"Defiant Joy" by Kevin Belmonte

Kevin Belmonte, Defiant Joy: The Remarkable Life & Impact of G.K. Chesterton. Thomas Nelson, 2011.  336 pages. 

Thanks to BookSneeze® for providing a free copy of this book for me to review. 

One could not do better in at the start of a bibliography than to echo Chesterton's own aims as a biographer: "to introduce a life and legacy that should be better known," as Belmonte paraphrases on the first page of this book. Such is the content of this book: an introduction to the life and legacy of G.K. Chesterton.  Belmonte weaves chapters which amount to book reviews with perspectives from many others who knew or knew of Chesterton and Chesterton's own words into a marvelous image of G.K.C.

Defiant Joy is an excellent book.  I have always been a G.K.C. fan, but Belmonte succeeded in renewing my interest and excitement for this man and his writing.  Through a perfect mix of narrative of narrative and quotes Belmonte has successfully displayed a small piece of Chesterton's spirit and passion in this book. He introduces the reader to Chesterton's main ideas in a style that is reminiscent of the man himself.  Though some of the chapters of this book really are nothing more than book reviews, one should hardly expect less in a biography of a man as prolific as G.K.C. I am not exaggerating in the least to say that I put down Defiant Joy and picked up both Greybeard's at Play and The Wild Knight and Other Stories to read immediately.  

Conclusion: 4.5 of 5 Stars.  Recommended.  If you are already a Chesterton fan, then this book will fan the flames of your interest.  If you are not a Chesterton fan then hurry up and read this book, followed by some of Chesterton's own, so that you can become one!

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