Hear No Evil - Book Review

Hear No Evil:  My Story of Innocence, Music, and the Holy Ghost by Matthew Paul Turner (Waterbrook Press)

Matthew Paul Turner and I lived parallel lives--up to that point where he went off to college and got the degree that I probably should have had, and my dream job in the music business.  Well, it was the Christian music business, which wasn't part of my dream job, but there you go.  Turner is the popular blogger, Christian critic, author, and cultural commentator who writes, comments, critiques and sometimes snarks a bit at www.jesusneedsnewpr.com.  Last year a friend sent me Turner's book "Churched," a compilation of essays on growing up as a fundamentalist Baptist.  I was thrilled when I saw Hear No Evil was in print, but it took me a while to get to it.  It was worth the wait.  Hear No Evil essentially chronicles Turner's life story in essays-- as his life relates to music, that is.  I couldn't put it down, to be honest.  Each essay draws the reader closer and closer to Turner's present, a present that he hints at in the "Overture," and one that is markedly different from his fundamentalist beginnings.  From his triumph as a would-be Christian singer as a child, to unhealthy obsessions with Sandi Patty and Amy Grant, Turner's musical journey is a quirky, sweet and enjoyable trip.  What lies beneath each step of the journey is the story of Turner's faith--a faith that has been tried, tested, questioned and finally embraced in strange, Spirit-filled ways.  When I read Turner's stories, I can see the hope and the grace in my own.  We are not defined by our past (thank God), but it informs and forms us.  What Turner does in Hear No Evil is to take the very best of what has formed him and celebrate it.  The soundtrack of his life is definitely music to the ears.  I highly recommend Hear No Evil.  It's the kind of book that could definitely bridge the gap between Christians and everyone else---so if you are a "recovering Christian," like I am, make this a gift for all those non-Christian friends of yours who don't get you and your faith. 


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