Friday, February 11, 2011

Book Review: The Faith of Ronald Reagan

Best-selling author Mary Beth Brown has written a warm tribute to America's fortieth president, Ronald Reagan, entitled simply, The Faith of Ronald Reagan.  In the book's introduction, Brown pulls no punches about her primary goal for the work:

The purpose of this book, then, is to help individuals who are studying Ronald Reagan to learn that his Christian faith was what accounted for his success. 

Brown makes good on her promise, too.  In fact, if I were a casual reader with no particular devotion to Christ, I would likely be annoyed at best after reading this book.  Scripture passages and Biblical themes abound, many of which are pulled from Reagan's own speeches or letters. 

Brown leads the reader on a journey from Reagan's humble birth and upbringing all the way to his death on June 5, 2004.  She includes a treasury of Reagan quotations--exceprts from his handwritten letters, portions from his autobiographies, snippets from important speeches he delivered, and interviews by those closest to him.

Brown's writing style seems overly simplistic at times, but the nature of the book lends itself well to such a style.  She restates eagerly and often the theme of her book, in varied fashions.  Reagan firmly believed that the sovereign God ruled in his everyday life, and his mission was to fulfill God's plan for him, with God's grace and help.  While some deem this redundant, I thought it suited her purpose just fine.  It never hurts to be reminded of Truth! 

I kept looking and waiting for Reagan's salvation experience and never saw it.  Perhaps Brown thought it unnecessary to include the actual circumstances surrounding the President's conversion.  I was disappointed by that.

I found it interesting that Brown includes the five eulogies given at President Reagan's funeral--by his son Michael, his daughter Patti Davis, Margaret Thatcher, President George H.W. Bush, and President George W. Bush.  

I'd give The Faith of Ronald Reagan 4 of 5 stars.  It was an inspiring read!

Disclaimer:  I received a copy of this book in exchange for honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.