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The Shack (2008)

by William P. Young

Other authors: Brad Cummings, Wayne Jacobsen

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
13,300554356 (3.43)310
Mackenzie Allen Phillips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack's world forever. In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant, "The Shack" wrestles with the timeless question, "Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?" The answers Mack gets will astound you and perhaps transform you as much as it did him.… (more)
  1. 40
    Dinner with a Perfect Stranger by David Gregory (soflbooks)
    soflbooks: David Gregory's short story about a man who accepts a dinner invitation with Jesus is better written than The Shack and sticks to evangelical theology.
  2. 10
    Thrones For The Innocent by C. W. Kesting (Desmorph)
    Desmorph: Thrones for the Innocent is a stunning compliment to The Shack. It addresses the metaphysical mysteries of ontology and theology without preaching. Where The Shack speaks directly to and about God and the Christian Trinity; Thrones is both subliminal and aggressive. Thrones helped me deal with the frustration I felt in my own heart about the paradox of the existence of evil and and all-loving all-powerful Creator. Thrones is very spiritual and yet avoids struggling with the convolution of structured religion. it should raise some eyebrows as well as quiet some tortured hearts.… (more)
  3. 10
    Rooms by James L. Rubart (paulstalder)
    paulstalder: ähnliche Handlung: Ein Mann kommt in ein Haus und kommt mit seiner Vergangenheit ins Reine
  4. 00
    Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Another story of searching for meaning after personal tragedy and questioning why bad things happen.
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» See also 310 mentions

English (533)  German (6)  Portuguese (Brazil) (5)  Portuguese (Portugal) (3)  Spanish (2)  Portuguese (1)  Dutch (1)  French (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (553)
Showing 1-5 of 533 (next | show all)
I originally didn't intend to read this book, based on some reviews I'd read. But our friends loaned it to me and I read it anyway. And I'm glad I did. There were some parts at the beginning that were a bit emotionally intense to the point of being uncomfortable, but by and large it was enjoyable to read, and moving. ( )
  MarkLacy | May 29, 2022 |
The Shack is one of those books that ended up being far more than what I was expecting, although I have to admit that precisely what I was expecting, I'm not sure. I knew that this book was billed as Christian literature, but I also knew that it was highly controversial. However, I wasn't entirely certain whether it had caused upheaval in non-Christian or Christian circles. Turns out it's apparently both, which in my estimation means that it has done a good job of hitting its mark. If both sides are simultaneously criticizing and loving it, then the book has struck a good balance in my opinion.

I've mentioned several times in my reviews of other “Christian” books that in spite of being a Christian myself, nothing will turn me off faster than a book that is preachy, which is why I approached The Shack with a certain degree of caution. What I found in it was something that I never would have imagined. It is a deeply moving, spiritual story of a man seeking answers to some very tough questions. I wouldn't call it a religious book, because it doesn't seek to moralize. It is more of a journey in faith to a richer understanding of who and what God is and is not, and how God relates to the human race as a whole. I know that it has challenged me to think of God in a new way which is something that I've been trying to do for a while now, but I often find myself being held back by the strictures of religion. The story in The Shack succeeds in breaking down those barriers to give a look at a God who many people, Christian or not, may never have encountered or even considered. The message here is one of a God of love, gentleness, patience, and goodness, rather than one who is angry, wrathful and ready to smite us at the slightest provocation.

As I read The Shack, I sometimes found myself trying to label it, but it doesn't fit neatly into any one category. It contained elements of apologetics and elements of allegory, but it is difficult to stamp it as having been born out of any one literary device. Instead it is very much rooted in the author's own faith journey. The beginning and ending chapters, as well as the foreword and after words give the uncanny feel of a non-fiction story. It is definitely written in a more factual tone and style. I'm apparently not the only reader who wondered if Mack was a real person who actually had experienced the events detailed in the book. The author states elsewhere that The Shack is a work of fiction, but rightly implies that there is a little bit of Mack in all of us. Pretty much anyone who has experienced difficult or life-changing circumstances or have struggled with their faith could be a Mack.

The Shack definitely left me with a great deal of food for thought. I'm not sure that I'm even doing it justice in my review, because there are so many wonderful messages to be gleaned from its pages that I have a feeling I'll be thinking about it for a long time to come. I loved the imagery in the story. It spoke volumes to me, as did Mack's struggles with understanding God and His mysterious ways. I, without a doubt, related to him in a very profound way. The only reason I didn't give this book the full five stars is because I felt like it was a bit slow in places and the philosophy, no matter how hard I tried to understand, occasionally eluded me. However, I'm willing to admit that when this happened perhaps my spirit just wasn't ready for that particular message yet. The rest of it though made absolute perfect sense. The Shack is definitely a book that will be worth coming back to over and over, and I'm sure each time I'll find something new and exciting within its pages. There are many spiritual truths housed in this simple yet elegant story that I know I will need to be reminded of time and time again which is why it is going on my keeper shelf. I highly recommend The Shack to anyone who wants to be challenged in their faith and understanding of God or anyone who might be looking for a different interpretation of God than what many churches are offering today. ( )
  mom2lnb | May 12, 2022 |
Ficção americana
  Lenisilva | Apr 12, 2022 |
I started this book thinking it was a murder mystery. I have no idea where I got that idea but boy was I wrong. I'm not religious or spiritual in any way so when God appeared all of a sudden I was taken aback and super skeptical. However, I'm not one to quit on a book and it wasn't a hard read. There were areas that I scoffed at but also some where I thought "gee, if people who were super religious read this with an open mind, I wonder if they'd be a bit more chill (then I read some of the reviews and LOL'd because those who are hardcore don't seem open to new ideas of God).

