November 21, 2013 at 12:12 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , )

I may not have read the book club book but I have spent the last few weeks reading Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal.  This was written by Christopher Moore and was recommended to me by a friend.  I usually enjoy her suggestions so I grabbed it from the library and dove right in!

If you’ve ever wondered how Jesus fed all those people on a few loaves of bread and some fish, this is the book for you.

Anyone who has really studied the Bible knows that there is a huge gap in the timeline in regards to the life of Jesus.  Essentially, something like 30 years go by without being accounted for.  This book takes a humorous approach to those missing years and tells what happened during that time from the point of view of the guy who grew up being best friends with Jesus.  Obviously it’s all entirely fiction (and some would say the same of the Bible, but that’s a different topic altogether) and the story is told in good fun, without taking itself too seriously.  The narrator starts off the book being brought back from the dead 2000 years after he died by an angel so he could write this new gospel, since all of the other ones missed those years entirely.  According to Biff, he and Jesus left home around age 13 to hang out and learn from the three Magi who came to Jesus when he was born.  They spent time doing everything from learning ancient Buddhist secrets in the far East to hanging out with half a dozen Chinese concubines while being fed dates and figs.  Well, Jesus never did that but Biff was all about it.  See, one of the best parts about the book is just how different the two friends are.  Jesus is well…Jesus, and while he gets into some trouble and has the same temptations that all kids do, he’s genuinely a good guy who wants to make the world a better place.  Duh, he’s Jesus.  Biff is a little more vulgar and can enjoy those temptations without worry.  He sleeps around, talks about masturbation, beats people up with the kung-fu skills he learned in the East and has no problem telling Jesus about all the stuff he’s missing out on.  Mary Magdalene is there too (affectionately known as Maggie) and the little love/friend triangle the three have going on throughout the book is pretty entertaining.  We also get to meet all of the Apostles and the personalities that Moore gives them were colorful and inventive.  Many famous scenes from the Bible are also elaborated up, such as the whole walking-on-water incident, the time that Jesus washed everyone’s feet and the night that Jesus turned the water into wine.  Of course, the book ends as we all know it does but there are still some twists and turns that I appreciated.  And yes, I may have shed a tear before I closed the book for good.

Now, I was raised Catholic and went to Catholic school.  I understand how a depiction of Jesus getting drunk and spewing over the side of a camel could piss off some religious types.  I can see how some would find this book blasphemous or insulting.  Personally, however, I found it really entertaining and a fun read.  It’s not something that’s going to be for everyone but what would be the fun in that?  It gave me a new perspective and honestly made me want to re-read some biblical passages so I’d say I got a lot out of it.  If you think it sounds funny rather than damning, pick it up and give it a read!


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