Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Quotable Chesterton: The Wit and Wisdom of G.K. Chesterton, edited by Kevin Belmonte

This book caught my eye because I had never heard of G.K. Chesterton. I wanted to see what kind of wit and wisdom this man actually possessed.

G.K. Chesterton, I learned, was an English writer from the late 1800s. This book is a collection of quotations he was credited with saying and passages from books that he had written. I expected it to be a short gift book with humorous sayings, but it is actually close to 300 pages long and filled with both heavy and light material. All of the quotes are arranged in alphabetical order, by category. There are many categories, ranging from topics such as Atheism, Democracy, Magic, Responsibility, and Trade Unions. I like that the editor broke the quotes up like this, so if the reader is looking for information on a certain topic, it is all there together.

Honestly, I found this book to be extremely boring. There is a reason that this guy is not better known; he isn't all that special. First of all, a lot of the quotations he coined seem to be more like rants, and they are hard to make sense of. I searched to find a quote that I really liked, but came up short. In fact, I disagreed with several of the quotes, like Chesterton's belief on Darwinism, and one of his quips about education. I suppose you could take quotations from this book to use for a debate in a classroom or in a civic group, but I wouldn't recommend it for leisure reading.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher by participating in the blogger review program from BookSneeze. I did not receive any other compensation. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinion here is my own.

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