GK Chesterton’s The Man Who Was Thursday begins as a clever mystery in which Syme, a police officer, attempts to infiltrate and expose a group of anarchists led by a powerful and mysterious leader named Sunday. Syme gains access to the group posing as the man called Thursday. Slowly the detective unravels the truth about the anarchists and discovers at the center of the chaos is Sunday. Syme’s investigation of the terrorists becomes less about uncovering the evil within the organization and more about the philosophical underpinnings of apparent chaos as is juxtaposed with law and order.
As Syme investigates each of the other men he discovers that there are other detectives in the mix. Each character is revealed to represent a certain philosophical leaning and approach to discovering the truth. Soon the reader finds that the masters of law and order are being guided into a vast and chaotic web of exploration that reveals the nature of man and of God.
All the efforts of Syme prove to be an exercise in futility and disorder. Surprisingly the masters of order find themselves running from the law in a wild pursuit to catch Sunday. In the end the reader is drawn into an introspective challenge in which we are forced to answer what our opinions are about God and who He is. In final estimation the only true anarchist is revealed and Syme is confronted with a remarkably ordered leader.
This book is an enjoyable read that leads to deep thoughts of theology. If you need a good fiction read, this is a great one.