The Woodlands, TX (PressExposure) December 22, 2009 -- Coming at a time when most Americans are pretty much unhappy with everything, A Faithful Proposal (IGI Publishing) by Alan Beck provides much-needed mirth for the soul. It covers the gamut with its manic ride through the irritable bowels of our health care system, taking a darkly funny descent into the sclerotic heart of contemporary religions (both mainstream and fringe), and a Prozac-induced mock homage to corporate and individual greed.
In a story where just the characters names will induce smiles, the tale begins with the resignation of Brooks McRump, CEO of Bonanza insurance companies. Undaunted, he goes out to conquer other worlds and sets his sight on religions as his prime takeover targets. He joins forces with Steven Kopflopper, retired psychiatrist and his former COO, and together they use the internet to revolutionize religions in their quest to acquire them all!
Things get very interesting when they add dining and entertainment to their mix-and- match versions of religion, leading up to Religious Idol Contests, and advertising prayer numbers on glowing white arches of a sports stadium. After guests get an education at Faith Mountain that includes a 'virtual tour' of the history of religion, participants are parachuted down the mountain where they meet the founders of all religions, visit Heaven and Hell and their inhabitants, and witness crusades, inquisitions, and magic moments in religious history. Running a for-profit organization makes it easy to enlist high profile religious leaders who are eager to enjoy the perks, and as religious zeal spreads so does the number of new centers popping up around the country. The buzz spreads to network television where founder, Brooks McRump, gets interviewed by Larry King.
Rifle Rae Virgin becomes a leader in the organization and succeeds in uniting the newer faith counselors in testing the souls of the founding fathers of Faith America. When the counselors are wined and dined in Florida to placate their envy of the leaders' enormous success, an Indian chief meets the leadership and shares surprising visions with them. Fate ultimately descends to tame the ambitions and greed of the leaders who undergo a revival, with true faith and family values returning at the end to save the day. A Faithful Proposal has many great messages in its text; written expertly and with just the right amount of dark humor, it makes it possible to laugh at ourselves.