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Title: God on Trial Author: Sabri Bebawi Publisher: Create Space ISBN: 978-1491212035
Pages: 280, Paperback/Kindle
Genre: Mystery
Reviewed by: Lisa Brown-Gilbert, Pacific Book Review
Date Review Completed: September 17, 2013

Is it plausible to blame God for the abuses and ills that we may suffer in life, especially when it comes to the acts of those that follow the tenants and texts of religious worship. God on Trial, which is a dramatic fictional work by author Sabri Bebawi, not only addresses this question but also takes a delving look into the issue, from an interesting but disconcerting angle. Portrayed through the actions, thoughts, and circumstances of the protagonist Ė an unnamed 57-year-old English Professor and mediocre writer -who suffers from initially, undiagnosed schizophrenia. Finding himself at odds with the conditions of the world around him, He takes steps to start proceedings to impeach God in the International Court of Human Rights. He intended to prove his case by compiling a manuscript titled The Indictment of God filled with adverse religious doctrine inclusive of the three major faiths Judaism, Catholicism and Islamic. He determined that it was Godís fault the abuses and miserable conditions of man exist, including his own suffering. He saw God as the provocateur of such conditions by virtue of writings contained in various Holy books. He saw God much like a mafia boss - he gives the orders through various religious doctrines but does not get his hands dirty

He suffered through a rough childhood filled with numerous stressors; repeated illness, sexual abuse, a father lost to his vices, conflicts within family, government and religious institutions, and anxiety brought on by religious contentions (he was raised a Coptic Christian but forced to embrace the Islamic faith). Moreover, with repeated exposure to the most catastrophic sections of the Bible and the Quran, it created within him an unhealthy fear of God from a young age.

His suffering through these issues seemed to lend towards his illness running rampant within him

until, he began to portray dangerous outward signs of his disorder. Because, schizophrenia, affects the way a person thinks, feels and interacts with the world, this caused him to often lose touch with reality. Remaining immersed in his deluded abyss, he often interacted with people aloud in public, that did not exist, such as the lawyer, Juliana he requested assistance from, in order to prepare his case against God.

For the protagonist, things spiral so completely out of control that the lines between reality and his world become completely obscured leading to his wife being murdered, and ultimately his own demise as well. In an ironic twist, his grieving sister pays a loving tribute to him by picking up where he left off, pursuing the case against God.

This novel is a realistic depiction of the sad human condition that is the world today, as well as a heart-wrenching depiction of one humanís condition - the result of his contact with the people of Godís world. Overall, I found this to be a good read that held my interest; it presented a controversial subject matter in a unique way and contained some thought provoking points, about faith, worship and God. God on Trial is an out of the ordinary read that has great potential and I would recommend this book to readers that are looking to clarify the connection between the current state of the world and worshipping God.