Thursday, August 19, 2010


Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 245
Series : Canongate Myth Series
Format : Fiction Novel
Reason for Reading : 10 10 10 Challenge

Another in the Canongate Myths series and this time it is Phillip Pullman taking on Christianity. It is a retelling of the life of Jesus Christ with the twist that Jesus and Christ are actually twin brothers. It begins with their conception and the idea is proposed that their father is a boy from the village posing as an angel. This is left up to the reader to decide and from there the boys grow up with very different personalities.

Lots of key events from The Bible are described but with the two boys taking on different characters. It goes right through to the death of Jesus on the cross and his resurrection as Christ and puts a whole new spin on some of the most famous stories ever told. It addresses some of the issues with the way the stories of Jesus were recorded and how they are open to misinterpretation.

It was an interesting read and it’s a shame so many seem to have got bogged down in whether it is blasphemous or not. Being part of the myths series rather than in the religious section along with copies of The Bible and Qu’arn etc, I feel that it is irrelevant whether people are offended or not. It’s Pullman’s fictional take on the stories as an artist and author and it poses some very interesting questions like many good books. It’s not anti-Christian, but it is very clearly anti-Church. Sometimes you do have to wonder though has Pullman written this just to live up to his reputation of being controversial as obviously he knew the types of response such a novel would elicit.

4 comments:

Ladytink_534 said...

Oh interesting. I've never heard of something like this before.

Sarah Dickson said...

aw thats such a sweet picture :) hope you have a good weekend!

Bellezza said...

The thing that comforts me, because I do take these kinds of books rather personally, is that they're found in the Mythological section instead of the Religion section. Just like The Da Vinci code being found in the Fiction corner. Great book, just not exactly accurate in its portrayal.

Nymeth said...

I don't think Pullman has it in him to simply be a provocateur, and he doesn't strike me as someone who enjoys controversy for its own sake. It seems to me that his reputation is more a result of him caring about these things and not being afraid to speak his mind.