My favourite part was when God said he wasn't a fan of institutions "As well-intentioned as it might be you know that religious machinery can chew up people!...Like I said, I don't create institutions, that's an occupation for those who want to play God. So no, I'm not too big on religion."

This book portrayed what I imagine religion should be --non-institutional and all encompassing love of everyone, no matter their race, creed, sexual orientation, etc.

Over and out to more books! ( )
  Nikki.Owens | Mar 25, 2022 |
I had two separate friends recommend The Shack by William P. Young so I got myself on the waiting list at the library and waited anxiously for my name to come up. Then I started to read it. I tried, really I did. I got through the foreword, chapters 1 and 2 and made it through part of chapter 3 before I gave up. The writing drove me so crazy I couldn't make myself care enough about what happened to the characters to finish the book. Throughout the portion of the book I finished, the writer kept referring to The Great Sadness (complete with italics and capitalization) that he was going to tell us about -- soon, but not now, of course. From the small portion that I finished, it just seemed like bad writing to me. If you've read the book and enjoyed it, please help me understand why this book is getting such great reviews. ( )
  skayw | Mar 20, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 533 (next | show all)
Young's too-weird-for-the-pulpit thoughts about how Adam's rib and the female uterus form a "circle of relationship" have the appeal of knobby heirloom-produce in a world where much religion arrives vacuum-packed. His theories—how to believe in Adam while supporting particle-physics research; why the Lord is OK with your preference for lewd funk more than staid church music—accomplish what mainstream faiths tend to fail at: connecting recondite doctrine to the tastes, rhythms, and mores of modern life. ... And though the novel, as a novel, is a sinner's distance from perfection, it's an eloquent reminder that, for those who give some faith and effort to the writing craft, there is, even today, the chance to touch and heal enough strangers to work a little miracle.
added by eromsted | editSlate, Nathan Heller (Jun 3, 2010)
 
Would I recommend this book? No, I would not. It is full of theological problems as well as an irreverent and casual attitude toward God. Yes, there are nice things in it and people might even be helped by the book. But so what? There are some nice things in Mormonism, too. Should we encourage people to read the Book of Mormon because Mormonism might help someone feel better? Not at all.

Sadly, experience has shown me that most Christians aren't interested in biblical fidelity. No, I'm not talking about biblical nit-picking. I'm talking about fidelity to the revealed word of God to the point where we don't contradict what is plainly stated in scripture!

We Christians should regard the word of God as the final authority on all things, and any supposed accounts of actual occurrences should be compared to scripture, not our feelings, wants, and desires. In the case of The Shack, the book falls woefully short of scriptural truth in many important areas and has the strong ability to mislead people regarding God's nature, work, and plan for us.

Again, I do not recommend it.
 
Focusing on just three of the subjects William
Young discusses in The Shack, we’ve seen that
errors abound. He presents a false view of God
and one that may well be described as heretical. He downplays the importance and uniqueness of the Bible, subjugating it or making it equal to other forms of subjective revelation. He misrepresents redemption and salvation, opening the door to the possibility of salvation outside of the completed work of Jesus Christ on the cross. We are left with an unbiblical understanding of the persons and nature of God and of His work in this world.
 

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Young, William P.Authorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cummings, Bradsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wayne Jacobsensecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Calado, AlvesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Downes, BobbyCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Görden, ThomasÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Görden, ThomasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ghiglieri, MarisaCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mueller, RogerNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rodriguez, FrankReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Steck, JohannesSprechersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
This story was written for my children:

Chad-the Gentle Deep,
Nicholas-the Tender Explorer,
Andrew-the Kindhearted Affection,
Amy-the Joyful Knower,
Alexandra (Lexi)-the Shining Power,
Matthew-the Becoming Wonder
And dedicated first, to:

Kim, my Beloved, thank you for saving my life.
And second, to:

"...All us stumblers who believe Love rules. Stand up and let it shine."
First words
Foreword:

Who wouldn't be skeptical when a man claims to have spent an entire weekend with God, in a shack no less?
March unleashed a torrent of rainfall after an abnormally dry winter.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Mackenzie Allen Phillips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack's world forever. In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant, "The Shack" wrestles with the timeless question, "Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?" The answers Mack gets will astound you and perhaps transform you as much as it did him.

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Book description
Mackenzie Allen Philips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation, and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his "Great Sadness," Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend.

Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack's world forever.

In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant The Shack wrestles with the timeless question, "Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?" The answers Mack gets will astound you and perhaps transform you as much as it did him. You'll want everyone you know to read this book!
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Hachette Book Group

6 editions of this book were published by Hachette Book Group.

Editions: 0964729237, 0964729245, 0964729261, 0964729288, 1935170007, 1600246869

 

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