I was in Amsterdam last week to attend my sister’s graduation and of course, had to step inside the American Book Center for a moment. I have rhapsodized about the wonder that is the ABC before, and I will do so many times in the future. I love the fact that they have a large selection of half-price books, as that means I can get two for the price of one..which is what I did. I can’t write about the second book I bought, as it’s a present for my sister, but I can write about the first one.
I know Jonathan Goldstein from This American Life (what did I ever do before I listened to that show?!) and knew of this book, but I didn’t know it was out yet. And I most definitely did not expect to find it for half price! But I did, and I bought it.
Goldstein retells some of the famous story from the Bible (Jonah in the whale, Adam and Eve, Jacob and Esau, Samson, David, even Joseph and Mary) from a new perspective. Some of it is funny, some of it is tragic, and some is in between. I liked it, but not excessively so. If I had to rate it, I’d give it 7 out of 10. I think it’s especially good if you’ve grown up hearing these stories because you then appreciate the contrast a bit more, not to mention that you actually know how Goldstein is inverting the story as it is traditionally told.
The cover reminds me of an art book I also saw at the ABC, which I loved and almost bought. It’s called Little People in the City, and if you go check out this blog you’ll see why. I highly recommend it!