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Book Title: Living Witness|
The author of the book: Jane Haddam
ISBN 13: 9780312380861
Edition: Minotaur Books
Date of issue: April 14th 2009
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 339 KB
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Reader ratings: 5.6
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Jane Haddam's stories featuring Gregor Demarkian add to their plots serious political and cultural issues. Living Witness brings out different opinions on the "right" road relative to these topics. Living Witness focuses on religion, and religion in a small and insular town having to face change from all sides. What is that saying about never discuss politics or religion if you don't want the conversation to tank? Oh Well....
No matter what the topic each person is entitled to their own viewpoint. As long as no one is injured and no crimes are committed. It is true that I am entitled to my opinion, but I am not entitled to dictate what yours should be.
This book zooms in on the perception that anyone disagreeing with what one group of people consider to be Christian beliefs and practices is going to rot in Hell. And of course they are not good Christians, but automatically "Secular Humanists." Which in this story seems to refer to atheists.
Adding or subtracting curriculum that deals with evolution and what some say are Christian beliefs causes anger and violence. Jane Haddam is putting real life forward into her novel. Especially at the time she wrote this, the topic of what to allow to be taught in schools, and also what books could be in schools and libraries, was right on the forefront. In fact this small town is in such bad shape they don't even have a library or access to one. Those children who want to read need to be dogged in their pursuit, or they are out of luck.
What is unfortunate is the portrayal of those that have more right leaning Christian beliefs as ignorant and uneducated "hillbillies." Individuals have different beliefs. Education may shape these beliefs, but many are based on faith. But no matter, each person is entitled (and so on).
The story makes clear what can happen when people feel they can and should impose their beliefs and viewpoints on others. And in this book at least, what can happen when parents fail to comprehend and to teach their children the importance of education. Education is key to our future and the future of our children. The danger is that many of these small town people have struggled in school and are angry with those who do well and have or intend to extend their education. They are not Christians and are uppity.
For this particular area, add to the mix that their lives are in upheaval. They battle with "outsiders" who have taken high-tech jobs and want changes to be made, and their comfort zone (no changes).
Of course Gregor Demarkian shakes things up as usual. And he is also undergoing some shaking up as he is finally marrying Bennis. The parallel is made between this small town and their demand for conformance to specific religious beliefs and the often endearing (and sometimes annoying and intrusive) women in his neighborhood and their demands on himself and Bennis.
Jane Haddam's books tell a story, but always bring up topics that require thought and focus.
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Read information about the authorAka Orania Papazoglou
Jane Haddam (b. 1951) is an American author of mysteries. Born Orania Papazoglou, she worked as a college professor and magazine editor before publishing her Edgar Award–nominated first novel, Sweet, Savage Death, in 1984. This mystery introduced Patience McKenna, a sleuthing scribe who would go on to appear in four more books, including Wicked, Loving Murder (1985) and Rich, Radiant Slaughter (1988).
Not a Creature Was Stirring (1990) introduced Haddam’s best-known character, former FBI agent Gregor Demarkian. The series spans more than twenty novels, many of them holiday-themed, including Murder Superior (1993), Fountain of Death (1995), and Wanting Sheila Dead (2005). Haddam’s most recent novels are Blood in the Water (2012) and Hearts of Sand (2013). Wife of William L DeAndrea.
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