Not God's Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms

Not God's Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms

Holly Ordway / Dec 12, 2019

Not God s Type An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms What happens when an atheist college professor at spiritual ground zero asks herself What if God is real In this memoir of her conversion Holly Ordway turns her analytical mind toward the path that l

  • Title: Not God's Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms
  • Author: Holly Ordway
  • ISBN: 9781586179991
  • Page: 134
  • Format: Hardcover
  • What happens when an atheist college professor at spiritual ground zero asks herself What if God is real In this memoir of her conversion, Holly Ordway turns her analytical mind toward the path that leads from darkness to light from death to life Simultaneously encouraging and bracing, she offers a bold testimony to the ongoing power of the Gospel a Gospel that can huWhat happens when an atheist college professor at spiritual ground zero asks herself What if God is real In this memoir of her conversion, Holly Ordway turns her analytical mind toward the path that leads from darkness to light from death to life Simultaneously encouraging and bracing, she offers a bold testimony to the ongoing power of the Gospel a Gospel that can humble and transform even self assured, accomplished, and secular minded young professionals like herself.

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      Published :2019-09-21T18:20:42+00:00

    About "Holly Ordway"

      • Holly Ordway

        Holly Ordway is Professor of English and faculty in the M.A in Apologetics at Houston Baptist University she holds a PhD in English from the University of Massachusetts Amherst She is the author of Not God s Type An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms Ignatius, 2014 and Apologetics and the Christian Imagination An Integrated Approach to Defending the Faith Emmaus Road, 2017 Dr Ordway is also a published poet, and the Charles Williams Subject Editor for the Journal of Inklings Studies Her academic work focuses on the writings of the Inklings, especially C.S Lewis and J.R.R Tolkien Her current book project is Tolkien s Modern Sources Middle earth Beyond the Middle Ages forthcoming from Kent State University Press, 2019.


    1. I have to say I really enjoyed this book. In fact, I couldn't put it down this afternoon. I grew up in the Christian faith, and never left, despite being in a technical field where one colleague questioned how I can call myself a Christian and an engineer at the same time. Dr. Ordway grew up ignorant of religion and became a proud atheist English Lit professor before turning to God only a few years ago. Although we come from opposite spiritual backgrounds, her unwavering search for truth, no mat [...]

    2. I read a review in Books and Culture about this book. It would be a good book to read for an apologetics class in seminary. This is the second edition of the book. The subtitle has changed from: A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith to: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms. Also, a new last chapter - she has become Catholic (she was an Episcopalian in her first formative years as a Christian). This is a thoughtful read about her process in becoming a Christian. She is a reader - loving the [...]

    3. I expected to love this book, so much so that I bought the Kindle version, but I didn't. Even though I share a lot of the author's reading (Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Hopkins, etc.) I can't really relate to her story. There seems to be so many gaps. Does she have a family? How did they react? Way too much about fencing (okay, I get that this is a metaphor for her struggles with belief, but she spends too much time on it)but very little about relationships with anyone besides her fencing coach. Perhaps [...]

    4. If you love a beautifully written conversion story with a hefty dose of nerdiness, this is the book for you. I read it in three sittings and am not ashamed to admit that I have a serious academic crush on Holly Ordway. Highly recommend!

    5. I was so blessed by this book!! Those of us that were raised in Christian homes have no idea what it’s like to not have, that knowledge of and connection to, the Lord readily available to us. We take so much for granted. It’s obvious from her writing style that Holly is highly educated and while some of us may not share her love for the same type of literature or poetry, she doesn’t go above our heads with her words. She has made it so easy to see things from an non-believers perspective. [...]

    6. the story of a liberal feminist who chooses bigotry and not thinking for herselfso this starts out about a woman's search for meaningcool cool coolwe all need something, and christianity apparently fits the bill for this woman, who is technically an academic but does some lazy analysis in order to "think" herself into christianitylike she doesn't want to admit that she likes it, but she really likes itand that's fine, i don't personally agree that occam's razor proves the existence of god, but y [...]

