I wrote a book review for the first time in forever! This is actually a review of a reread, since I didn’t review this book the first time but it demanded a review. Adorning the Dark was a 5-star read in December of 2019, and it’s still a 5-star read now.
The first time I read this book I knew that it was beautiful, but it was like watching scenery fly by through the window of a moving car. I read it in one sitting, I didn’t look into the books or songs or poems mentioned throughout, I simply observed its beauty from the outside.
This read-through was more like taking a walk through a vibrant garden, taking time to appreciate each flower and wonder at the precise combination of elements that led to its flourishing. I paid attention to each chapter. I listened to the songs. I read the poems. I made note of the books. Because this isn’t just a book about Peterson and his art (though it is that, and it’s lovely); it’s a book about Christ in art. And as such, it gives credit to so many other artists who have also been moved by Christ and who reflect Him in their work. Rich Mullins, Tolkien, Lewis, N.D. Wilson, and so many others that I don’t know yet.
This book is a reminder that God creates beauty, and that He equips us to reflect that beauty through sub-creation. It’s a reminder that we who strive for that aren’t alone. It’s a reminder that God has a purpose for our work, and He has created others who share that purpose so that we might find community and spur one another on. It’s a reminder of how God’s beauty and love and guidance weaves through every part of our lives.
There’s a sense of wonder and awe in this book, a feeling of reading about a kindred spirit, and a yearning that is sparked for a greater Kingdom, that I just can’t fully describe. All I can say is: if you’re a Christian artist, you ought to read this book.
Have you read Adorning the Dark? I’d love to hear what you thought! If not, does it sound like a book that would interest you?