Wednesday, May 02, 2007

CFBA presents: Tribulation House, by Chris Well



Mark Hogan has it all. The job. The family. A position on the board at church. All he’s missing is a boat. Not just any boat—a 2008 Bayliner 192.

When Reverend Daniel Glory announces that the Rapture is taking place on October 17 at 5:51am, Hogan realizes his boat–buying days are numbered. So he does what any man in his situation would do—he borrows a load of money from the mob.

Not that there’s any risk involved: After all, when the Rapture comes, Hogan will be long gone. The mob will never find him.

But when Jesus fails to come back on schedule, Mark Hogan finds the mob is in no mood to discuss the finer points of end–times theology...

Chris Well’s laugh–out–loud Christian thrillers appeal to the millions of readers who gobble up the rollicking crime fiction of Janet Evanovich and Elmore Leonard. TRIBULATION HOUSE does not disappoint!


Chris Well is a fellow member of the CFBA and founder of its sister organization, FIRST. He is an acclaimed novelist and award–winning magazine editor and has previously written the “laugh–out–loud Christian thrillers” Deliver Us from Evelyn and Forgiving Solomon Long(one of Booklist’s Top 10 Christian Novels of 2005). He has also contributed to 7ball, Infuze, and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. Chris and his wife live in Tennessee, where he is hard at work on his next novel.

The book link


The title of this novel is a bit deceiving--it sounds like some sort of weird horror tale. How far from the truth! This screams comedy from page one. Tribulation House is just a name for the interactive end-times multimedia presentation/witnessing tool the main character's church is putting on. The show is secondary. Mark Hogan's problems (presented in tongue-in-cheek fashion) resulting from the lack of a timely rapture dominate the book.

It's risky taking such serious spiritual matter and turning it into almost a farce. But Well came out the victor after walking such a fine line. The humor makes his points easier to swallow.

I also like how Well uses first person POV for the main character but switches to third for the other POV characters. It was very effective. I've not read a lot of crime fiction (or however one would classify TH), but I love Well's borderline irreverent style and engaging storytelling. A good read.


  1. Karri,

    I enjoyed your review of Tribulation House. It sounds like a very fun read! Does Mark ever consider taking legal action against the Reverend Daniel Glory? I should think that a couple of well-publicized real-life lawsuits against the Rev. Glory types might nip the endtimes hysteria/ fortunetelling in the bud. Thank you for sharing this book.

    BTW I tagged you over at The Christian Writer's Notebook. Why don't you drop by, read 8 Random Facts about me and tell me what you think!


  2. Hey, thanks for posting for CFBA...are you still posting for FIRST, I don't see any. Let me know.