Elinor’s relationship with God forms as much of a basis throughout the story as her visions, and she speaks reverently of the time they spend together. God appears to her as a “kind of heat shimmer that is roughly the size of a man,” and, though she acknowledges he appears in a way that she can recognize and understand, she also explores his intangible nature—“What I see is not who or what God is. It is a small piece of divinity that is knowable.” As God takes Elinor back through her life, and sometimes painful memories, she eventually agrees to share his message that "Humans on Earth are killing themselves and most life on the planet.”
Scharff probes grander themes than Elinor’s visions, including the idea of free will, the cost to follow a predestined path, and the consequences that come with ignoring glaring problems like climate change and human violence. Elinor’s path is emotional and draws alarming similarities to the current trajectory of the world, highlighting the ways that humans affect the Earth through greed, technological advances, and the quest for power—but God’s love is carefully portrayed as gentle and wise throughout. This compassionate wake-up-call strikes a chord.
Takeaway: An entreaty to take care of Earth—and each other.
Comparable Titles: WM. Paul Young's The Shack, Mitch Albom's The Five People You Meet in Heaven.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A