The Search for God and Guinness by Stephen Mansfield: Book Review

by Adam Clarke

Note: Disclosure of Material Connection: This book was received free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program.

To be honest, when I saw The Search for God and Guinness on Thomas Nelson’s Book Sneeze program, I was a little skeptical. I had no idea the social impact that the Guinness family had on society, nor did I know the strong moral code their company would portray to, first, the people of Dublin and eventually, the world. I thought the title was very fitting for the book as it is a strong historical look at the family, the role God played in their lives, and Mansfield’s own search for answers.

What I found unique about this historical look at Arthur Guinness and the Guinness family is the strong teaching of influence and good actions, along with a strong calling from God that goes beyond family: it impacts society as a whole. They knew they had the means to help Dublin, so they put their wealth to work by improving Dublin, its people, and its image.

However, my favorite “sticking point” of the story is the role of apprenticeship. You see that through the Guinness’ line, great men didn’t just happen. They were given the support, trust, knowledge, and experience of the older generation, so that they could excel and continue the good work God had blessed them with. They exemplify what many fathers today are attempting to do – teach their children quality lessons. The only problem is many times fathers today forget the key component of time and energy. The Guinness men had plenty of patience to pass on these traits.

I did find the book very difficult to focus on at times. It came across as a history text, more often than not. As one with a history major, I loved the historical lineage and facts about the Guinness clan, but if there is no historical interest in the reader’s hearth, this could be a tough book to make it through.


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