    7. I want to preface this review by saying that I am a Christian, but I am curious about the faith journeys of people who began their lives as atheists. Ordway was one of those arrogant professors who delights in taunting Christian teenagers. For a person with such a prideful attitude, I was a bit surprised to discover how shockingly ignorant she was of the basic features of Christianity. She was a Literature professor who had never read the Bible! One thing she did believe in was Truth. Once she b [...]

    8. Actually, the book I read is the 2014 edition which has a different title: "Not God's Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms." I believe that title is likely to be more accurate in describing her former stance, than the term "Rational Academic". I was disappointed that had only the one choice to select. However, I really liked this book. Ordway's academic background is literature, especially the genre of fantasy and folklore, and I liked her style of weaving quotes from The Lord of the Ri [...]

    9. I am an agnostic, and a very close friend gave me this book hoping I could find my faith. It did not really work for me (the main character in the book was a life-long atheist who becomes a believer after she learns about God; while I used to be a believer but later started to question faith), but the book itself was great - the story of someone finding a purpose in life through her clarity and openness.

    10. I love stories of atheists finding God through their own explorations. This is a well thought out book about a woman choosing to pursue truth even when she knows the answers may be life-changing and unsettling. Ordway shares her brave search with us in a way that's easy to relate to, even if we've never been in her situation. I applaud her efforts as a Christian as well as her efforts as a writer.I won my copy through First Reads.

    11. A Lewiseque conversion story. She tells the story of her journey from atheism to Christ, but the pivotal place of imagination is key. Does she end up in the Roman Catholic Church because of a imagination-deficit in evangelicalism?,

    12. Holly's book is an adventure through the intellectual forests and valleys of modern thought. She traces her steps as a defiant atheist professor to the world of Christian scholarship with the guidance of gifted apologists and scholars like Peter Kreeft, C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton and N.T. Wright. On the path she encounters logical argument after logical argument (and some other arguments as well) that seems to point away from her atheism and towards God & Christ, and eventually, the Catholi [...]

    13. Ordway tells an honest, wonderful story of how she moved from Atheism to following Christ. Her sharing of her thought process along the way is insightful for anyone sharing Jesus. She points out how she would have been put off by high pressure tactics to convert her. She was, instead, walked alongside with and patiently encouraged to continue to look at Christianity for herself. Very inspirational but also instructive. Cannot recommend it enough.

    14. An amazing story of conversion! Ordway's meticulous story of reasoning through the reality of the gospel is both compelling and convicting. She pulls no punches, but she is always coldly, brutally, honest. Her work is a memoir of years of study, contemplation and prayer leading, execorably, to the reality of salvation in Christ. Very recommended! I give you joy it!

    15. Solid 3.5 stars. This book gave me the insight I was hoping to find in Scott Hahn's "Rome Sweet Home", but while his academic works I've been more receptive too, something about his personal story didn't work for me. Maybe because he already came from a theological academic lifestyle and belief and while having a childhood background in his world, it wasn't as relatable now.Holly Ordway, on the other hand, came from non-belief to the point she's at now, which I felt more relatable, as well as he [...]

    16. A delightful read that shows us once again that one does not have to hang up their brain to come to Christ!!!

    17. Pretty good story of a girl's journey from atheism to faith and the apologetics, authors and friends who influenced her.

    18. I thoroughly enjoyed Not God's Type: A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith. This new title traces the journey of Dr. Holly Ordway, a professor of English literature, from devout atheism to orthodox Christianity. She begins by recounting her background and how her initial indifference to Christianity turned to hostility during college. Her opinion was that "faith was at best a delusion and at worst total hypocrisy." (p. 17) Years later, her background in English literature and love of poetry, [...]

    19. Holly Ordway'sNot God's Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Armsis a well written account of Ordway's own journey from non-believing atheist to devout Catholic who prays for her students. A poet, Ordway shares her doubt, her deeply probing questions, and her eventual turnabout in riveting language that speaks to anyone who has had questions or doubts in his/her own mind. Using her sport, fencing, as a background, she makes comparisons that are solid and understandable even for one who knows [...]

    20. I've read a lot of personal testimony books. I'm more than happy Holly found Christianity, etc, but this format didn't work for me. IMHO much of it has to do with editing, formatting and promotion. The Testimony I woukd have liked to have read about Holly's life before knowledge of Christianity without any qualifiers or Christianese. It was very retrospective and spent enough time explaining why she was wrong throughout this stage. This would have been much more engaging rather than saying 'I di [...]

