Though this book was a little hard to get into at first due to the whole time travel thing, once I was into it, I was really into it. The fact that it...moreThough this book was a little hard to get into at first due to the whole time travel thing, once I was into it, I was really into it. The fact that it was set in Chicago and that one of the main characters is a librarian at the Newberry of all places, didn't hurt either. It's a story of friendship and love, which can be at times funny, at times touching and at others agonizing and though the ending leaves something to be desired, I still love it!(less)
**spoiler alert** Genre/Format: Fantasy/Graphic Novel Geographical Setting: Latin America, Space and U.S. Time Period: 16th c., 21st c. and unknown futu...more**spoiler alert** Genre/Format: Fantasy/Graphic Novel Geographical Setting: Latin America, Space and U.S. Time Period: 16th c., 21st c. and unknown future
Plot Summary: Tomas makes a promise to the woman he loves, Isabel, that they will be together forever. However, he finds himself reliving his life over and over again; first as a Spanish conquistador in the 16th century, then as a scientist in the 21st century. He is obsessed with immortality and fears death, while Isabel accepts it. The 21st century Isabel asks him to finish her book for her when she dies of cancer. The book is a retelling of their previous life together. Eventually, after dealing with his grief over the loss of his wife, Tomas realizes that his the only way he can break the cycle is to cease his quest for immortality and die. Upon his death he is reunited with his love for eternity.
Appeal: pace is deliberate, characters familiar, lifelike, introspective, sympathetic and realistic, plot is character centered, cinematic, complex, violent, inspirational, full of mythological/religious references (Tree of Life, Xibalba, etc.), with multiple plotlines, sexually explicit (within marriage), includes nudity, thought provoking, explicit language, illustrations are vivid, colorful and realistic.
Related Authors and Works (Fiction): Neil Gaiman-Sandman series which is a series of graphic novels of the fantasy genre which deal with human relationships and dreams/nightmares, Audrey Niffenegger – The Time Traveler’s Wife which deals with time travel and love, J.M. DeMatteis- Blood a Tale, which is another graphic novel illustrated by Kent Williams which intertwines two stories and philosophy.
Related Authors and Works (Nonfiction): Hans TenDam, Exploring Reincarnation which includes case histories, theories and social/religious beliefs about reincarnation, Thich Nhat Hanh, No Death, No Fear which illustrates Buddhist’s philosophy on death through anecdotes and advice, Bernal Diaz del Castillo, The Conquest of New Spain which is a firsthand account/history of the conquest of Mexico by Cortez. Popol Vuh, which is the Mayan “bible”, which includes their myths of creation, Xibalba, etc.(less)
Time Period: 1st c. A.D and 21st c. A.D Genre: Literary Fiction Geographical Setting: United States, Middle East, India and Asia Number of Pages:444
Plo...moreTime Period: 1st c. A.D and 21st c. A.D Genre: Literary Fiction Geographical Setting: United States, Middle East, India and Asia Number of Pages:444
Plot Summary: The angel Raziel is sent to modern day Earth to resurrect Levi, who is also known as Biff and was Christ’s best friend, so that he may write a gospel about the missing years of Jesus’ life. Upon his resurrection Biff is given the gift of languages by the angel, so that he has a wider vocabulary to draw from whilst writing his gospel; however he is confined to a hotel room, because Raziel doesn’t want him to know about the impact Jesus had. Soon the angel discovers a love for soap operas and Spider Man, leaving Biff to his writing. Biff starts out by relating his first encounter with Jesus and by clearing up the misnomer, Jesus’ real name being Joshua. He relates how difficult, yet fun it was being the messiah’s childhood friend. Eventually, as teenagers, the pair set off on an adventure to find the three wise men that were present at Joshua’s birth, so that Joshua might learn how to be the messiah. The first wise man they encounter is Gaspar, who teaches them about Lao Tzu and Confucius, the second is Balthazar, who teaches them Buddhism, and the third is Melchior who teaches them Hinduism. Once Joshua feels he knows how to be the messiah, he and Biff recruit disciples, who help them spread “the word” and the events of the last years of Joshua’s life unfold as Biff experienced them with his friend. Throughout their journey through life the two friends encounter quirky people, fall in love and have a series of crazy, hilarious and touching adventures.
