There is nothing better than discovering a book that makes you want to keep reading until you casually look over at the clock and it reads 3:00am and you know you have to get up and go to work in the morning – but after one more chapter. LAMB, THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO BIFF, CHRIST’S CHILDHOOD PAL by Christopher Moore is that kind of book to me.
I’ve never heard of Christopher Moore (I know…sometimes I am so late to the party, it’s unbelievable. It’s amazing I even have a DVD player) before reading this novel, but I am now a diehard fan. The novel is a truly well-told story of the years of Jesus’ life that have been mysteriously left out of The New Testament of the Bible. Christopher (yes, he is a friend in my head so I can call him by his first name…maybe even Chris) tells the story from the point of view of the son of God’s best friend Levi, known as Biff.
The storytelling is inventive, original, and funny. Although told mostly in first person, the four people (including my mother) that read this blog know it is not my favorite point of view. But it works with the author’s unique sense of humor and the established rapport between Biff and Jesus, known as Joshua throughout the book. As in any story, there are licenses taken for dramatic effect, including Biff’s insistence that he created sarcasm. Hilarious!
Biff is a smartass. A warrior. A lover of women and sex. And a good friend. Christopher imbues him with a fierce loyalty and a profound sadness over his friend’s decisions. It is a lampoon, but is never mean-spirited. And none of the silliness detracts it from making the novel one of the most entertaining I have ever read, and I can’t wait to read more.