Read this in college. It was a real eye-opener to me, who was raised Catholic and unfamiliar with the feminine in religion, particularly feminine aspe...moreRead this in college. It was a real eye-opener to me, who was raised Catholic and unfamiliar with the feminine in religion, particularly feminine aspects of the Deity which retain sexuality (as opposed to being sexless or celibate). Very interesting read. I'd recommend it for any woman looking to find a sacredness she can better identify with in conventional religions.(less)
This book is split into two parts ~ the beginning is a novel of a "modern day Mary" who is called to God through the help of a young, charismatic prie...moreThis book is split into two parts ~ the beginning is a novel of a "modern day Mary" who is called to God through the help of a young, charismatic priest. While the story was well-written, I thought the priest's comparison to Christ was heavy-handed. By the time I read the first part, I didn't even want to continue the rest of the book.
The second part of the book is very thick reading on deciphering who Mary Magdalene was from Biblical texts. Unfortunately, Mary was a common name in Biblical times and there are seven different Marys mentioned throughout the New Testament. The author's argument that early church fathers combined most of the Marys into the person we know as Mary Magdalene is presented well and appears to be rooted in fact.
The problem for me was that the second part of the book, which I thought would be what I'd like best, turned out to be overly religious and not as scholarly as I had hoped. In the end I only gave the book one star because I didn't like the ending of the first part and I didn't bother finishing to read the second part. I'm hoping other books on Mary Magdalene will be easier to digest and not so cloying on the author's personal religious beliefs.(less)
**spoiler alert** I enjoyed the thriller aspect of this book, but have to admit the message at the end is a little heavy handed. I felt hit over the h...more**spoiler alert** I enjoyed the thriller aspect of this book, but have to admit the message at the end is a little heavy handed. I felt hit over the head with the author's personal views on gene manipulation. Still, it was a good read and kept me turning the pages. Peretti is almost the Stephen King of Christian fiction.(less)
I read this in high school, but not FOR school. The advanced English class was reading it; we were stuck with "Medea." My best friend was in the advan...moreI read this in high school, but not FOR school. The advanced English class was reading it; we were stuck with "Medea." My best friend was in the advanced class and complained bitterly about Dante's "Inferno," but the more she told me about the book, the more I wanted to read it. So I asked the professor for a copy and loved it. I guess it just goes to show how one student can enjoy the same book another hates simply because she wasn't forced to read it.(less)
I really enjoyed this and literally couldn't put it down. At the end, I couldn't read fast enough to finish it. Much better than "The Da Vinci Code" i...moreI really enjoyed this and literally couldn't put it down. At the end, I couldn't read fast enough to finish it. Much better than "The Da Vinci Code" in my opinion, and I loved the twists that kept the story changing up until the very end.(less)
I had heard this story before as an e-mail forward, so I was surprised and curious to read it in book format. I don't know how "traditional" a folktal...moreI had heard this story before as an e-mail forward, so I was surprised and curious to read it in book format. I don't know how "traditional" a folktale this could be since it's a Christian-based story and most of our traditional folktales transcend Christianity (I know, I took a class on Folklore and Myth in college ~ I took a lot of neat classes as an English major).
In a nutshell, this is a story of three trees who desire to be used for a different (yet grand and noble) purpose, and each is used in some way to help Jesus Christ while he's alive. Now maybe I'm a cynic, but I can't help but wonder about trees who wish to be killed and made into boats or a manger or a cross. I mean, seriously, think about it for a minute. If a living creature such as a tree had hopes and desires, would it want to be killed? If I were a tree, my one desire would be to avoid the axman's blow at all cost. I'd want to grow strong and tall and big, stretch my branches out beneath the sun, grow my fruit and feel the wind through my leaves. Not get hacked down and used as mere wood.
Maybe I'm thinking into it too much. I recognize this is a feel-good type of story that gives warm fuzzies to any number of Christians out there, and it will live on indefinitely as long as there is at least one person in the world who continues to blindly forward such e-mail messages to everyone in their address book. The language is simplistic and the story's heart very easy to see, so this may appeal to young children more than tree-huggers like me.(less)
Excellent book, well-told, and very informative. I knew very little about the history of Mormonism before reading this. Krakauer is easily one of my a...moreExcellent book, well-told, and very informative. I knew very little about the history of Mormonism before reading this. Krakauer is easily one of my all-time favorite authors, and he never disappoints!(less)
Do people give religious books higher ratings because they really enjoyed reading them or because they don't want to be penalized by the Almighty when...moreDo people give religious books higher ratings because they really enjoyed reading them or because they don't want to be penalized by the Almighty when they die for not giving the Bible five stars on a review site?
I received this Bible as a senior in high school and yes, I've read it cover to cover. This being a Catholic version, there are additional books included which other Christian denominations don't consider part of the traditional canon. The translation is very straight-forward and easy to read (definitely not your high-brow King James' version). My copy is heavily marked up ~ an old friend once told me "a dinged up Bible is a sign of someone who isn't."
One thing I really appreciate about this version is the footnotes included throughout the text. In addition to clarifying some of the translations and referencing related passages, these footnotes also mention the original text which referred to the story or passage in the first place. This came in very handy for me when I took several classes on the Bible in college and could use my own copy for exams. Who had to memorize which sections in the book of Luke were taken from a source known only as Q when the footnotes in my Bible pointed these out?(less)
From the back cover: Though as naturally elegant as any queen, Tuya came as a teenaged slave to Potiphar's household, a personal gift from the mighty...moreFrom the back cover: Though as naturally elegant as any queen, Tuya came as a teenaged slave to Potiphar's household, a personal gift from the mighty Pharaoh. Tall and slender, the young girl had eyes that shone like a stream of gold in the fading light, and her face was as perfectly chiseled as the statues in the finest temples. She knew nothing of her past, except that she had always been a slave.
Another young slave came to Potiphar, purchased from traveling Midianites. Though stained with dust and fatigue, Joseph seemed lighted from within. Indomitable pride was carved into that handsome face, along with intelligence and hard-bitten strength. If harnessed properly, Potiphar envisioned that this lad would pull more than his share of the work load.
In the household of the captain of Pharaoh's guard, Tuya and Joseph come to share their dreams of better things-of freedom-and of love. But as quickly as their destinies seem to entwine, they are torn apart. Will the dreams they share destroy them both?
My comments: I read this years ago and loved it. You'll recognize Joseph as Jacob's son, he of the technicolor dreamcoat, who was beaten by his brothers for being his father's favorite and then sold as a slave. The Christian Bible tells us that after interpreting Pharaoh's dreams of famine, he managed to save the Egyptians from starvation through a long drought. When they heard that Egypt wasn't suffering like the other lands, Joseph's brothers traveled to beg for food. Unknowingly, they were brought before Joseph, who tested them to make sure they weren't the same hateful men they used to be. This novel, however, is set shortly after Joseph's slavery begins, and ends right when his brothers appear, so that it fills in the gaps not in the Bible. Well-written and intriguing, this book isn't overly religious, though Hunt is a Christian novelist. When I read it, I thought it was amazing.(less)