The Gospel According to the Son

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Ballantine Books, 1998 - Fiction - 249 pages
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For two thousand years, the brief ministry of a young Nazarene preacher has remained the largest single determinant of Western civilization's triumphs and disasters. Now, Norman Mailer has written a novel about Jesus's life. Is God speaking to me? Jesus asks. Or am I hearing voices? If the voices are from God, why has He chosen me as His son? And if they are not from God, then who gave me the power to perform these miracles?
It soon becomes evident that we are being told the story of a skilled and most devout carpenter who is living with prodigious questions. The result is an intimately readable account of a man thrust forward by the visions he receives, the sermons he offers, and the miracles he enacts until he comes to the apocalyptic end of his powers.
"The Gospel According to the Son" vividly recreates the world of Galilee and Jerusalem two thousand years ago. In a time of uneasy stability, the Holy Land is governed by a complacent but fearful establishment who rule over a despairing underclass -- it is a time of great change, open to comparison with our own. Mailer's signal accomplishment is to create for us a man wholly unlike others who is nonetheless filled with passion and doubt, strength and weakness; a protagonist divine and human, a son of God who shares our condition.
In "The Gospel According to the Son," one of America's greatest living writers has brought us a remarkable book -- by turns bold, thoughtful, poetic, tragic, passionate, and, to our surprise and pleasure, suspenseful.

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The Gospel according to the Son

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This novel is exactly what it sounds like: the gospel story retold from Christ's point of view. Although Mailer treats his New Testament sources with respect, Jesus turns out to be just the sort of ... Read full review

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About the author (1998)

Norman Mailer was born in 1923 in Long Branch, New Jersey, and grew up in Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Harvard, he served as a rifleman in the South Pacific during World War II. He published his first book, The Naked and the Dead, in 1948. THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO THE SON is his thirtieth book. Mailer won the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize in 1968 for The Armies of the Night and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize again in 1980 for The Executioner's Song. He has directed four feature-length films, was a co-founder of The Village Voice in 1955, ran unsuccessfully for mayor of New York in 1969, and was president of the American PEN from 1984 to 1986.

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