Thursday, February 1, 2018

Book Review - The Liar's Gospel, by Naomi Alderman

An award-winning writer re-imagines the life of Jesus, from the points of view of four people closest to him before his death.
This is the story of Yehoshuah, who wandered Roman-occupied Judea giving sermons and healing the sick. Now, a year after his death, four people tell their stories. His mother grieves, his friend Iehuda loses his faith, the High Priest of the Temple tries to keep the peace, and a rebel named Bar-Avo strives to bring that peace tumbling down.

It was a time of political power-play and brutal tyranny. Men and women took to the streets to protest. Dictators put them down with iron force. In the midst of it all, one inconsequential preacher died. And either something miraculous happened, or someone lied.

Viscerally powerful in its depictions of the period - massacres and riots, animal sacrifice and human betrayal - The Liars' Gospel makes the oldest story entirely new.

Purchase links: Amazon/Book Depository/Kobo


The Liar’s Gospel was an interesting novel. It was written from different characters’ POV about Jesus, and the current Roman rule in Jerusalem and surrounding areas after his cruxifiction. From his mother’s eyes, to a High Priest, Judas and a few others, you really get a different picture of Jesus himself, and the conflict of those times.

Again, though this is not my intention, as with previous novels of this era and about Jesus that I have read recently, Jesus is depicted as a madman. Incredibly compassionate and sensitive, he was also described as very eccentric and prone to fits of anger, and it is a wonder how he captivated so many people and gathered such a following. But considering the turbulent times, people were really looking for someone to voice their rebellious thoughts and express their chaotic feelings.

As much as this book was about Jesus, it was also not. There was a lot of focus on the rebellion of the people against Rome and its forced Rule. Even though Rome was a tyrant in trying to cower the people, at the expense of so many lives, the people always seemed to rise up to rebel against it, no matter the cost. It was truly humbling and formidable to read about the strength of their faith in their fight for freedom.

It was an enjoyable read in that it kept me captivated, for it was a brutal, bloody story. There are not a lot of happy, fussy feelings in these pages, but it was incredibly interesting.
Happy Reading!
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Many thanks to Netgalley, Authors and Publishers for making copies available for review. No compensation was accepted and my opinions are 100% my own.

Author Bio:

Naomi Alderman (born 1974 in London) is a British author and novelist.

Alderman was educated at South Hampstead High School and Lincoln College, Oxford where she read Philosophy, Politics and Economics. She then went on to study creative writing at the University of East Anglia before becoming a novelist.

She was the lead writer for Perplex City, an Alternate reality game, at Mind Candy from 2004 through June, 2007.[1]
Her literary debut came in 2006 with Disobedience, a well-received (if controversial) novel about a rabbi's daughter from North London who becomes a lesbian, which won her the 2006 Orange Award for New Writers.

Since its publication in the United Kingdom, it has been issued in the USA, Germany, Israel, Holland, Poland and France and is due to be published in Italy, Hungary and Croatia.

Author Links: Goodreads

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