BOOK REVIEW: The Outlaw Preacher by John W. Andrews

Ride from darkness to light with the legendary "Nine Ball" of the notorious Doomsayer's Motorcycle Club as evil relentlessly pursues his soul. Hang on from the gates of Folsom prison to the streets of Southern California as this outlaw biker struggles to break free from his life as a violent marauder to answer the call of God. Once you're in there's no turning back so grab your helmet, you'll need it!

Let's just get this out of the way, when Ma tells you that you have to read a book - you read the book.  I didn't have time to read a non-review book.  I was drowning in review books.  I was behind on reading the books.  But Ma said it, and amazingly enough I did it (don't get use to it Ma!).  And I'm so glad I did.  Don't get me wrong, it wasn't perfect but oh the biscuits it was good.  'The Outlaw Preacher' was just that, a book about an ex-con biker outlaw who found Christ and stood out on faith to attempt to reform his life and to show the love of Christ to those around him.  There were a couple of quotes (one longer than just a phrase) that I carried away with me.  One about being a Christian and one just about life.  

Some Christians pepper their conversations with words like 'blessing' and 'prayer' as verbal trial balloons.  Other Christians jump on those words like storm shelters in a tornado.  It's code for 'we're in this together,' and it's comforting.  Non-believers just ignore them completely, which gives them away every time.
Oh my grits and gravy I never thought about it like this.  I'm not one to throw out blessing or prayer willy nilly like a condiment or spice to my conversation but I know people who do.  This small passage right at the beginning of the book (page 22 to be exact) started me down a pretty introspective path.  There was another passage just a wee bit further in that made me think for a moment and reminded me why I have a 5 year plan.
A man's life must be more than a commute where talk radio personalities become intimate friends and thoughts and passions are controlled by news, weather and sports.
Obviously, I really liked this book.  There were so many offbeat spunky thoughts that the man had and openly shared that gave me pause to think and even made me chuckle.   While the book was entertaining, engaging, and spiritually refreshing there were things that I truly struggled with.  The person changes (i.e. first person to third person) sometimes in the same scene made my head whirl a minute.  I'm going to be spoiler-y for a minute and talk about his dear friend that he stayed with after his release.  I feel like the set-up was there about how his friend was very anti-faith but then his near instant conversion.  I feel like there were things missing there.  I don't doubt that when the spirit moves the right person to speak the right truth at the right time anything is possible but I feel like it felt a bit um, (struggling with words here) 'too easy'.  I'm sure it wasn't but I couldn't connect to the moment which led to it feeling off.  There were lots of amazing moments that I felt disconnected from and I hate to say it but could have been way more impactfull with a bit more editing direction.  Kinda like my posts!

That being said, I still LOVED this book.  (Yes Ma, thank you.) The knowledge that it will be a minute or million before I can squeeze in another non-review book is hard.  I want to finish the series and when I checked out the author's website (linked below) there's a fourth book already being worked on.  If you are open to stories of redemption, faith, and a fresh take on the Holy Spirit as told by an every day person living the life and facing the struggles this is the book for you.

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The Outlaw Preacher

About John W. Andrews 
 I’m supposed to write something about myself so you know who’s behind The Outlaw Preacher books.  It’s a little weird writing about myself, I don’t enjoy doing it but I wanted you to know who wrote your books and why.  So, here goes:  I’m a husband, a son, a dad, a grandpa, a friend, a pastor and Nomad with The Prophets MC in Southern California and now Michigan.

Website | Goodreads

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