Collapsing a work as complex as The Secret Chord into a simple summary guide is no small accomplishment, but it is executed masterfully here. We are given first a very straightforward recitation of what is far from a simple straightforward plot, and from there we get analysis of the characters, the themes, the world of the story and the world of the bible in that time.
Characters are analyzed as who they start as, who they become, and what the journey means. "Finally, as a contrast to them both, Natan details the unsullied personality of Shomo, who combines the best qualities of both David and Natan."
I love the writing style in this one. "David trash talked the giant with his mesmerizing voice and beaned him with a stone." I never thought of David trash talking before, and now I can't get the image out of my head.
I would recommend reading this if you want to see The Secret Chord would appeal to you. It would be good to read it after, to see the story in a compressed form so better to get a holistic view of the work.
It is especially useful to book discussion groups or for classrooms (not in lieu of reading the original if it is for school) as this summary covers a wide range of discussion points. "David's glorious but flawed life raises key questions about what makes a good man and leader."
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.