Maybe it’s the cynic in me, but a modern day prophet who shares/interprets dreams doesn’t seem very realistic. However, when you set that modern day prophet against the backdrop of fictionalized real events and give him a different voice, you can’t help but appreciate this story. Jeff Fulmer’s Hometown Prophet is the story of Peter Quill, a 31 year old man who has moved home to live with his mother after several fits and starts at life. Peter starts as a timid man, carrying layers of shame and hurt who unexpectedly receives a “gift” of vivid dreams that are unlike any other dreams he’s had. He begins to record these dreams, trying to find meaning in each one as they come along. Not sure what to do with these experiences, Peter consults with his mother’s pastor at the church at which he grew up–the same man who is at the center of Peter’s initial dreams. The two realize that Peter’s dreams truly are different–prophetic, even–coming true just as Peter envisioned. With each subsequent dream, the stakes become higher–and Peter receives more varied and intense reactions from others–particularly once Peter’s dreams begin to challenge the worldviews of people in his hometown.
This books includes an interesting and varied cast of characters that are similar to people we might encounter in our own hometowns. The difference is, Peter has a voice that can be heard, prophesying in a somewhat stereotypical way of an Evangelical with the content of a revolutionary for social justice and love. The question is whether anyone will listen.
In spite of my cynicism regarding a modern day dreaming prophet, this story was captivating and the book moved along quickly. What I appreciated most about Peter was that he was a very real, down to earth, ordinary man who was cautious in his attributions and quick to admit his own imperfections. He was not at all pretentious and had many of the characteristics you might expect a “true prophet” to hold. What I appreciated most about the book was the way in which Peter was given a voice–and ultimately how he used that voice–to challenge beliefs and thoughts of those around him. Who doesn’t want to be able to do that at some point?
There were a handful of typos, grammatical mistakes, and the occasional word missing from a sentence that is distracting for someone like me. However, it was not enough to frustrate.
Fulmer admits that this book was born out of his own frustrations with how Christianity has been misused and misrepresented for personal and political gain. I share those same frustrations and was happy to read a book that challenged those values in somewhat of a lighthearted way. It’s not a book I would have ordinarily picked up, but I’m glad I did.
Note: Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR,Part 255.