What would a Christian martyr want to say to us beyond the grave? What wisdom would he impart having passed beyond this world? What unique perspective would he share? In his book Letters From A Martyred Christian, H.L. Hussman takes on the guise of Aulus Aurelius, a man who died for his faith in Christ in the first century, and talks about the meaning of life and spirituality.
Frustrations with this book began from the preface. Hussman says that this is a work of fiction, loosely based on the life of Aurelius. However, only the first chapter recounted his story, and because of a general lack of knowledge of the historical record, it is impossible to separate what may have been fact from what is fiction. At the end of the book is a list of questions to use in discussing the book in a small group, but he already said in the preface that it is a work of fiction and should not be taken seriously.
After the first chapter, stories ranging from a bizarre space journey to tales whose point is to simply draw emotion rounded out this short book. It was difficult to decide what point the book makes as a whole and why it had to be told through the perspective of someone we know so little about.
Quixotic at best, this collection of Lucadoian stories were very disappointing. My trust in the author was immediately betrayed by his premise and did not offer much to justify the time spent reading it. Had the premise not frustrated me so much, I am not sure how much I would have appreciated the rest of the book. However, had I known this book was a collection of man-centered moralistic stories I would not have read it in the first place.
I simply cannot recommend this book.