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A Creed for the Third Millennium
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A Creed for the Third Millennium

3.28  ·  Rating details ·  813 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
Set in a near-future USA, this novel traces the progress of a truly good man from obscurity to worldwide fame. Dr Joshua Christian's work as a clinical psychologist daily presents him with bitter tableaux of a people spiritually impoverished by too much change: political, climatic, ideological. Joshua's deep compassion & extraordinary personal magnetism have created a ...more
Hardcover, 346 pages
Published 1985 by Harper & Row
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Jenna St Hilaire
Feb 29, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The difficulty in reading a 1985 sci-fi is that the turn of the millenium was such a big mythic deal leading up to it—but now that we’re twelve years in, it’s just not that different from the nineties. Which were different from the eighties primarily in having smaller hairdos and less neon and not quite so much disco.

That is to say, in 1985 it was comparatively believable that there might be an ice age early in the new millenium. Who knew what that dreaded ozone hole, caused by trillions of cans
Susan Stuber
Oct 02, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is some ambitious book. It is quite interesting to read it in 2016, thirty years after it was written in 1985. Set in 2043 America, McCullough uncannily foresees many of the issues that are so prominent today, such as climate change (though at that time it was thought the world would get colder, not hotter). Though she did not foresee the internet and smartphones, she does foresee the importance of computers. She foresees the energy crunch but does not foresee the new technologies such as s ...more
Mar 04, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Colleen McCullough fans
Shelves: favorites
Excellent novel!! A keeper to read again! It is almost like a Sci Fi novel. Mixed in the future of the world with an old time from centuries away.

Made me search for the real life of Jesus Christ. From what I've read, Christ wasn't his real name. Things got misinterpret by the Greeks. That's a different subject for another time.
Anybody else struck in the middle of the face by the similarities between the situation in this book and the current state of things? A debilitating environmental catastrophe (that we're slipping ever further into, no matter that the temperature abnormalities in the novel vs. reality have opposite tendencies), a (formerly) dangerously overcrowded planet, the general sense of downtrodden resignation to the interminable grayness of a darkly fading world, the meteoric rise to prominence of a beacon ...more
Jul 26, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was prepared not to like this book after reading some of the reviews. Some people said it was a "Big Brother" book but I did not find it that way at all. It is a story set in the future and the country is facing the beginnings of an ice age with sections of the population having to be seasonally relocated and facing the fact that soon they may need to be permanently relocated. In order to deal with the strain of increasing population at a time when living space is getting smaller, families are ...more
Bookish Enchantment
Essentially there is nothing wrong with this book - in fact it is very compelling and readable and as such deserves a 4 star rating.

However, in saying that I wonder what made Colleen write about such a religious event but duplicated in the future? It is not offensive in my mind but others who take the Christian religion seriously may see this book as blasphemy.

Others like me who are not so worried will find this an easy and entertaining read that will leave you feeling a trifle sad about the wor
Shirley Brown
Aug 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I quite liked this book, though it took me a long time to get into it. It has a very thought provoking plot and interesting story. Sort of a new Messiah in the future (2032). Book was written in 1985. Instead of climate warming, which we are experiencing now, the earth has returned to the beginnings of a new ice age. Pay attention to the names of the characters (at least most of them) as their names beome relevant later in the story.
Nov 04, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm sorry but I have not enjoyed a Colleen McCullough novel since The Thornbirds. This novel was rather hokey, very slow for the first 180 pages. I didn't like all the religious threads. The story line just seemed rather pointless. I would not recommend this novel. It has been on my shelf for 20 yrs probably. I should have got rid of it sooner.
Feb 17, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 12, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nobody
I picked this up because I loved two of her other books, but I really didn't like this one. I can't remember the ending, but I do remember hating it so much that I threw the book across the room -- something I had never done before or since!
Tracy Walters
Wow.......what can I say about this book.......except that it kept me going......made me sad......made me feel cold......made me feel as though I can survive life no matter how hard it gets. This book brought out a lot of emotions in me. I enjoyed reading it very much!

Aug 04, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recommendations
Dystopia at it's best!!!!!!
Dec 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this back in the early 80's. Very detailed. I could almost feel the cold. When everyone has been concerned about global warming, she wrote about another ice age coming and another messiah. Creative!
Jan Baugh
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a great read-although written 30+ years ago it felt like it could have been written today. Excellent plot.
Nélia Rosa
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Li nos meus tempos de liceu e lembro-me que gostei. Um dia, quem sabe, repito a leitura
Sep 19, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I usually like Colleen McCullough, but this one really wasn't what I was expecting. The book is set in the near future. The world climate is cooling and most Americans are being relocated to southern states. Unemployment and depression are rampant and most people are demoralized. (I love realistic futuristic books, especially with apocalyptic undertones, so I thought this would be good.) The US government wants to find a inspirational figure who will reinvigorate the people and boost morale. An ...more
Anna Engel
I love dystopian novels. I love Colleen McCollough's writing. Merge the two and you have a truly creative, truly believable story. It starts off rather slowly and takes a long time to get moving. It's not an action or romance novel; rather, it's a novel that explores the future and the problems the world's inhabitants face: overpopulation, limited energy resources, climate change (ice age), and global cooperation. It's not so much a story as it is an exploration into the human need for something ...more
M.A. McRae
Dec 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not many would remember, but in the 70s and 80s, we were being told there was to be a new Ice Age rather than global warming. This novel was published in 1985, and is set in the future – around 2024, by memory, when the climate has become much colder, areas have become uninhabitable, energy use strictly limited and a universal one-child policy is in force. The climate is still getting colder and life is grim.
New hope is needed and is found in the person of one man, Joshua Christian. Joshua is lo
Nov 04, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, dnc
This book has been on my bookshelf for years, and to date I've been avoiding it, but I decided to bite the bullet. Unfortunately it was as difficult as I thought it was going to be and ended up as a DNC.[return][return]The naming of the characters was unsubtle as a brick [the family being referred to as "the Christians"] as was the description of Joshua himself [32 year old male, virtually asexual, still living with his mother and just coming into his prime]. [return][return]By half way through ...more
May 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Decades ago I thought Colleen McCullough's "The Thorn Birds" was one of the best books I had ever read. The passion, longing, inner turmoil, and strong personalities were just so intense.

