The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber @canongatebooks

Peter is sent on a mission to spread the word from his book of Strange New Things. He has to leave his wife, Beatrice, at home as the company cannot afford to send them both. This trip of a lifetime throws Peter into a completely new world as he integrates himself with the natives to help spread the word of the bible.

This book, and Peter’s mission, is not what you’d first expect. It isn’t about taking the bible to another planet and setting up a church. It’s about the challenges of learning a new language, of living in adverse conditions and maintaining a marriage with minimal contact. Peter finds himself drifting away from the life he knew as he integrates with the locals whilst Beatrice faces her own troubles back home. Both find themselves in unrecognisable surroundings without the marital support they are accustomed to.

References to the past show a different side of Peter before he found Beatrice and the bible. This made him much more relatable than thinking he had been a good Christian all his life. He had seen the worst of this world before turning himself around and helping others. The other characters who have travelled over with him have a similar troubled background making you wonder what the strict section criteria was really aiming for. Peter had been through so much on the lead up to the trip, but nothing can prepare him for what he faces whilst there. He didn’t realise the strain it would put on his marriage, the sacrifices he would need to make, or how much the natives would change him as a person.

You can buy the book here: The Book of Strange New Things

Amazon links are affiliate links with payments contributing to running the blog.

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