by Tamela Hancock Murray
This is entirely an opinion, but in my reading of general market fiction versus Christian fiction, I have noticed one key difference:
The protagonists don’t have to be moral.
In Christian fiction, the protagonists must be moral or have a great desire to be moral at their core, even though they may make mistakes.
Christian fiction offers a Christian world view. The characters’ circumstances test their moral fiber. Readers want to see how the characters deal with their situations and trials, and the resulting consequences. Whether or not the characters experience a happy ending will depend a lot on the genre and story itself, but the characters should grow in and/or find sustenance in their faith.
In general market romance fiction, the characters can be of any faith or no faith. More likely than not, the issue of the characters’ faith won’t be visited at all or might be explained or dismissed in a phrase. Often, the characters are swept up in circumstances they must overcome, but they won’t draw upon religious faith to solve their problems. Their solutions may or may not reflect a moral choice. More likely they will reflect the necessary choice to their survival.
When I read about amoral protagonists, I appreciate belonging to a loving God all the more.
Are you comfortable reading books with amoral protagonists?
What, if anything, do you think Christians can learn from reading books with amoral protagonists?