This book is so different yet so similar. No love story. Set in a bleak future, not the past. Continually hinting at something that will happen in the future.

The government tries to find an incredibly charismatic man to give hope to troubled, depressed populace that is facing the harsh realities of an ice age th
Carol Waters
Oct 19, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crap
Really disliked this one. Other than the heavy-handed religious fervor, compounded by the dismissal of a God who has a role in human affairs (VERY Presbyterian) she just failed the science test. An ice age in one generation? Why can't I just put on a coat... I mean, I go to Alaska every year and they seem to do OK up there with layers of clothing. We aren't scientifically adept enough to grow tomatoes in a greenhouse? And if the one child thing is by choice what is the big deal about having two? ...more
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I have had this book for years yet never read it. After reading it, I understood why I avoided it.

The actual writing is extremely strange. I have never read a book where so many people exclaimed all the time. People "roar" or "scream" during conversations. How excessive. If someone can use ten words instead of two, they'll use them. The dialog is stilted and almost old-fashioned, which is odd considering that the story is set in the future.

There were many scenes that dragged in corpse-like sulle
Feb 05, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of McCullough
I picked this book up because I've loved McCullough's past books - especially Ladies of Missalonghi. So far I'm not impressed.

The books is based on drastic climate change and 'national neurosis' over the difficulty of life under extreme rationing of heating fuel, forced relocation as the glaciers advance across the north of the country, and the effects of the one-generation old one-child doctrine. A new Messiah is sought, found, and exploited to give America hope in their future. The characters
Robert Boyd
Apr 20, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read this for a religion class this semester in college.

While I certainly thought she had an interesting way to create an allegory, I did not care for her writing at all. It felt like she was trying to force her authorial intent on the reader rather than presenting a story and letting the reader interpret it. For example (view spoiler)
J. Walker
I read this book originally in 1985, when it was new; I was working at WaldenBooks and did an employee-loan to read it. I was already an enormous Colleen McCullough fan, and found myself arguing with the - which, at the time was a good thing.
I picked it up a second time from the library, the last week of April - 31 years later - more for research than pleasure, and find how deeply this book sank into my psyche when I read it the first time.
But that is a tale for another time and place.
The messia
Jan 17, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
It's been awhile but I remember that I really liked this book but giving it 3 stars because of how much time has past.

Some say it's a big brother type book and a bit preachy but that didn't bother me. The world is cold and winter is seemingly never going away. People need someone, a saviour, to help them through this tough time. That man is found and he delivers speeches that instill hope and love. Very much a religious type book but I found it uplifting. I remember thinking that I wanted to be
Erik Graff
Dec 11, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: McCullough fans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: literature
I read this because I liked her First Man of Rome, my mother had liked The Thorn Birds and the novel's description made it sound like a science fictional messiah novel. It proved a great disappointment. First, there's no real science. Second, McCullough's writing style is not to my taste. Third, her messiah figure seemed rather hollow and vapid to me.

McCullough herself is a trained neurologist and one might presume that the interplay of the two doctors represents two aspects of herself. If so, i
J. Walker
This book changed for me, over time.
When I first read it, and got to the part where J.C. is recommended to "write a book", I spurned the entire premise, as if writing a book can change anything, change anyone, can accomplish anything "real". it was the '80s, I was in my 30s, what did I know?
Sometimes the allegory is a little too patently obvious, but she brings everything to the table, and doesn't disappoint.
Tara Mcknight
May 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have read this book several times and each reading finds more similarities with the situations we humans find ourselves presently in. Environmentally, ecologically, economically, and religiously we are grasping at straws and, even though this book is set in the turn of the Millennium, this book is a mirror held up to the issues of today.
Shelly N
Neither loved it nor hated it. Unlike another reviewer, I did not feel compelled to throw it across the room when finished. I think it could have been fleshed out more at the end. I am a believer of Jesus, and I was not offended by the book. But I could tell less than an 1/8 of the way through where this was going. It certainly was no Thorn Birds however.
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Colleen Margaretta McCullough was an Australian author known for her novels, her most well-known being The Thorn Birds and Tim.

Raised by her mother in Wellington and then Sydney, McCullough began writing stories at age 5. She flourished at Catholic schools and earned a physiology degree from the University of New South Wales in 1963. Planning become a doctor, she found that she had a violent aller
More about Colleen McCullough...
“But work used to be the lot of every man, and now it is rapidly becoming an aristocratic privilege. Men nowadays are more often paid not to work.” 2 likes
“Os nossos filhos e os seus filhos e todas as gerações vindouras têm de ser fortes. Têm de ser educados de molde a terem orgulho dos seus próprios feitos e do seu próprio trabalho árduo; não devem ser educados para descansarem sobre os louros dos pais.” 1 likes
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