Imagine the scene: Hell is filling up. “God has finally become unhinged.” He decides to send one of his angels back to earth to figure out a way to stem the tide of souls into Hell. The angel he sends is not really a surprise. In uncanny similarities to stories in the Bible he is born into a loving family on earth and shows amazing insights and abilities from a very young age. The Songs of Angels by G.A. Weston is a thought-provoking account of the angel’s thirty-eight years as American David Brookes an adventurous journalist.
Because he has been an angel from time immemorial David thinks he knows the secret to getting into Heaven: Believe you will make it. He writes a best-selling book with a controversial message to carry out his mission: Believe in yourself don’t count on God to help you out of your messes. He is also almost continuously talking to his guardian angels Gabriel and Michael on the side and this discourse tells much of the story.
For the believer The Songs of Angels seems sacrilegious. There are certain things you shouldn’t say to or about God. Yet the language the naughtiness the funny little quips are just what you would expect from this particular angel. To add to the entrancement the reader gets a glimpse of Heaven. Who else would you expect on God’s Board of Directors but Mohammed Martin Mahatma the Archangel Michael and various other angels?
David’s life story follows the familiar path. He has followers he performs miracles he is severely tested a woman named Mary has great confidence in him he moves from town to town giving speeches and treachery leads to his death. The Songs of Angels is not for the religiously squeamish as it raises uncomfortable notions and questions about God. Themes of betrayal forgiveness peace doubt fundamentalism and freewill pop up from time to time throughout David’s life and the reader ends up cheering him on as he experiences both joy and fear.
The major strength of The Songs of Angels is the storytelling. The dialogue is excellent and the author’s sense of humor shines through such lines as “…he rushes in where angels fear to tread.” An irritating amount of poor punctuation (particularly an over use of commas) pervades the book which is puzzling since the author’s writing talent should preclude such errors. However given the ornery nature of the angel storyteller perhaps this is purposive and fitting. The Songs of Angels is both amusing and provocative reading and would make a great gift for the sophisticated reader.