I've had a number of people ask me what I think about William Young's book The Shack. I've had to tell them I don't know because I've never read it. I do not plan to in the near future either, so I offer instead Michael Spencer's one-paragraph review of Roger Olson's Finding God in the Shack, which analyzes The Shack (how's that for a few steps removed from actually reading the book?):
Finding God in the Shack
by Roger Olson (IVP). Olson is one of the most vigorous theological
authors willing to take on the reformed intelligensia, as can be seen
in his books Arminian Theology and Reformed and Always Reforming.
In this book, Olson takes a measured, but overall positive view of
William Young’s theological novel. Olson’s book is already garnering
negative reviews from those who are convinced The Shack is a
theological threat to Christians who aren’t paying sufficient attention
to the Bible’s prohibitions on creative writing. (I assume C.S. Lewis’s
is in for a beat down in the near future.) Where does Olson come out? A
balanced, moderate, intelligent, appreciative and overall positive
view. Don’t start a ministry on it. Don’t confuse imagery with heresy.
Appreciate the personal core of the story that is touching so many.
(Olson collates Young’s story of Mack with his own struggles with a
pastor father.) Use it as a discussion starter. Be fair and realistic
about the overall effect of the book. A fine response to the
three-alarm fires that have dominated the internet.