write.
Order your copy of Revolutionaries at RevolutionariesBook.com. You can also buy the book on Amazon.com and download a free chapter or the whole book for the Amazon Kindle or through the free Kindle app on the iPod Touch and iPhone. This book was provided for review by Skyline Book Publishers.