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Cross Roads Paperback – September 3, 2013

4.5 out of 5 stars 1,708 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

One of the most faith-enhancing books I have ever read. Bear Grylls on THE SHACK This book has the potential to do for our generation what John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress did for his. It's that good! Eugene Peterson on THE SHACK This book is speaking loud and clear to a lot of people The Independent on THE SHACK Bunyanesque - bold, imaginative, humane and funny Church Times on THE SHACK Once again we have an interesting depiction of the Trinity but I was really taken by the breaking down of the 'wilderness of his soul' that the lead character experiences whilst in his coma. Certainly one to spark some lively discussions... Together Ruthless Tony spencer rates success by the amount of real estate properties he owns. Charismatic when in need of information, or anything to augment success, he is ruled by the need to increase and maintain his capital. Divorcing and then remarrying his wife only to fully destroy her- physiologically, financially and legally- his only concern is to maintain the upper hand. Yet, there are moments when he succumbs to alcohol and remembers the faults in his actions, the things he has lost. With a second chance, he either has to make right the things he has done , or give someone a chance at a better life. Church of England Newspaper The strength of this novel is its ability to face up to the realities and tragedies of life; as a result, it could be a great book to lend a friend who has given up on faith... If you liked The Shack, you will love this book Christianity Magazine --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Wm. Paul Young was born a Canadian and raised among a Stone Age tribe by his missionary parents in the highlands of former New Guinea. He suffered great loss as a child and young adult and now enjoys the "wastefulness of grace" with his family in the Pacific Northwest.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: FaithWords; Reprint edition (September 3, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1455516023
  • ISBN-13: 978-1455516025
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,708 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
CROSS ROADS...Even Better Than The Shack
Wow!
Stop reading this and go read this book!
If you need more convincing, I'll say a few words about this reading experience. Millions of people enjoyed The Shack for its fresh perspective on God's love and existence in community. I am guessing that even more people will relate to Paul Young's latest.
With incredible insight, which I suspect can only be gained through painful experience, the author takes us into the private world of Tony Spencer. Tony is a shrewd, wealthy businessman, who has ruined so many relationships that he suffers from paranoia. When a near death experience sends Tony into a coma, the story takes us quickly into his inner world. Readers follow Tony's journey into a real land where he meets Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and Papa God. If Paul Young had to face critics of The Shack who took exception to God being portrayed as a black woman, it isn't going to get any better when those folks read CROSS ROADS :)
Like layers of an onion, Tony Spencer's hurts, pains, sins, and corruption are revealed to him, even as he encounters the trinity of God who is intent on bringing wholeness to him. Occasional use of strong language drives home the point i.e. Tony is told, "...you are adopted by Papa God, you are not powerful enough to change that..." p. 199
In a surprising manner, Tony is allowed and enabled to view life through the eyes of others as he is transported back and forth from our world to his own inner world. The story is easy to read and creative. It will pull some tears as well. The book does not directly take on the age old question of why bad things happen to `good' people, but we see characters dealing with Down's Syndrome, cancer, death, betrayal, addiction and the gamut of sins.
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Format: Hardcover
Some years ago I remember Madelene L'Engle, author of A Wrinkle in Time, writing that she generally disliked going to Christian fiction writing conferences, because they contain so little talent and depth. As a rule I avoid the fiction section of Christian bookstores for this same reason, they feel anemic. Thus far I think there is only one exception to this rule. William Paul Young(author of The Shack) just released his second book Cross Roads and though he hasn't yet displayed the prophetic qualities of Lewis, MacDonald or Rebecca Stead(author of When You Reach Me) his writing is certainly unique among Christian authors in the US.

Young departs from most Christian fiction authors by continuing to explore race in our culture, sexism in the church, and in Cross Roads he also explores discrimination young people with Downs syndrome face. He does this with more depth then in the Shack. I think Young can see that US Christians need discipleship in these areas, but I really wish he'd go deeper into the issues. His exploration of each are only side stories to the main plot, which is dominated by an intelligent white male's struggle to grieve loss, forgive himself, and learn to give.

Young also touches on one of the greatest tragedies that US Christians face today: the fragmentation of our society and our resulting lack of community. Young offers us a story of a family created by necessity. A white woman, her daughter in the hospital with slim chances of survival and her son with Downs live with a black woman who has migrated from New Orleans after Katrina. Without each other they couldn't survive, but together they forge a way. Whether Young meant this to be a picture of what the church is supposed to be isn't clear, nevertheless he lifts it up to us an beautiful ideal.
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Format: Hardcover
There are rare fiction writers that change landscapes and create "new normals" of imagination. Paul is one of those writers. A few years ago, I ran into Paul in Portland. He is disarmingly friendly. A friend to everyone he meets. He spends hours and hours after book readings just meeting people. Listening. Hugging. Sometimes crying. He is a rare and special gift. And he writes this way.

Forget Black Friday - this book should be the Christmas present you buy for everyone on your list.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I saw an ad on CNN the day the book was released. Of course, having been thoroughly inspired by "The Shack" I was intrigued and immediately went to Amazon to read some reviews. A couple of reviews said it was "better than 'The Shack.'" I thought, "not possible." So is it better than "The Shack?" Well, that's like saying the Gospel of John is better than the Gospel of Matthew when the truth is that I can't imagine one without the other. (Of course I'm just making a point and not suggesting that Young's books are on a par with Scripture.)

The book starts out a little slow but it's a proper pace as it develops the plot and the characters, especially Tony, the main character. After the first 2 or 3 chapters you become intrigued with the unfolding drama. As the intensity increased I thought, "Oh man, I feel like I need to brace myself for the emotional climax that will surely come." Prepare yourself, you will not be disappointed.

Now some might say that all this emotion stuff is "sappy." That's just a natural human response, a defense mechanism to avoid strong emotion, to try to maintain control, adult composure. I would recommend the opposite. Be the innocent child, let yourself go. Let the author lead you through the story, become vulnerable, "dive into" the main character, (and other characters), become that character vicariously, see things through his eyes as it were. You'll understand the significance of this when you read the book.

For me, one of the most significant chapters was "The War Within," by far the longest chapter. Pay special attention here. Several large theological issues are debated with the cast of characters allied against Tony. I love the way academic stuff is brought to life in a drama such as this.
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