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"Sweet Caress" by William Boyd
In Sweet Caress, Amory Clay comes wondrously to life, her vibrant personality enveloping the reader from the start. And, running through the novel, her photographs over the decades allow us to experience this vast story not only with Amory's voice but with her vision. Learn more
'Simple and powerful' Scotsman
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
About the Author
Lloyd Cassel Douglas (1877-1951) began his writing career in midlife, after working for many years as a minister. He gained international fame with his novels Magnificent Obsession 91929) and The Robe (1942).
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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As a classic many recognize in the movie version, I'd have to say to anyone that has seen the movie and not read the book, you're missing a lot. The movie is a cheap imitation of a novel that sucks you in from page one and doesn't let go until the end. Rarely do I read a book more than once ... I have read this book several times. Some authors have the inherent ability to draw you into the world they've created. Some authors possess the uncanny talent to make you really know the characters - love them or hate them. Some authors can make you feel as though you're walking side by side with the characters, living with them and enduring their emotions, seeing the things that they see. Some authors just have IT, and Lloyd C. Douglas is one of them.
The sweeping pageantry of one man's quest to find truth in a world corrupted is a quest that will stay with you long after the final page has been turned. Without giving too much away, the quick synopsis would be this: The story begins with Marcellus Gallio, the son of the rich Roman Senator Marcus Lucan Gallio, being commissioned to take command of the Roman fort at Minoa (Gaza). His trusted slave and friend, Demetrius, makes the journey with him, and they find at the fort a desolate scrap of land and a group of ruthless ruffians who don't take kindly to leadership. Marcellus takes firm control at Minoa, and it is from here that he and Demetrius end up in Jerusalem during Passover. It is at this particular Passover that Jesus is tried under Pontius Pilate and crucified. The detachment from Minoa, lead by Marcellus, is ordered to execute Jesus. During the Crucifixion, the officers get drunk to avoid the harsh reality of the task they've been assigned. They start to gamble and at one point, they gamble for Christ's robe.Read more ›
Lloyd C. Douglas' The Robe has become my favorite book. I came upon the book quite by accident a few years ago, and I have since read it 3 times. This book is not just a great religious novel, it is a great novel. Even if the reader is not a Christian, he/she will find it hard to put down. The reader is drawn in from the very first paragraph. Douglas certainly has a knowledge of ancient Rome and Judea, and he uses historical references to great effect. The characters are some of the most richly crafted I have ever read. The tale works on many levels: a love story; a tale of suspense; a tale of political intrigue; and, ultimately, a triumph of the human spirit and the power of personal redemption. For those without a clear view of Chritianity (which is easy to understand these days), this book is for you. While a novel, this book is probably a fairly accurate portrayal of the early Jesus movement in Judea and in Rome. This book should be on every bookshelf.
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'And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots' Matthew 27:35 One day in March, I was completely bored to death. My Grandma, tired of seeing me mope about, told me to get interested in a good book. Having no good books to read I told my Grandma to pick one out for me. She casually told me that The Robe was a good book and told me to find it off of the shelf that held all of her books that she got from The Peoples' Book Club. It had beautiful illustrations. I sat down to read it and from the first page I was immediately hooked. That was in the year 1997. It is the year 2000 now and ever since then I have read The Robe 3 times and am in the middle of reading it again. It is the most enduring story of Marcellus Gallio, a wealthy Tribune and son of a senator in ancient Rome. When he is ordered to put a man he knows is not guilty to death by crucifixion, he goes insane. Marcellus is accompanied in this story by the tragic Demetrius, his slave, and Diana, the woman he loves and a niece to the Emperor. Marcellus, after being healed, goes on a quest to learn of the mysterious man he put to death. And discoves he is not dead at all. This book takes 508 pages to unfold. But it is told with such mesmerising characters and such keen historical detail that you wish it would never end.
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Marcellus, a young and entitled Roman Tribune during the reign of Tiberius insults a social better and is sent to Judea as punishment to command a remote outpost. While stationed there, he travels to a festival in Jerusalem, and his detail of Legionnaires is required to execute a Galilean troublemaker. Marcellus wins the convict's robe in a dice game, but upon wearing it for the first time, is strangely changed forever. What follows is Marcellus' seemingly inexplicable compulsion to understand and know the man whose robe he had won. Wandering in the Holy Land, he discovers more than he ever imagined about Jesus of Nazareth and the small-but-growing community of belivers in His prophesied Kingdom. Marcellus and those around him come to understand the promises and prophesies of the crucified Christos and await his return. As history records, however, not all around him share his profound faith. My father told me about this book after he had given me a copy of another of Douglas' famous books, The Magnificent Obsession. I was truly enthralled by the vivid descriptions and characters. The story gives a depth to early Christianity which I had never known before. The book is written in a literary style that is unusual and somewhat unfamiliar to audiences of the current day, but I found that its unrushed elegance gave every page a quiet dignity that fit perfectly with the book's subject matter. I would not hesitate to recommend this book to anyone. This story was made into a movie (a modest testament to its power) in 1953 and was the first movie filmed in CinemaScope.
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