Summary and book reviews of Christ The Lord Out of Egypt by Anne Rice

Christ The Lord Out of Egypt

By Anne Rice

Christ The Lord Out of Egypt
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  • Hardcover: Nov 2005,
    336 pages.
    Paperback: Feb 2008,
    336 pages.

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Book Summary

Having completed the two cycles of legend to which she has devoted her career so far, Anne Rice gives us now her most ambitious and courageous book, a novel about the early years of Christ The Lord, based on the Gospels and on the most respected New Testament scholarship.

The book's power derives from the passion its author brings to the writing and the way in which she summons up the voice, the presence, the words of Jesus who tells the story.

I was seven years old. What do you know when you're seven years old? All my life, or so I thought, we'd been in the city of Alexandria, in the Street of the Carpenters, with the other Galileans, and sooner or later we were going home.

Late afternoon. We were playing, my gang against his, and when he ran at me again, bully that he was, bigger than me, and catching me off balance, I felt the power go out of me as I shouted: "You'll never get where you're going."

He fell down white in the sandy earth, and they all crowded around him. The sun was hot and my chest was heaving as I looked at him. He was so limp.

In the snap of two fingers everyone drew back. It seemed the whole street went quiet except for the carpenters' hammers. I'd never heard such a quiet.

"He's ...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
The questions, discussion topics, and suggestions for further reading that follow are designed to enhance your group's discussion of Anne Rice's extraordinary novel about the early years of Jesus. Rice, well known for her ability to weave compelling plots and characters against a richly detailed and meticulously researched historical background, journeys to the first century and brings to life the religious beliefs and traditions, the political turmoil, and the family secrets that marked the beginning of Jesus' mission on earth.

Told in the voice of the seven-year-old Jesus, Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt is the story of ...
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Reviews

Media Reviews
Publishers Weekly

As fiction, though, the book's first half is slow going. Since it is told from Jesus' perspective, the childlike language can be simplistic, though as readers persevere they will discover the riches of the sparse prose Rice adopts.

Booklist - Kristine Huntley

By no means presenting a radical version of Jesus, Rice does an admirable job of rendering Jesus' compassion, his curiosity about the world and other people, and his youthful feelings.

Library Journal - Tamara Butler

Rice's superb storytelling skills enable her to succeed where many other writers have failed.

Kirkus Reviews

With this novel, she has indeed found a convincing version of him; this is fiction that transcends story and instead qualifies as an act of faith. Joins Nikos Kazantzakis's The Last Temptation of Christ and Shusaku Endo's A Life of Jesus as one of the bolder re-tellings.

School Library Journal - Matthew Moffet

This new direction for Rice is both bold and reverent, and is bound to please fans and newcomers alike.

Washington Post - Melvin Jules Bukiet

Whether Jesus was the soul of mercy or, as some historians have claimed, a political rabble-rouser, the one quality he must have had in order to live through the millennia was spirit. It's the one great quality the Bible has in abundance, as revealed by either the chiseled spareness of Everett Fox's translation of Genesis or the luscious oratory of King James. Rice has sucked the life out of the greatest story ever told.

The New York Times - Janet Maslin

Christ the Lord shares predilections with her other books. Even in biblical times and in the Holy Land, Ms. Rice retains her obsessions with ritual and purification, with lavish detail and gaudy decor. But she writes this book in a simpler, leaner style, giving it the slow but inexorable rhythm of an incantation. The restraint and prayerful beauty of Christ the Lord is apt to surprise her usual readers and attract new ones.

Reader Reviews
Joanna Lamb

Choice.
I enjoyed this book very much. I am a liberal Christian, and some parts of the book gave me goosebumps. Kudos to you, Rice!

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