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. It's certainly not an apologetic book (as
C.S. Lewis said, one can't always be defending the faith, sometimes
one has to encourage those already converted), but elements of
Christianity do come through (especially Chesterton's sensible view
that your faith should affect every area of your life and outlook
to the world).
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
Chesterton's own description of his book as a ""Nightmare"") until
a very bizarre ending.
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. Lewis's book ""That
Hideous Strength"" (the third book in his space trilogy that
includes ""Perelandra""). Like Lewis's 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.
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.
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