Sunday, January 24, 2010

Book Review: Confessions of a Tax Collector

I meet once or twice a year with my financial advisor, and we started swapping books in our meetings. Last year I gave him Tim Keller's The Reason for God and he almost didn't give it back he liked it so much. He said he was getting his own copy for his personal library. He loaned me Predictably Irrational which I'd never heard of and probably never would have picked up myself. I thought it was fascinating. It made me rethink some common sense concepts.

This past week my advisor loaned me Confessions of a Tax Collector: One man's Tour of Duty Inside the IRS by Richard Yancey, another book I never would have picked up to read on my own. It is a fictionalized account of the actual experiences the author had working as a revenue officer inside the IRS. I read almost exclusively non-fiction, and while this book is based on a real life experience, it reads like a novel. I also primarily read books on Christian faith and theology, but this book is a dive into the bowels of the Byzantium known as the IRS.

There were several places in the book where Yancey goes into this stream-of-consciousness yammering that I ended up skipping over, but for the most part he weaves an interesting story. Still, I'm much more a fan of another author by the same last name (no relation), Philip Yancey. "Confessions" is interesting if you've ever wondered what the IRS looks like on the inside, and it kept my attention to the end and was entertaining, but it really didn't make me think--other than realizing I want to have as little contact as possible with the IRS, and I certainly wouldn't want to work there.

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