Review of the book, God Collar

Book Review – God Collar by Marcus Brigstocke
by Ben MacNair
Transworld Publishing – ISBN 978-0-593-06736-9
Marcus Brigstocke is a well known comedy face on Television, a well known comedy voice on Radio, and God Collar is his examination of religion, and how religion can relate to his world.
Anyone who is familiar with Brigstocke’s media work will find themselves a home in this thoughtful and well written book, which questions religion and faith. It is not just Christianity that is under inspection, but also the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church, Judaism, Islam, Humanism, and Buddhism. We look at the beliefs of practitioners, and the influence that religion has had on the world.
This is the book of a tour that asked the same questions, so it skips from idea to idea quite quickly, and news stories and other books mean that the book is firmly placed in a certain time frame. As well as taking on religion, he also takes on the likes of Richard Dawkins, and although he is an affirmed Atheist, he still looks for the comfort that faith and a belief system that the church can provide.
He looks at the difference between people and their beliefs, as well questioning  some of the more extra-ordinary chapters and episodes from the more important religious tomes. He looks at the differing attitudes in the Old Testament and New Testament, and points out some of the crueller aspects of God’s personality that many of the faithful seem willing to over-look.
Religious Fanatics will find cause to complain about this book, and sometimes the humour is a bit too close to the bone, but this is a well researched book, fluidly written, and feels at times more like a conversation than a read, and it will make many people, regardless of their faith question their own assumptions.

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