By Vicky Piggott-Genge
If I’m honest, when I saw the title of this book I was somewhat put off. It made me think that it was going to be just another one of those books that is all fluffy and aimed at making Christian girls feel like princesses. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s just not me really. However, Babe's Bible WAS NOT like that at all. In fact the story that unfolded, and the way in which it unfolded, left your mind in a whirlwind.
The first chapter is a little slow to get started and it was easy to predict what was going to happen. However, half way through the first chapter, when Grace begins to rewrite familiar stories in an unfamiliar way, you are knocked off your guard and the whole thing begins to take over.
It’s not an easy read, in fact, it took me longer than it normally would. This was due to the fact that I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t missing any of the stories that were unfolding. Karen Jones' way of creating stories within stories is brilliantly created. Being allowed to come in and journey with women struggling with faith and their journey in the 21st Century, while being drawn to the same journey with women over 2000 years earlier is crafted beautifully.
The book covers so many themes and issues which, even after huge attempts to break the silence, still remain taboos in the church. Not being embarrassed to deal with infidelity, prostitution, pornography, abortion… the list could go on. Jones deals with each issue with sensitivity and thought; never do you feel as though it’s there because it’s there, she has thoughtfully tackled each issue, and portrays it so honestly through different characters' eyes – and ultimately how the church SHOULD respond to such issues and dilemmas that will undoubtedly appear in our congregations.
Babe's Bible is not for the faint hearted, I’m sure that while reading it you will be shocked by what you are reading, challenged to readdress what you think about certain issues. You will laugh as you recognise people you know, and cry as you discover more about yourself through the eyes of the characters.
All I would say is make sure you take all this in to account before you begin reading, as once you begin you won’t want to stop, but be prepared for an emotional journey.