Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Book Review: Way Below the Angels by Craig Harline

Title: Way Below the Angels: The Pretty Clearly Troubled But Not Even Close to Tragic Confessions of a Real Live Mormon Missionary
Author: Craig Harline
Enjoyment Rating: ****
Source: Digital Copy
Content Alert: Although Harline claims to be way below the angels, this was a clean read

Craig Harline writes about his mission to Belgium in the 1970s. This is a book about a regular boy, with the normal kinds of delusions of grandeur and fits of self-doubt, who goes on a regular mission, where things are boring and hard and he doesn't baptize a lot of people, but he still has a pretty good experience. What I appreciate about Way Below the Angels is the fact that Harline is so normal-- most other missionary narratives I've read have the characters/protagonists converting zillions, or else they end up falling in love with someone or escaping from the mob (or all three). This is a guy whose mission experience was mixed and probably pretty similar to most missionaries' experiences, and I appreciate the honesty with which he tells his story. Also, it's funny, which is always a plus.

1 comment:

Anna said...

Craig is a professor I had at BYU who has become a good friend. And he is just as funny in person as in his book. Clarke served in Sweden and he loved reading this too - he felt it was a really accurate depiction of a mission. That part about his white on white missionary shirt - I was crying from laughing so hard. Great book.