John: A Novel
At a time when Americans remain skeptical about religion but still thirst for spiritual fulfillment, Niall Williams's extraordinary and masterful new novel reveals a universally appealing message of hope and love.
In the years following the death of Jesus Christ, John the Apostle, now a frail, blind old man, lives in forced exile on the desolate island of Patmos with a small group of his disciples. Together, the group has endured their banishment, but after years awaiting Christ's return, fissures form within their faith, and, inevitably, one of John's followers disavows Christ's divinity and breaks away from the community, threatening to change the course of Christianity. When the Roman emperor lifts the banishment of Christians, John and his followers are permitted to return to Ephesus, a chaotic world of competing religious sects where Christianity is in danger of vanishing. It is against this turbulent background-and inspired by Jesus's radical message of love and forgiveness-that John comes to dictate his Gospel.
Immensely impressive-and based on actual historical events-John is at once an ambitious and provocative reimagining of the last surviving apostle and a powerful look at faith and how it lives and dies in the hearts of men.
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Amphipolis Antichrist Apostle Apostle's asks Auster believe beloved disciple blind blue boat bowed breath bring brother calls cave Cenon chest Christians comes cries crucifixion Danil dark dead death Diotrophes disciples Divine dust dwelling Ephesus Eucharist eyes face faith fall Father fear feels fish follow forward gone hand head hear heard heaven holds Ikaria Ioseph island Jesus of Nazareth John says John stands Judea kneels Lazarus Lemuel light Linus lips live looks Lord Jesus Master Matthias says Matthias's Meletios Messiah mind mouth move night Papias says Papias thinks Papias's Patmos pause pray prayer Prochorus rises robe rock Samaria sand seabirds shoulder silent Simon Simon Peter sits speak spirit stands steps stone stop storm tell thin told touches truth turns voice wait walked watch waves wind woman words youth Zebedee