The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare - The Original Classic Edition. Chesterton G
Kind of weird but worth it – Kingsley Amis (writer of the introduction) says that it was the most thrilling book he has ever read. Chesterton weaves together a combination detective story, wierd dream (Nightmare as he says on his cover page), and social commentary. Its certainly not an apologetic book (as C.S. Lewis said, one cant always be defending the faith, sometimes one has to encourage those already converted), but elements of Christianity do come through (especially Chestertons sensible view that your faith should affect every area of your life and outlook to the world). <p> The hero, Symes (who is called Thursday) is a detective and a Christian who provokes an anarchist and infiltrates a world-wide underground anarchist society. From there, there are many adventures, twists, and turns. This part is very well written. Every new discovery Symes makes literally has you on the edge of your seat. Things become more and more bizarre (right in line with Chestertons own description of his book as a Nightmare) until a very bizarre ending. <p> There is a great deal of symbolism and allegory in the book, which is not clear until at least a third of the way through the book. In this way, the book is similar to C.S. Lewiss book That Hideous Strength (the third book in his space trilogy that includes Perelandra). Like Lewiss book, Thursday starts off very realistic (although with some hints of the bizarre twists to come) and gets more and more strange as the book goes on. <p> Finally, after you read through the book once, think about it and read comments then go back and read it again. As Amis says in his introduction, you can read this book many times and get new things out of it every time.