A Comic Tale of Life, Death and Atheism
Author: Mary Eberstadt
Length: 149 pages
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A wickedly witty satire, The Loser Letters chronicles the conversion of a young adult Christian to atheism. With modern humor rivaling that of the media lampooning Onion, found on college campuses all over America, A. F. Christian’s open letters to the “spokesmen of the New Atheism” explain her reasons for rejecting God and the logical consequences of that choice. Along the way she offers pithy advice to famous atheists such as Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens, in the hope of helping them win over more Christians.
“Of course we score big time with the young guys who aren’t responsible for anything, and don’t really care about anything besides spending most of their time in the basement playing video games and texting girls,” A.F. Christian points out. But what about all those serious, thoughtful people who are Christian believers? If the New Atheism is to make real headway, she argues, its advocates must do more to persuade intelligent theists living meaningful and fulfilling lives.
Amid the many current books arguing for or against religion, social critic and writer Mary Eberstadt’s The Loser Letters is truly unique: a black comedy about theism and atheism that is simultaneously a rollicking defense of Christianity.
Echoing C.S. Lewis’ Screwtape Letters and Dante’s Divine Comedy, Eberstadt takes aim at bestsellers like The God Delusion and God Is Not Great with the sexual libertinism their authors advocate. In her loveable and articulate tragic-comic heroine, A.F. Christian, Dawkins, Hitchens and the other “Brights” have met their match.
“As a Christian humorist, Mary Eberstadt
is the rightful heir and assignee of C.S. Lewis, and her heroine in The Loser
Letters is the legitimate child (or perhaps grandchild) of “the patient”
in The Screwtape Letters.”
— P.J. O'Rourke, Author, Parliament of Whores
This is a wise, funny, and winning book.
— Michael Novak, author, No One Sees God
Mary Eberstadt is one smart cookie. If you don't
believe me, ask Satan.
—George Weigel,author Cube and the Cathedral
"This book is a gem. Through letters of
advice from A.F. Christian, an enthusiastic convert to the cause of the new
atheists, Mary Eberstadt deftly exposes the flaws in their views. Using the
lingo of pop culture to hilarious effect, she offers a scathing satire of their
question-begging arguments and shows with great wit that they are not just wrongheaded
but downright laughable. Yet this spirited defense of Christian faith is also
a poignant commentary on what it means to be human."
—Fr. Peter Ryan, S.J., Professor of Moral Theology, Mt. St. Mary's Seminary
Mary Eberstadt is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and consulting editor to Policy Review, the Hoover Institution's bimonthly journal. She is the author of Home-Alone America: The Hidden Toll of Day Care, Behavioral Drugs and Other Parent Substitutes. She is also editor of Why I Turned Right: Leading Baby Boom Conservatives Chronicle Their Political Journeys. Focusing on social and cultural issues, Eberstadt has written widely for various magazines and newspapers, including Policy Review, the Weekly Standard, First Things, American Conservative, the American Spectator, Los Angeles Times, London Times, Newark Star-Ledger, and the Wall Street Journal.
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