Friday, July 09, 2010

Booknote: The Quotable Atheist

My review of the book as I posted it on my GoodReads page. I am sharing it because I think the open-minded, skeptical people should have some ammunition in their search for truth.

The Quotable Atheist: Ammunition for Non-Believers, Political Junkies, Gadflies, and Those Generally Hell-BoundThe Quotable Atheist: Ammunition for Non-Believers, Political Junkies, Gadflies, and Those Generally Hell-Bound by Jack Huberman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If you want ammunition to answer the religious zealots and their less than enlightened ilk, look no further. The subtitle of this book is pretty accurate as it will give skeptics, non-believers, etc. plenty to think about and to toss back at those who like to cite verse of whatever their sacred text might be. However, do not think that this is a book of just non-believer quotes. The book does feature quotes by popes, preachers, ministers and other assorted religious leaders as well. The result is that not only do you get a quotations book, but you get a sense of arguments and conversations and debates over time. You also get some pretty interesting quotes from people you might not expect. I personally found a quote by Anton LeVay to be particularly interesting and relevant to our time. You may end up finding something relevant to your experience as well.

Besides the quotes, another strength of the book are the notes from the editor about each personality. There are a lot of people quoted here that I had never heard of before. That is not an obstacle because Mr. Huberman does give pretty good notes on each person. In addition, he often injects a bit of humor into the biographical notes. Sometimes, those little jokes are more entertaining than the quotes. I think non-believers, atheists, agnostics, and other free thinkers and open-minded people will like this book, and they may want to keep a copy handy. As for the religious, if they happen to be of the liberal stripe, they might appreciate it. The close-minded right wingers probably should skip it. OK, they probably should be reading it to expand their mind, but it is know that they would not like anything that could make them think.

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