February 6, 2009

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal; A Novel by Christopher Moore

This is my first review for The Book Nook, and as it's my first review I am happy to be reviewing what just may be my favourite book of all time. It also happens to be the book I was reading when I decided to be a contributor to this great site.

This book is an irreverently witty and comical look at the lost years of Jesus Christ, what may have happened between the ages of twelve and thirty.

At the dawn of the new millennium, Christ's childhood friend Levi bar Alphaeus who is called Biff finds himself resurrected so that he may write his Gospel having the unique honour of being at side of the Messiah through the formative years.

This laugh-out-loud novel follows Biff and Joshua (as Biff points out in the novel, Jesus is a Greek translation of the name Yeshua, Joshua, and Christ is the Greek translation for the Hebrew word Messiah) as they grow from boys to men and travel East in search of the Three Wise Men so that Josh may learn how to become the Messiah to his people.

Moore is, happily, able to bring an endearing human quality to the man who was born of God, and juxtaposes him with his brash, cocky, and often lewd and vulgar best friend Biff. Together they study for years under the tutelage of the different Magi and learn from them in their own ways.

I have read this book six times, finishing the sixth time just this morning, and even though I know how the book will end (anyone knowing the plot of The Passion does) I still find myself on the edge of my proverbial seat as Moore takes us through the torture and trial of Christ through the eyes of his friends and apostles. As sarcastic and filled with tongue-in-cheek and clever irony as this book is, the spiritual and ethereal divinity is not lost. In fact, I find myself able to better empathize with the Biblical story, and coming from someone who is in no way religious, the basic teachings of being kind and loving thy neighbour as thyself are still easily identifiable.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone, regardless of their faith or creed, as there is a little bit in there for everyone. Please remember, though, that it is a work of fiction and beyond that, a comedy. It is not intended to change any one's beliefs or to challenge them in any way. And also, be forewarned that there is a great deal of language and sexual content within the covers of this book, sometimes tasteful, sometimes not (Oh Biff and his debauchery, not to worry Christ is ever Christlike).

This book is a Five Star book if I've ever read one. I hope you like it too.


  1. I really enjoyed this book too. I get excited every time I see a book by Moore.

  2. We have lent this book out and it's disappeared. It is on the "Must Replace" list! Moore is a genius.

  3. the bible-esque gift version shown on my post was my christmas gift this year, and my 3rd copy of the book. my first copy was passed around so much, made it's way to mexico and the beach, and practically disintegrated when it found it's way back to me. friends were lending it to their friends, etc. I bought a second copy and that has made the rounds too. Now that i have the fancy version, that will be my At-Home copy and the second paperback will be the pass around copy.

  4. read this book last year and it was delightful to read. Thanks for the reminder as I always meant to seek out other books by Moore

  5. Christopher Moore is one of the funniest writers out there! I have read a number of his books but strangely enough have yet to read this one - which is probably one of his most popular ones. I'm glad to see that it that's its as hilarious as his others. His newest one "Fool" is absolutely amazing as well!


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