Book Recommendation - Gift for non-believer?

So it’s getting close to Christmas and today I was thinking about getting a friend of mine who is a non-believer, secular, possible atheist young man, a Christmas present.
He loves to read and I wanted to get him a book, but I really wanted to get him something that would, in a very subtle and unobtrusive way introduce him to some Christian ideas or some ideas of God.
He loves Samuel Beckett, Flann O’Brien, and that type of thing, so if there was an author of that ilk who was a believer, perhaps that would be a good idea.

Thanks. :slight_smile:

The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton.

Fr.Bill M
Jul 25, 2007 Fr.Bill M rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: christian-apologetics-polemics

Men and women have become Christians solely from reading this one book. If you are not a Christian, beware this book. It will possibly convert you. If it does not, then it will probably irreparably harden your heart. A book to save you eternally or to damn you to hell forever. Amazing.

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Edward Waverley
Jul 22, 2008 Edward Waverley rated it 5 of 5 stars · review of another edition
Recommends it for: people with a profile on MySpace.
Recommended to Edward by: CS Lewis

Was Jesus the son of God? I think one of the most fascinating attempts to answer that question was mounted in the early 20th century by the two famous friends and literary rivals HG Wells and GK Chesterton, respectively the agnostic extraordinaire and the Catholic par excellence. For Wells, so emphatic was his need to debunk the notion of Christ’s divinity that he took a break from his novels and switched to a series of writings on history, the most famous of which ws his “Outline of History.” C …more
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Jan 19, 2014 Jonathan rated it 5 of 5 stars · review of another edition
Shelves: own, g-k-chesterton, faith, historical, non-fiction, classic-literature, personal-favourites

The Everlasting Man is not your typical Christian apologetics classic. I say this because G.K. Chesterton is not aiming to write a pure ‘defence of the faith’ as it were, but to write a work that better explores the relationship of Christianity to history. It has become something of a fashionable statement to ignore the relevance of Christianity as it pertains to history and so Chesterton sets out to first explore the concept of God and his role as more than merely just another aspect of mytholo …more
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shaun mccormick
Mar 03, 2008 shaun mccormick rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: every single person on earth
Shelves: christian

The best book I have ever read.

A wonderful chronicle of how the entirety of history reaches its pinnacle in Jesus. From the start, Chesterton takes the poetic road; he swipes at the theory of evolution by asserting the necessity of art, the desire to create, and the noticing of beauty in unattractive things.

Sweeping into the mythologies, he shows how civilizations actually decline into polytheism from monotheism, rather than the generally-accepted opposite. He then shows how the Roman empire was …more
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Clare Cannon
Dec 11, 2011 Clare Cannon rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: adults, non-fiction

A brilliant study of comparative religion from earliest known human history to recent times. Chesterton looks at the essence of each religion and what makes them different to Christianity, so that you gradually realise that there is very little in which they can be compared, much less considered similar. There is no political correctness is what he says, if there were, the differences would have been neutralised until everything tasted more or less the same.

However, Chesterton may be best read …more
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Aug 21, 2007 Brian rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: To Any Open Minded Person (but any Catholic it is a must)

Chesterton is a genius. Period.

This book, more than most others that are on the subject of Christian apologetics, blew me away. I can’t really put into words anything more than that. Maybe until I read it again. My mind was just stretched to its limits in the scope and density of his arguments.

Chesterton covers every argument for Christ & Christianity and its need and place in history.

I recommend this book to any Christian and most especially to any Catholic to read in their lifetime. At …more

***I’ve reread this book after ten years and found it just as astonishing a work as I did the first time around. ***Chesterton is a consummate apologist, combining a sincere reverence for his subject matter with a devastating sense of humour and a true generalist’s erudition. He has a wonderful ability of taking accepted secular dogmas, turning them completely on their heads, and in the process making Catholic dogmas, rejected for their lack of congruence with modernism, look sensible and enlightened. This polemical mastery is one of the enduring qualities of The Everlasting Man. --A Customer

This is a book that everyone ought to read two or three times at least. It is a crime that such nonsense as Conversations With God, or better but still relatively shallow introductions to comparative religion like Religions of Man, seem to be better known. Here you will find a description of Christianity and its relation to other faiths strong and fine as aged wine. I don’t know of anyone who writes with this much class in the modern world. Having ordered the book for our college library, I tried not to mark it too much, but found myself putting ink dots on paragraph after paragraph of material I wanted to quote. He rambles a bit, but I think there is more wisdom, humor, and insight in a single page of this book than in whole volumes that are better known in our days. --David Marshall

Everlasting Man had a decisive role in one of the most important conversions of the this century. C.S. Lewis described reading it in 1925 when he was still an atheist: “Then I read Chesterton’s Everlasting Man and for the first time saw the whole Christian outline of history set out in a form that seemed to me to make sense . . . I already thought Chesterton the most sensible man alive;apart from his Christianity; Now, I veritably believe, I thought that Christianity itself was very sensible;apart from its Christianity.” (Surprised by Joy p.223) When asked what Christian writers had helped him, Lewis remarked in 1963, six months before he died; "The contemporary book that has helped me the most is Chesterton’s The Everlasting Man." (God in the Dock p.260.) --Fr. Phil Bloom

The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist, by Matt Baglio. The author was not a practising Catholic before he wrote this, but his research changed that. The nice thing is that it’s a compelling enough book to keep non-believers interested.

Another one is Our Lady of Fatima by William T Walsh. It writes about how even the atheist Freemasons and the secular Portuguese government newspaper witnessed the Miracle of the Sun. So nobody can say it’s just people of faith deluding themselves. However it’s probably better for strengthening faith rather than convincing people of no faith. In which case, The Rite would be more useful.

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