Welcome to “Lies Speaking Truth,” a podcast about the intersection of faith and popular fiction, with your hosts Roy Askins and Christopher Gillespie.

Francis Rossow in his book, Gospel Patterns in Literature: Familiar Truths in Unexpected Places, points out that sometimes, the Gospel can spill out of a story in unexpected ways, perhaps even ways not originally intended by the author. The purpose of Lies Speaking Truth, is to look at young adult literature to see in what way such Gospel does—or doesn’t—spill out.

A novel or fiction story does not speak the truth about the events it records, but it may—and more often than not does—speak a certain truth about the world. Our Lord calls us to be discerning in our interactions with the world, and here at Lies Speaking Truth, we seek to provide some insights into the various themes of various popular works. Part of understanding a literary work entails understanding the worldview implicit within its pages. For this task, we recommend James W. Sire’s The Universe Next Door: A Basic Worldview Catalog. As the subtitle states, Sire’s book is a Basic Worldview Catalogue in which his gives a brief history and development of various worldviews and how they interact or differ from each other.

Secondly, we also follow Dr. Gene E. Veith’s contention that literary works can be analyzed in two ways: for their aesthetic quality and their moral quality. In the former sense we seek to understand whether the art is pleasing. Does it delight the reader? In the latter sense we seek to understand whether the art is good. Does it praise virtue, even though it might include horrendous acts and deeds? For further information, please see Dr. Veith’s book, Reading Between the Lines: A Christian Guide to Literature.

While we certainly do not limit ourselves to young adult fiction, we will emphasize young adult fiction and other literary classics. If you have something you’d like us to review, please let us know by sending us an email.

There are many other resources for following youth fiction. Check out the following links for more:

NPR’s Back Seat Book Club