Book Reviews

That Other God

The 2022 edition may be purchased by check paid to David  Beasley and mailed to 7-190 Argyle St, Simcoe, ON N3y 0C1 Canada for $25 and $10 postage. For US residents please note stamps for Canada are costlier than for US postage.

The Mid-West Monthly Book Review, Small Press Bookwatch for June 2022 writes:Critique: A deftly crafted work of metaphysical fiction the novel includes such elements as mysticism, telepathy, collective unconscious, sufism, and global humanism, "That Other God" is extraordinary, entertaining, thought-provoking, and original work of fiction that is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists, as well as community, college, and university library collections.


Reviewed by Marcus van Steen, the Brantford Expositor

This is a compelling book, a cry for peace at a time of widespread anarchy and unfettered violence. The author, David Beasley, was born in Hamilton. After graduating from McMaster University he traveled widely in Europe, and spent two years teaching in Vienna, where this novel is set. The first character we meet is Abel Kingston, an English artist who is forced to teach English because he cannot sell his modernist paintings. The main character appears when Abel gives a young man shelter from the rain and finds that his name is Cain Brooks. Cain immediately refers to the Biblical story of Cain and Abel pointing out that Cain killed Abel. He proceeded to tell the story to a perplexed Abel, "Abel was the shepherd," he said, "and Cain was the tiller of the soil. When Cain brought the fruit of the field as an offering to the altar of God, he was dismayed that Abel had won God's special favor by laying the body of a slain lamb on the altar. Cain found it strange that God should prefer a slaughtered innocent body to the natural fruits of the land."

Holy Spirit

He went on to explain that he realized that this God was not the Holy Spirit he communicated with in the fields. "I do believe," he added, "that it is to save humanity from this blind worship of a false God that providence has brought us together. It is up to Cain and Abel to remold the world." This is the point where the story becomes really interesting and exciting. Cain gathers a handful of converts who accept his message and believe that if enough people embraced the great truth that God reveals himself in man's humanity, the world would be a gentler and happier place. Cain even recruits some Christian ministers who are won over by his argument that the organized churches through the centuries urged people to become saints and the more saintly they are the less human they become and the less tolerant and understanding. That, says Cain, is because they are serving a false god - "That Other God" of the title. Of course there is a great deal of other activity among the growing number of people who get involved with Cain and Abel. Cain gets married and his bride is underway to becoming a mother by the time the story ends. Abel becomes a popular preacher for the new Humanist Movement. He is also keen to marry, but his prospective bride feels she cannot leave her aged mother. But in the end it is Cain's vision of a peaceful and perfect world that is the dominant theme. At the end, there is the solace that another attempt next year might succeed. This is David Beasley's most important book since 1977 when his biography of Canada's first novelist, John Richardson, appeared under the title "The Canadian Don Quixote."


After his sojourn in Europe, Beasley served for some 30 years as research librarian for the New York Public Research Libraries. Now retired, he and his wife have returned to Canada and taken up residence in Simcoe. He says they both like it here and he hopes to have enough time to edit and publish a number of manuscripts he wants to work on

Marcus van Steen, the Brantford Expositor

As one reads this unusual book, one finds oneself continually challenged to wonder
what lies at the core of the spiritual degeneration of our time.

Stephen Beecroft, Stoney Creek News

I am now whirling into the 4th Chapter of "That Other God"—a terrific concept (a god for
Cain) and a philosophically challenging one. Absorbing. The gripping style, detailed
observation, poetic images (not the least of these making springing out of bed an erotic
act). I'm enjoying it immensely.

Peter Rankin, New York City.

Ideas about mob psychology, mysticism, telepathy, the collective unconscious, and
spiritual degeneration or spiritual rebirth are most often exchanged on university
campuses at some distance away. It is wonderful to hear them discussed among us by
so articulate a man as David Beasley.

Felix Douma, Port Rowan Good News.

This latest novel by the Canadian author of several books, including THE CANADIAN DON QUIXOTE, tells the compelling story of Cain, a young American poet and mystic, who struggles, and for a while with success, to unite the people of Austria and other European countries under the banner of the true God. This was not the god who rejected the offering of agricultural products by his Biblical namesake. The modern Cain is convinced that the established religions have made a mistake over the years by following Abel's God who preferred the slaughter of innocent life to the harmless fruits of nature. He enlists an English author, who also has a Biblical name "Abel," a Turkish dervish and others, to help him found a spiritualized humanistic movement called "spiritual purism."

 The author himself understands his work as being "a humanistic novel," and th protagonists strive to alert their followers to the saving values that lie deep within thehuman spirit and which can lead to the salvation of the world instead of the selfish individualistic concepts of salvation of those religions sympathizing with Able over the years.The novel's hero and mystic,Cain, promotes a brand of Spiritual Humanism that was even too spiritual for Abel and led to the latter's not unexpected demise but under interesting, but very different circumstances, than those in the Biblical account. The secular humanist reader might be somewhat uncomfortable with Cain's religious language, even though much of it is used symbolically Self-defeating ideologies and evil forces are at play throughout the book and become major stumbling blocks for Cain's in zealous attempt to promote his humanistic God. Raymond K. DeHainaut 3/24/95 



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