Thursday, January 13, 2011
The member who picked our book this month wanted something funny after all the dark, heavy reads we've had. She just couldn't resist the subtitle The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal.
Short Summary: Biff is brought back from the dead 2000 years after the death of Christ to tell his version of Jesus' life. After all, the gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke and John only cover his birth, one incident at 12, his short ministry and his death. What the happened the rest of the time? Biff is here to tell us.
The Group's Verdict: This novel was a chunkster, so guess who was the only member of the book club to read it all the way to the end? Yep, that would be me. Soo...our discussion was mainly me talking about what happened in the book and the rest of the group members explaining why they only got 10/40/250/400 pages in or didn't start it at all.
Moore writes in his afterward (in my version anyway) that he thinks the people who would "get" the references the best (because they know the Bible) are the very people who would refuse to read it because it is sacreligious. None of my book club members were this type of person, however. Most of them are simply new moms with little time.
I am a Christian (a Baptist even) and I had no problems reading this. I know it's fiction. Moore is not trying to sell these events as "gospel truth". I know a lot of people that would have problems reading this though. I just thought it was a clever story, written in an engaging manner (I didn't skip over anything - yay). The first half was more detailed while the second half was more rushed, almost as if Moore suddenly got tired of the story and just wanted to get it over with. But I liked it. And I think it would be a good book to discuss with a book club. You know, if they all actually read the book.
Up Next: THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN by Garth Stein - which is a book I would NEVER in a zillion years choose for myself. (Race car driving? Dog narrator? Saintly husband with a wife dying of cancer? Ummm..no thanks.) So, we'll see how this goes!