The Book of Longings

The Book of Longings

Book - 2020
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"Raised in a wealthy family in Sepphoris with ties to the ruler of Galilee, Ana is rebellious and ambitious, a relentless seeker with a brilliant, curious mind and a daring spirit. She yearns for a pursuit worthy of her life, but finds no outlet for her considerable talents. Defying the expectations placed on women, she engages in furtive scholarly pursuits and writes secret narratives about neglected and silenced women. When she meets the eighteen-year-old Jesus, each is drawn to and enriched by the other's spiritual and philosophical ideas. He becomes a floodgate for her intellect, but also the awakener of her heart. Their marriage unfolds with love and conflict, humor and pathos in Nazareth, where Ana makes a home with Jesus, his brothers, James and Simon, and their mother, Mary. Here, Ana's pent-up longings intensify amid the turbulent resistance to the Roman occupation of Israel, partially led by her charismatic adopted brother, Judas. She is sustained by her indomitable aunt Yaltha, who is searching for her long-lost daughter, as well as by other women, including her friend Tabitha, who is sold into slavery after she was raped, and Phasaelis, the shrewd wife of Herod Antipas. Ana's impetuous streak occasionally invites danger. When one such foray forces her to flee Nazareth for her safety shortly before Jesus's public ministry begins, she makes her way with Yaltha to Alexandria, where she eventually finds refuge and purpose in unexpected surroundings."--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: [New York, New York] : Viking, [2020]
Copyright Date: ©2020
ISBN: 9780525429760
Branch Call Number: FICTION KIDD
Characteristics: 418 pages : maps ; 25 cm


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ontherideau Jul 05, 2020

Sue Monk Kidd gives voice to a fictional wife of Jesus and a voice to feminism long ago.

Jul 04, 2020

Kidd is an able writer, but she fails to develope any of the book's characters into more than two dimensions with the exception of the young girl, the narrator. I truly enjoy historical fiction that broadens the reader's knowledge and appreciation of past eras and foreign geography; I also enjoy knowing more facts about historic people. But I fail to enjoy fabricated stories that ignore factual events and details recorded by eyewitnesses. This is a poor grasping for popularity by a writer-adrift.

Gina_Vee Jun 27, 2020

This book is so good. Not only can you picture being Ana; you can picture "Ana" actually existing.

If you loved The Red Tent and The Dovekeepers like I did, you'll love The Book of Longings!

Karen_Weber Jun 03, 2020

Whether you are a student of the Bible or have never heard the story of Jesus, this story will draw you and and hold you to it's finish. Imagine a world in which Jesus had a wife. What was her life like? What was it like to be a woman in Galilee in the iron age? Sue Monk Kidd's research into both the history and the topic is exhaustive. And if she really existed...was she the most silenced female voice in history?!

May 29, 2020

On reading the synopsis and learning that this is a fictional account of a wife of Jesus, one assumes that it is rather audacious. However, the book is a very sensitive treatment of Jesus and deals with a woman's voice from the first century. Ana, the fictitious wife of Jesus has longings like any woman but she finds a way to voice these longings - through her writings. Like any woman of her century she is snubbed and silenced but she fleas Nazareth and finds a home in Alexandria where she is able to write independently. It is amazing what she achieved in her day and age and some of this is relevant today too and Sue Monk Kidd has done women a great service by voicing these longings. This book needs to be widely read.

May 17, 2020

Just like Diamant’s The Red Tent, this book helped me see women of the Old Testament as real people not backdrops. What makes this even more interesting is Judas Iscariot is her brother. Yes, I imagine there will be a hubbub about giving Jesus a wife, but it does not denigrate anything about Christ. It gives a voice to women at a time when they had no rights. Yes, it might be called revisionist history, but it is historical fiction and after all Jesus was known to champion women. I would love to see this as a discussion starter in an adult church school class. How would western culture be different if both men and women appreciated the others spirit and intellect?

jabberbooky Apr 13, 2020

Excellent historic fiction (emphasis on fiction). Thoroughly researched and moving. Ana is a smart and strong character and her story is compelling. One of Sue Monk Kidd's best! Just read it.

JCLHeatherC Feb 25, 2020

What if your life and your work were erased from history simply because you were a woman? This book explores the life of Ana who feels a longing to learn and to write and to leave a mark on this world. She finds a kindred spirit in a man named Jesus. Beautiful in its scope and imagery, this is for anyone with longings of their own.


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