Subject Headings: Jesus Christ-Fiction, Humorous fiction
Appeal: The pacing is dialogue driven, engrossing and relaxed. Characters are quirky/eccentric, yet familiar, recognizable and realistic. The storyline is layered with multiple plot lines, twists and contains some strong language and sex. It is written in an unpretentious, conversational style, with humor and magical/philosophical elements.
Similar Author’s and Works (Fiction): Anne Rice’s – Christ the Lord out of Egypt - a serious fictional account of Jesus’ life as a child from his point of view. Similar authors would be Robert Rankin and Tom Holt. Rankin is known for his bizarre/absurd worldview, puns and wordplay; a good title to begin with might be Armageddon the Musical, which is a futuristic account of Armageddon and theological warfare with a cast of characters including Elvis and Dalai Dan (the 153rd incarnation of the Lama). Tom Holt is known for his off-beat historical fiction and mixed up, humorous mythology; a good title to begin with might be Olympiad, a fictional history of the Olympics filled with misadventures.
Similar Author’s and Works (Non-Fiction): Living Buddha, Living Christ by Thich Nhat Hahn, shows the connections between Buddhism and Christianity through anecdotes, scripture and teachings from both traditions. The Nag Hammadi Library edited by James M. Robinson, is a complete collection of philosophic and religious texts discovered in 1945, including some Gnostic gospels. Other non-fiction works which might interest those wishing more to learn about the religions represented within Lamb are The Bible, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao Te Ching, and the Analects of Confucius.(less)
A riveting collection of short interviews with various people in a small Japanese village, which recount events from the early 19th century. Includes...moreA riveting collection of short interviews with various people in a small Japanese village, which recount events from the early 19th century. Includes interviews with a geisha, a member of the Yakuza, a fisherman, a farmer and more...(less)
The sometimes slow, but interesting look into 19th century Russia. It is the saga of 5 aristocratic families which covers their personal entanglements...moreThe sometimes slow, but interesting look into 19th century Russia. It is the saga of 5 aristocratic families which covers their personal entanglements, as well as the Napoleonic Wars in which some of them take an active part as soldiers. It is a tale of love, friendships, religion, honor, duty, treachery and revenge, in which Tolstoy takes a clear anti-war stance.(less)
Time Period: 18th c. Genre: Historical Fiction/YA Geographical Setting: Massachusetts
Plot Summary: Octavian is raised by the College of Novanglian Luc...moreTime Period: 18th c. Genre: Historical Fiction/YA Geographical Setting: Massachusetts
Plot Summary: Octavian is raised by the College of Novanglian Lucidity as an experiment in the development of the African child. Though he lives a strange life he and his mother are treated fairly by their master, Mr. 03-01. Octavian is a prince, his mother having been an African princess and as such, he is taught and treated as though he were royalty. However, when the college begins to lose funding they must turn to other benefactors, who change the course of the experiment, mistreating Octavian and his mother. Thus, Octavian learns of the tortures other Africans must live through when his mother is tortured and killed. He escapes his home, searching for freedom and learns more of the Revolutionary War, joining forces with a local militia.
Appeal: Told through a combination of Octavian’s journals, newspaper and journal clippings and letters in first person narrative. Characters are well developed and realistic. The setting was well researched and historically accurate for the most part. The tone varies depending on who is speaking to the reader, at times light and at times dark and disturbing. The story is filled with intrigue, mystery, adventure and horror/violence, as well as some humor. It has a happy cliffhanger ending, allowing the reader to decide what adventure Octavian and the doctor will embark upon next. (less)