Grand Pa- Good news from the Good Feel Cornfield by Charles C. Finney Jr.

In Grand Pa- Good news from the Good Feel Cornfield, Mr. Finney shares some memories of his grandfather, along with his own spiritual commentary. 

I would enjoy the homespun wisdom of this book if it wasn’t for the egregious capitalization, punctuation, and spelling errors, as well as incomplete sentences, sentence fragments, mixed metaphors, and improperly attributed quotes. 

In addition to the formatting issues, the author’s thought processes are not always clear. For example, he compares rows of corn to isolated people to Haggai 1:5, “Consider your ways” (Finney 10-11). I already was struggling to understand the connection between rows of corn and isolated people, and when he threw in the Scripture reference, I was completely lost. Throughout the rest of the book, there are also places where the author copies and pastes Scripture passages without explanation or commentary (13, 23-25). 

Another element that confused me about this book is that there is no clear distinction between the author’s own thoughts and the thoughts of the grandfather character. The author writes, “Grandpa was not what you might call a religious man” (Finney 14). This is extremely confusing after the overtly religious content of the previous pages. 

One of my favorite sections of this book is “Grand Pa and the Chicken Nest” (Finney 16).The author writes, “We gather our favorite things around us to create a safe dwelling place providing us warmth, comfort, security, beauty, and peace” (17). He goes on to talk about how the local church builds a nest in which “people show love one to another” (19). I thought that image was really beautiful. 

One of the worst parts of the book, in my opinion, is when the author calls human thieves “two-legged rats” and uses a metaphor about rats to explain his theories on racism (Finney 31-33). I understand that a farmer would want to protect his possessions from human thieves, but calling them two-legged rats is going too far, in my opinion. 

Overall, I would give this book three stars. The wisdom that the author inherited from his grandfather is really precious. I would have loved to read about his memories of his grandfather without spiritual commentary. 

Originally posted on Literature Approved

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