    21. I found this book moving in how the author went from not believing in God to believing. I didn't read like a normal book as it wasn't chronological, the first few chapters were about particular topics and how her views on them changed or broadened after she came to God. Once she started on her journey, then it became chronological. I did at times wonder how she came to change her mind. Sometimes it was vague while others she pointed out what she said to the man who helped her the most and what h [...]

    22. Halfway through reading the book, I attended a writing conference at Houston Baptist University whereby the author was lecturing. It was great to put a face, her actual voice to the story. The book is a memoir, really a testimony of how she came to faith in God through reading good stories (she is an English professor), through her fencing coach, through the circumstances that put her prostrate before the living God. The revised edition includes her faith journey thus far from being Anglican to [...]

    23. I enjoyed this but also found it slightly disappointing.At one level, it's an excellent account of a learned atheist coming to faith through the witness of her fencing coach - who seems to have been a wise, godly man. I'd like to have heard more about him - and even read some sections by him. That would have raised the book to another level. Still - the way in which she honestly grapples with truth is encouraging and insightful.However, her journey from Anglicanism into Roman Catholicism lacked [...]

    24. As someone raised in a Christian home, it's hard for me to imagine a life with no knowledge of Christianity. The author was an intellectual and an atheist who thought that the Bible was a fairy tale and that smart people didn't believe in God. As a professor of English literature, though, she was intrigued by the faith expressed in some of the poems she loved. She fenced in competition, and her fencing coach was a Christian. He never tried to evangelize her, which would have sent her running the [...]

    25. WOW! What an intelligent woman Holly Ordway, not God's type because she's an atheist professor of English literature. After studying Keats' and Donne's poetry she wonders what did these men know. She feels a new hunger. She realizes her fencing coach, Josh, has strong Christian beliefs without being a pushy-type of guy. He is her intellectual equal, thus they have many conversations about morality and God.Some of the philosophical arguments were difficult for me to understand, however Ordway’ [...]

    26. I discovered this book through a ' acquaintance, and it was a great surprise. Holly Ordway describes in an intimist manner her conversion. Reading Ms Ordway's book, I was wondering why almost all the people (Scott Hahn excluded) I read about who converted are women and from anglo-Saxon countries. Maybe it's some language and culture bias from me, maybe the new frontiers to Christianity are the women in the USA. Decades of Liberation Theology burned the minds and souls of the people in the countr [...]

    27. Very insightful book. Ordway's journey to faith is very similar to C.S. Lewis's (they were both atheistic literature professors), and makes for fascinating and encouraging reading. I came away wanting to be a better witness for Christ toward unbelievers. Important note on which edition you read: the second edition (2015) of this book was published by Ignatius rather than Moody (2010), and also chronicles Ordway's conversion to Roman Catholicism five years after her initial conversion to Christia [...]

    28. I read approximately 2/3rds of this book. What I read I liked, but by the time I got to my stopping point I had gotten what I needed from it. The author, a once-atheist English major (hmmm sounding familiar) often remarked she didn't need gods/God, religion, or spirituality. However, life (God?) had other plans, and this account details her experiences, meanderings, and musings. It was nice to read about someone so much like myself--a reader, somewhat introverted with independent idealism always [...]

    29. An honest and intriguing book about one woman's voyage from intellectualism to faith. I loved the author's retelling of her hesitant journey from a cynical academic lifeview to an acceptance of the Truth - a trip that she points out was based on, not in spite of, her reason and intelligence. It's refreshing to be reminded that God works through science, reason and law, not in spite of them, and that these these things are a testament to His existence, not contrary to them. As a member of the Chu [...]

    30. One of the most well-written spiritual memoirs I have ever read. Dr Ordway's conversion was facilitated by what she calls "imaginative apologetics." The seeds were planted by the works of authors like Tolkien and Hopkins, and it was through her encounters with these texts that her moral imagination developed to the point where she could begin to rationally consider the doctrinal teachings of the Christian faith. Ordway beautifully describes this subtle, complex, and deeply personal experience; a [...]

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