I use Grammarly's plagiarism checker because sometimes there's reason my dialog sounds eerily like a Dos Equis commercial.
I've been reading a lot of N.D. Wilson lately, which is to say, as of five minutes ago, I've read everything he's written: The 100 Cupboards Trilogy, Leepike Ridge, Ashtown Burials, Death by Living and Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl.
The author who forces you to read everything he or she has written is a rare find and I can count the ones I've met with my fingers. P.D. James was one of the last such discoveries for me and that was about eight years ago, and those wondrously haunting, psychological, bloody murders got me through the hardest days of seminary. Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl is the book that made me realize I'd have to read all of Wilson's stuff and his first nonfiction work.
What I like about Wilson? His irrepressible, G.K. Chesterton-like happiness in the created world, a faith that inspires humor (all too rare), and his optimism about death.
Wilson's writing jones is impressive, but what I enjoy even more than his wordsmithery is his outlook. It's a dogged, tenacious happiness that few possess and fewer still could explain or express. Christians should be happy, even when we're beat up. We should find a lot to joke about, starting with ourselves. If you follow Jesus, then you're in the camp that states unequivocally, Death is already the punchline of God's comedy, death has been had, death poses no real threat. Wilson:
This world is beautiful but badly broken. St. Paul said that it groans, but I love it even in its groaning. I love this round stage where we act out the tragedies and comedies of history. I love it with all of its villains and petty liars and self-righteous pompers. I love the ants and the laughter of wide-eyed children encountering their first butterfly. I love it as it is, because it is a story, and it isn't stuck in one place. It is full of conflict and darkness like every good story. And like every good story, there will be an ending. I love the world as it is, because I love what it will be.Other reasons I like Wilson: He has five kids. Renovates his own house. Has a high tolerance for risk, reasons outlined above, and...he writes. All said, this guy does my heart good. Highly recommended.