This week the Christian Science Fiction Fantasy group is touring the novel Lost Mission by acclaimed author Athol Dickson.
Not for the first time, my copy is late in arriving and therefore I haven’t read the book. However, not that long ago I discovered a series of podcasts by Fiction Addict, a review site. I’ve enjoyed many hours of interviews with various authors as I’ve walked my dog up and down our country road. One of these interviews took place in September, 2009, with Athol Dickson.
In the interview, Mr. Dickson spoke of his novel, Lost Mission, as magical realism, though the consensus seems to be that it doesn’t fit well into any genre. He uses this label because God is not ordinary. God meets us in supernatural ways, so it is difficult to write a story that involves deep spiritual truth without delving somewhat into this supernatural aspect, or magical realism. Mr. Dickson’s goal is to bring the reader with him in this longing for a glimpse of the supernatural, a longing he believes is universal.
Parables make people think more than if truths are laid out plainly. This requires reading on a deeper level than just the words, causing the story to be mulled over for days afterward. Thus, I understand that Lost Mission will not be a quick read.
Mr. Dickson writes with a deep sense of theme permeating his words. In this novel, he wanted to explore how people can start out doing good things with the best of intentions and wind up doing evil. He also says that people can come at an issue from opposing viewpoints and get so heated that they wind up in the same place–a negative place. Either way, his villains and heroes are not clear cut, but are all portrayed as fully human.
I’m looking forward to reading this novel when it arrives! If you’re interested in listening to the podcast interview, here it is. It’s about 36 minutes long.
Or open iTunes, then search for Fiction Addict under podcasts. You’ll find many other interviews and discussions worth your time.
If you’re wondering what folks who’ve actually read the book thought of it, check out some of these blogs: Brandon Barr, Keanan Brand, Amy Browning, CSFF Blog Tour, Stacey Dale, D. G. D. Davidson, Jeff Draper, April Erwin, Timothy Hicks, Jason Isbell, Becky Jesse, Cris Jesse, Jason Joyner, Julie, Carol Keen, Krystine Kercher, Dawn King, Rebecca LuElla Miller, New Authors Fellowship, John W. Otte, Donita K. Paul, Crista Richey, Chawna Schroeder, James Somers, Steve Trower, Fred Warren, Phyllis Wheeler, KM Wilsher
Athol Dickson says
Valerie, I'm glad you found that conversation with Tim George interesting. I remember it well. Tim asks great questions, and I enjoyed digging into the power and the possibilities of fiction with him. Thanks for posting the link here on your blog. And by the way, I love your blog's banner photo of the woods. Mysterious and beautiful…like God!
Thanks for stopping by, Athol. My daughter designed my blog header, so I'm glad you enjoyed it!
Rebecca LuElla Miller says
Great post, Val. I love the podcast link that encourages others to listen to the interview. I gained some new perspective in what you wrote.
Thanks for coming by, Becky. I've become a podcast junkie lately, and am really loving the Fiction Addict ones as well as others.