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The Book of Longings

Reading this incredible story from a male perspective was far more than interesting, it was amazing, and informative reflecting on a small segment of history not already contemplated.  Although I have no fixed ideas of Christianity, and therefore read it as a work set in the times of an ever more powerful Rome, The Book of Longings, which while it took some time to read, was evocative and informative, looking at the life of women in a time when to sell them off was considered the right of the father, regardless of their standing in society.

It is considered there was a time when Jesus was just an ordinary person going about his craft as a carpenter and stone mason; one of a number of children in the family of Joseph of Arimathea and his wife Mary.

The Book of Longings is a love story based on the premises, which some scholars consider was Jesus’ life before he became a powerful, charismatic leader of the people. Some consider Jesus did indeed marry and may have had children, therefore this story told by Ana, the wife of Jesus, could have some serious historical merits, but otherwise is simply a formidable, fictitious, historic love affair.

Ana, born into a wealthy family was soon to discover that her sheltered life was little different to many other daughters, in that she was to be married to a man much her senior for her father’s ambition. A chance meeting with a young carpenter called Jesus and his passionate ideas are intoxicating to the protected young girl.

A simple love story, or maybe the lament of a young woman much in love with a man who was on a powerful course with destiny, a man who was to change the beliefs of so many with his ideas, Ana comes across as a power in her own right, and although it may seem that her character could be  little to modern for the times, who is say this may be incorrect, as those long gone days are not well recorded through history from a  female perspective, as women were considered more as chattles, rather than people in their own right; there, but not there.

Perhaps, to thoroughly enjoy this book it is best to park pre-conceived ideas firmly to one side, before beginning a journey that just may have been as incredible as Sue Monk Kidd has portrayed

Author Sue Monk Kidd
Publisher Hachette Australia
ISBN 9781472232502
Distributor Hachette Australia
Released 2020