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Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard gets a refreshingly clear and concise introduction in this latest book from Vardy, author of three The Puzzle of... books (God; Sex; Ethics). The author's skill as a teacher is apparent, as he manages not only to render the themes and intellectual characteristics of Kierkegaard's theology accessible to general readers but also to elicit sympathy for the occasionally off-putting and morose Dane. Dedicated to "that solitary individual" to whom Kierkegaard aimed his own writings, this book makes the 19th-century philosopher's explanation of a faith lived in the face of the absurdity of the incarnation engaging and sensible. Some thoughtful Christians will find it inspiring. Drawing from a variety of Kierkegaard's writings, Vardy shows how Kierkegaard's principled and uncompromising definitions of truth and sin, his understanding of the function of suffering and his view of love and the God-relationship are all crucial to understanding the Danish thinker's intellectual arguments and personal sense of purpose. Although this introduction cannot treat Kierkegaard's works exhaustively, it succeeds in making his key ideas come to life and gives the primary sources valuable context. (Dec.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.