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Has anyone read this yet? I really enjoyed the sample, but I want to get some other impressions before I plunk down $9.99 on it.

The Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner's Semester at America's Holiest University


Basically, the author was a Brown University student who decided to spend a semester "undercover" at Liberty University, an evangelical school founded by the Rev. Jerry Falwell.

I downloaded the sample for Kindle last night and it's really fantastic so far. Some of the rules at Liberty are absolutely shocking. For example, you get fined $50 (I think) if you watch or are caught in possession of an R-Rated movie.

The Kindle version has an exclusive Bible quiz at the end. Could be fun for some of you folks in the One Year Bible book klub.

If anyone else has read this, please post your thoughts. You know how it is with some books. They start off strongly and then fizzle out. So, I want to make sure this is really worth the asking price. After all, a man and his money are not easily parted. 8)

Thanks.
 

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Oh, this is the book that AJ Jacobs' assistant wrote! I've read several of AJ's books - most recently The Year of Living Biblically. AJ Jacobs is a very funny guy, he's related to someone who goes to school with my kids and I've seen him speak at an assembly there. Anyway, in the book I just read, AJ hired an intern, because he needed a slave (he was trying to live the way people in the bible lived... you really must read the book...). The author of The Unlikely Disciple is the intern :) I've been meaning to put his book on my wishlist so thanks for mentioning it.
 

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This book sounds fascinating. It's going on my to-read list for sure!
 

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Oops - meant to request a sample but I accidentally bought it! One-click is dangerous, lol!

Oh, well. I like the bit that I've read so far, so I probably would have bought it at some point.  :)

Hey, this is the first book I've noticed that has chapter markers on the progress bar!
 

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I just finished this book and couldn't put it down. It was a funny, thoughtful, honest story about Kevin Roose, who transfers from Brown University to Liberty University for a semester to draw his own conclusions about fundamental evangelical Christians and to write about his experiences after he returns to Brown as journalism major. He learns some important life lessons, forms close friendships that transcend his experience at Liberty and gains a better appreciation for his own beliefs as well as those of the Liberty students and faculty. The book is never condescending but does take a critical look at Jerry Falwell and the "Liberty" and "Thomas Road Baptist" experience. Kevin Roose is an exceptional writer and gives readers an inside look at the joys and challenges that are part of Liberty life. I highly recommend it!
 

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I read it last weekend, but I might not be the best one to judge it by. 

I live in Lynchburg.  At the time Kevin wrote this, both my children were attending Liberty.  So the terms & places and many of the events were very familiar to me. 

I thought it was well-written & it held my interest throughout the book.  There were parts that made me laugh, and parts that made me cry.  And definitely parts that were distressing.  I finished it in one day because I was anxious to find out the total picture of his experience. 







 

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I downloaded a sample of this book last evening and am enjoying it so far. It's probably too much to hope that the price will come down soon so I'm not sure if I'll wait and watch the price or go ahead and buy it.

 

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Discussion Starter #9
I just finished this book, and I can say without reservation that it's absolutely fantastic.

I found it ironic that
the Liberty kids were more open in the end about Kevin's differences than Kevin's family and secular friends were about Liberty
.

BTW, in case anyone is interested, the Nathaniel Hawthorne story mentioned in the book - The Blithedale Romance - is available for free on Feedbooks (and I assume other sites too).

http://www.feedbooks.com/book/1547

Also, here is
Jerry Falwell's final print interview, conducted by the author of this book, Kevin Roose
. (POSSIBLE SPOILER LINK)

Finally, here is Liberty University's response to the book. (POSSIBLE SPOILER LINK)

Edit: Actually, it seems that
Falwell, Jr. initially went back on his word by pulling the book from the Liberty store, but it's back now with a disclaimer
. (POSSIBLE SPOILER LINK)
 

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webhill said:
Oh, this is the book that AJ Jacobs' assistant wrote! I've read several of AJ's books - most recently The Year of Living Biblically. AJ Jacobs is a very funny guy, he's related to someone who goes to school with my kids and I've seen him speak at an assembly there. Anyway, in the book I just read, AJ hired an intern, because he needed a slave (he was trying to live the way people in the bible lived... you really must read the book...). The author of The Unlikely Disciple is the intern :) I've been meaning to put his book on my wishlist so thanks for mentioning it.
A. J. Jacobs also write The Know-It-All, an interesting and amusing account of his resolution to read the whole of the Encyclopedia Brittanica.

patrisha
 

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lynninva said:
I read it last weekend, but I might not be the best one to judge it by.

I live in Lynchburg. At the time Kevin wrote this, both my children were attending Liberty. So the terms & places and many of the events were very familiar to me.

I thought it was well-written & it held my interest throughout the book. There were parts that made me laugh, and parts that made me cry. And definitely parts that were distressing. I finished it in one day because I was anxious to find out the total picture of his experience.
I may have to break my no $9.99 book pledge (not that it would be the first time) as the oldest granddaughter wants to go to Liberty and I'd like to read something that gives me some insight. I'm glad to hear from someone who has first hand knowledge of Liberty who has read the book. (The only first hand experience we have with Lynchburg is that my husband has run the Lynchburg 10 miler twice. It finished going straight up hill by the high school with a nurse stationed halfway up the hill.

Betsy
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
I may have to break my no $9.99 book pledge
It is rare for me to buy a $9.99 book too, but I have on occasion. When it's worth it, I go for it. The Unlikely Disciple is definitely worth it.

Plus, waiting for a price drop can sometimes come back to bite you. For example, I should have gotten The Film Club for $9.99, but I waited and now it's $13. :(
 

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I was in the local Barnes & Noble today & saw a sign promoting a book signing with Kevin Roose on April 10 (yesterday).

And as much as I love my Kindle, it just hit me:  it doesn't work for getting an author's autograph.

Maybe I should ask the Accessory board people if they have found a solution for this?
 

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lynninva said:
I was in the local Barnes & Noble today & saw a sign promoting a book signing with Kevin Roose on April 10 (yesterday).

And as much as I love my Kindle, it just hit me: it doesn't work for getting an author's autograph.

Maybe I should ask the Accessory board people if they have found a solution for this?
Have the author sign a skin or sign a blank piece of paper that you later scan and load into your Kindle?
 

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lynninva said:
I was in the local Barnes & Noble today & saw a sign promoting a book signing with Kevin Roose on April 10 (yesterday).

And as much as I love my Kindle, it just hit me: it doesn't work for getting an author's autograph.

Maybe I should ask the Accessory board people if they have found a solution for this?
We had someone here (can't remember who) who had her favorite author sign her Kindle at a book signing. She posted a picture of it. Another member took pictures of the autographed books he had from a favorite author, and turned the pictures into screensavers.

If I liked a book enough to get an author to sign it, I'd probably invest in a paper copy for the archive and a Kindle copy to actually read. In fact, I just bought a paper version and Kindle version of a book I know I'm going to love (I haven't even read it. LOL). I was thinking of writing the author (she lives in England so no book signing here in the US anytime soon) and asking her to autograph a label, which I can paste in the front of the book. Hopefully she won't think I'm too wacky of a fan.

L
 
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