THE LIFE OF JESUS by Toby Olson

THE LIFE OF JESUS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

I think there is one thing we hold in common," the narrator of this surrealist myth begins, "in our secret hearts, we each believe we were born of a virgin. . . . Perhaps it is different for women." So "the boy" passes into childhood, still considering himself to be miraculous like Jesus, whose life is imprinted on his psyche. It is not until after his twelfth year that the boy becomes human; he realizes that he is the child of the "ludicrous" cripple who is his mother's husband. Past this revelation, the passion and crucifixion unreel. In the book's final stages, the boy, now God-as-man, reenters the state of grace called Heaven. This time, however, it is the crippled father who, in his wheelchair, welcomes his son. But it is not so much plot, even in the psychological sense, as aesthetic action--form and language--which propels the book. It reads like poetry, but isn't a poem; uses narrative and autobiographical techniques, but is neither a novel nor autobiography. A myth of initiation, then--intimate, truly touching, original.
Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1976
ISBN: 0811206130
Page count: 152pp
Publisher: New Directions
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 1976




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