Sunday, July 26, 2009

Book Review: Good Book

Title: Good Book: The Bizarre, Hilarious, Disturbing, Marvelous, and Inspiring Things I Learned When I Read Every Single Word of the Bible
Author: David Plotz
Rating: ***1/2
Tags: bible, old testament, tanakh, judiasm, agnosticism

Author Plotz writes for Salon, and this book began as a blog, called Blogging the Bible. Like The Year of Living Biblically, it is written by a Jewish man raised non-observant who gets curious about the Bible and decides to read it through.

In the end, I think his most important point is that most people are pretty ignorant of the Bible, that the most known parts of it are the "prettier" parts. As a whole, the Old Testament or the Tanakh, or whatever you want to call it, has a God who is violent, sometimes capricious. Here's a quote from his summary:

"What I've been doing, I think, is arguing with the Bible as it actually is, not as we want it to be. By reading the whole book, I have given myself a Bible that is vastly more interesting that vanilla-pudding version I was fed by Sunday School teachers and the popular culture. The Bible's gatekeepers have attempted to dupe us into adopting a Bible with a straightforward morality and delightful heroes. The real book is messier, nastier, and infinitely more complex. In other words, it's much more like life."

Thought-provoking, and kind of fun.

Publication Harper (2009), Edition: First Edition, 1st Printing, Hardcover, 336 pages
Publication date 2009
ISBN 0061374245 / 9780061374241

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