Wednesday, 28 December 2016

The Testament of Mary - Colm Toibin

This author cannot put a foot wrong word wise for me.  Subject matter?  not always want you might like, but the words, the words......

This unchaptered novella, just broken up from time to time with an asterisk to denote a break was a strange, odd, cruel telling of Mary's view of her son; his miracles, his death and after.  For her he was just her lovely son.  That is until he left home and fell in with a crowd of men who wanted more.  He became someone else.  Stories drifted back to her about the lame walking and the dead rising, and at the wedding in Cana, the water into wine miracle is seen as something else altogether by her.

By the time the book was ended, I admired Mary greatly, disliked the disciples intensely, understood the point of view of Pontius Pilot, and thought about other teachers/leaders who got people to hang on their every word.  Chilling, brilliant.

Some readers have loved this book, others hated it because it was not as The Bible described..... but then the gospels were written some years after the death of the big man, and were very possibly embellished to instill wonder into those words.  If you think that blasphemy is a great sin, this may not be the read for you.  But as a different point of view it should be read.  And again, it's the words, the words.....