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The Bible – Book Review

Home > Everywhere > Spirituality | Self Help | Literary | Churches | Book Reviews
Published February 26th 2013
The 'how's and 'why's of the guy in the sky
Maiden clutching a bible while deferentially gazing skyward

There's one of them at every party – the guy whose stories are always bigger and better than everyone else's. If you ate four hamburgers in under a minute, he did five. If you climbed the Eiffel Tower, he scaled Mt Everest. If you survived a shark attack, he probably fought a bear.
If books went to dinner parties, the bible would be that guy.

Contrary to the belief I imagine someone somewhere has, the Bible wasn't written by Jesus. Its authors and edits are many and varied, though in defiance of the 'too many cooks' adage the overarching narrative is relatively stable. Before the advent of trilogies (think Lord of the Rings, Twilight), duopolies were in vogue, and a prime example of this is the bible. Here's the cheat sheet:

First half:
Multiple dramatis personae; lengthy backstories; flowery language. Perhaps the most famous scene is that of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, which he actually did twice, to great dramatic effect. This section also contains the legendary David and Goliath narrative, which speaks to the heart of contemporary 'Aussie battler' tropes.

Second half:
This centres on strapping lad by the name of Jesus, who despite a dubious birth works his way up to build an impressive resume, boasting – (modestly, of course) – extensive public speaking, alteration of the chemical structure of liquids, and mass catering. Protagonist endures a taxing series of events to eventually bestow upon future generations the wonders of Christmas and Easter, and in doing so changes the life of long weekends and Australia Post forever.

The Bible has a regular book club known as Mass, in which fans of the book gather together to celebrate its better points, tactfully ignore other parts, and warm their vocal chords with both song and wine. Fan-fic is discouraged under a condition known as Blasphemy, though impersonation of characters is not uncommon, particularly in re-enactments involving tea-towels and plastic dolls. As a gift, the Bible is an uncommon choice, mainly due to the fact that anyone who wants one will have one already, but if you do decide to bestow this volume upon a friend or relative there are a wide variety of editions from which to choose.

As a child, this was my go-to book when I'd run out of Enid Blyton and bookshelf pickings were slim – as such I've read it a few times. Highly original and meticulously detailed but lacking crowd-pleasing attributes such as humour and romance, I'd give it four stars, two thumbs up and some myrrh.
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Why? It's your (after)life
When: thousands of years ago
Where: Heaven, Earth, and the in-between bits
Your Comment
Best. Review. Ever.
by Carly Ogborne (score: 3|4626) 1618 days ago
I love it!
by Rebecca Bowyer (score: 2|231) 1562 days ago
A copy in every hotel room: most widely distributed book?
by Happy Mom (score: 2|548) 1560 days ago
Thanks for the love!
by Emily (score: 2|231) 1560 days ago
PS - Carly you should check out my review of the dictionary ;)
by Emily (score: 2|231) 1560 days ago
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