Elizabeth's Reviews > The Book of Longings

The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd
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really liked it
bookshelves: 2021-tbr, books-about-faith

** spoiler alert ** 4.25 stars

Wow. This was such a beautifully written story about the fictional wife of Jesus, Ana. We follow mostly her life and events, and of course her marriage to Jesus. Being a Christian myself who has adhered to the belief that Jesus was celibate, I was hesitant to read this book though it had been recommended to me. I actually read the Author's Note when I was about 1/3 of the way through, and then again after I finished it. This book really does focus on the humanity of Jesus, and weaving in Ana's story throughout a well-known and -accepted narrative (the canonical Gospels).

Two things that I did not like: 1) the nickname Jesus bestows on Ana - Little Thunder - it just seems weird and out of place. I don't doubt a nickname, I just don't like that particular one. 2) Ana's character is very smart, cunning, and sometimes downright selfish. I realize that women in those times needed to be selfish as a form of self-preservation and survival. But I particularly don't like how she took her former servant-turned-"brother" Lavi away from his wife for her own benefit - to get back to Jerusalem after spending two years away in Egypt. The way she talks to his wife, Pamphile, about how she was separated from Jesus for two years, so a few more weeks should be nothing for Pamphile and Lavi is just mean and denounces Pamphile's feelings.

But all in all, I think as time goes on in my own spiritual journey, I will credit this book, though fiction, with helping me to restore my faith from a new perspective.
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Reading Progress

September 25, 2020 – Shelved
September 25, 2020 – Shelved as: to-read
December 30, 2020 – Started Reading
December 31, 2020 –
page 15
3.61% "Absolutely beautiful writing."
December 31, 2020 – Shelved as: 2021-tbr
December 31, 2020 –
page 55
December 31, 2020 –
page 110
December 31, 2020 –
page 190
45.67% "I wasn't quite sure about this book as it's about Jesus' fictional wife, but it's so beautifully written with such a nice flow that I can't stop reading it."
January 1, 2021 –
page 288
January 1, 2021 – Shelved as: books-about-faith
January 1, 2021 – Finished Reading

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