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Yet Crace is hardly the jeering materialist we might expect. As Jesus takes to his cliff-top cave, the author renders his religious transports without a hint of irony, and with a linguistic elegance that can hardly be called disrespectful: "The prayers were in command of him. He shouted out across the valley, happy with the noise he made. The common words lost hold of sound. The consonants collapsed. He called on god to join him in the cave with all the noises that his lips could make. He called with all the voices in his throat." And while most of the temptations of Christ are visited upon him by humans--by the motley crew of his cave-dwelling neighbors--he resists them with what we can only call superhuman will. Quarantine does, of course, operate on a fairly realistic plane. Jesus dies of starvation long before his 40-day fast is complete, and his fellow retreatants, who take center stage throughout much of the novel, are much too confused and brutal ever to figure in any Sunday school pageant. Still, Crace leaves at least the possibility of resurrection intact at the end, which should ensure that his brilliant book will rattle both believers and non-believers alike. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A fascinating retelling of Jesus' 40 days in the wilderness--or is it? To tell much about it would spoil it for anyone interested. Read morePublished 12 days ago by ilovevt
It has been awhile since I read this book but when I did, I remember that it was very different but good. A thought provoking book.Published 7 months ago by alicia loveland
A novel approach and beautifully written. Asks important questions of faith. But I'm a believer just the same.Published 7 months ago by crgardner
Hard to figure out what was in the author's head when this book was being written. Kind of a cross between historical fiction and a trashy novel. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Frequent Traveler
Crace has always been a favorite, and this unusual rendering of Christ's time in the desert is profoundly moving and deeply spiritual. Read morePublished 12 months ago by El Viejo Topo
Oh my. I am enjoying this book so much! I first fell in love with Jim Crace when I read Being Dead, and now this book equally enthralls me. Read morePublished 13 months ago by E. Holden
Jim Crace is certainly a powerful writer but some readers might find his intensity a bit hard going. Read morePublished 14 months ago by John Fitzpatrick
What if Jesus Christ spent some of his last time on earth on a pilgrimage with a killer, a beauty, and abused wife? Gripping story.Published 15 months ago by J. Adair
Was hard to read. Had some lovely passages but requires some patience and time. Musa is the best villain I've read in a long time. Truly unlike able.Published 19 months ago by Rorie