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Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff,…
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Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal (original 2002; edition 2003)

by Christopher Moore

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7,741306435 (4.24)229
Member:andomck
Title:Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
Authors:Christopher Moore
Info:William Morrow Paperbacks (2003), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 444 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:None

Work details

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore (2002)

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» See also 229 mentions

English (299)  French (3)  German (2)  Italian (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (306)
Showing 1-5 of 299 (next | show all)
This book attempts to rectify the missing parts of the life and times of Jesus Christ. To rectify this oversight the angel Raziel has brought back Levi bar Alphaeus who is called Biff to fill in the gap. Biff first meets Joshua when they are both aged six and Josh is playing with a lizard. They become instant friends and constant companions. Fast-forward to the age of ten when both boys meet and fall in love with Mary from Magdala (call me Maggie) and at the age of 13 decide that it's time to travel so as to avoid witnessing her marriage to Jakan. Josh is uncomfortable with his responsibilities and doesn't feel ready to take up his role as Messiah and so seeks out the three wise men that attended his birth. Biff obviously accompanies him to help keep him out of trouble.

This is a very funny, irreverent fictional account that manages to avoid crossing the line of being too offensive. There is enough research done by the author to fit the times and while liberties are taken with some events and timings it is all done well enough not to seem out of place. Some of the exchanges between Biff and Josh are hilarious and you can't help but laugh out loud at times. There are inklings for what would be used in later parables and sermons such as the origin for turning the other cheek and suchlike. I'm sure I missed a few of these as I'm not exactly familiar with the source material and those who are more conversant with the Bible would probably spot a few more. Not recommended for younger readers due to graphical content and naughty words but should be fine for everyone else. ( )
  AHS-Wolfy | Apr 1, 2015 |
This is a fantastic novel! The story moves quickly, and the devices he uses to tell the story are great -- Biff, the narrator, is brought back to life by an angel to tell his story of the Messiah. The story of his life and times are interspersed with his experience with the modern world and interactions with the angel forcing him to write his story. The innocence and humanitarian nature of Jesus are maintained throughout, and Moore never brings his divinity into question. A fun read, with lots of "Oh that could have totally happened" moments and tie-ins to the well known stories. ( )
  KillerRoo | Mar 31, 2015 |
I fucking hate this book. It bored me to tears. It had an interesting premise, which is why I started reading it in the first place. But Christopher Moore just took that premise and skull-fucked it. He shit the bed with this fucking book, and I have no fucking clue why so many people love it so much.

It's the story of Biff, Jesus's childhood friend. But of course, Biff calls him 'Josh', as you do. The book details the years that were left out of the Bible, the actual childhood of 'Josh' and Biff. How they learned kung-fu together. Discovered coffee. Invented sarcasm.

Okay, see even my description makes it sound like an interesting book, but IT'S NOT, GODDAMNIT. It's boring as fuck. It's just page after page of them wandering around, doing mostly nothing. Very rarely did they do anything worth noting. It's just bullshit.

I was hoping that this book was going to poke fun at the Bible. That always amuses me. Tearing Christians to shreds is one of my favorite pastimes. But if anything, this book reinforced the ideas of the Bible. You know, helping people and all that shit. I hate it so much.

Fuck people. People are assholes. Most of them deserve to die a horrible death. Especially, back in those days. People were not nice. They were only out for themselves. You know, like most people are today. Fucking assholes.

I did not pick up this book to get preached at, which is what it ended up doing. Don't fucking preach to me, Moore. I know I'm an asshole. I'm fine with it. If there really is a hell, I would enjoy going there, because at least then, I wouldn't be stuck in bullshit heaven, having to deal with my fucked-up relatives. I'd rather burn in hell, thank you very much. ( )
  gecizzle | Mar 5, 2015 |
I started this book with trepidation because I was concerned that it might be disrespectful, if not downright blasphemous. I found it, instead, to be a well-researched, thoughtful, intelligent, and downright hilarious book that takes place during the "missing years" between the miraculous birth of the man we know as Jesus and when he took up his well-documented ministry at age 30. This is a story, not fact-based, but it is respectful of the source and clearly written by someone with a passing familiarity with both the history of the 1st century world and the tenets of several major religions. The parts of the story that blend with the pieces we are familiar with may not square with the traditional exegesis of the scriptures but are certainly not demonstrably wrong. But more to the point, it is an entertaining read from beginning to end, shedding a new light on some very familiar people-- one in particular. ( )
  sharoncville3579 | Jan 24, 2015 |
People have been telling me to read this for years and I've avoided it because I don't usually care for "funny" novels. Most of them reek of "trying too hard." This one doesn't. It is funny, just the right amount of funny, but it rarely feels forced. And I have to admit that it is entertaining to imagine what Jesus was doing between birth and age 30. ( )
  CherieDooryard | Jan 20, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 299 (next | show all)
"Lamb" is an incredibly compelling work even for readers who don't agree with Moore's conclusions. The book is also laugh out loud funny at times, which really helps during some of more irreverent parts of the story.
 
Interesting, original, not for every taste.
added by mysterymax | editKirkus Review (May 20, 2010)
 

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Christopher Mooreprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Moore, Christophermain authorall editionsconfirmed
Moore, Christophermain authorall editionsconfirmed
Stevens, FisherNarratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
God is a comedian playing to an audience that is afraid to laugh. - Voltaire
Author's blessing

If you have come to these pages for laughter, may you find it.
If you are here to be offended, may your ire rise and your blood boil.
If you seek adventure, may this story sing you away to blissful escape.
If you need to test or confirm your beliefs, may you reach comfortable conclusions.
All books revel perfection, by what they are or what they are not.
May you find that which you seek, in these pages or outside them.
May you find perfection, and know it by name.
Dedication
First words
The angel was cleaning out his closets when the call came.
Quotations
You think you know how this story is going to end, but you don't.
I learned how to boil down goat urine to make explosives today.
Hi, I'm the Messiah, God wanted you to have this bacon.
I know that even now, having watched enough television, you probably won't even refer to them as lepers so as to spare their feelings. You probably call them 'parts-dropping-off challenged' or something.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
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Original language
Book description
In this work the author seeks to fill in the "lost" years of Jesus through the point of view of Jesus' childhood pal, "Levi bar Alphaeus who is called Biff". Biff has been resurrected in the present day, to complete missing parts of the Bible. Supposedly under the watchful eye of the angel Raziel, who turns out to be more interested in the soap operas on the television in their hotel, Biff is made to write down his account of the decades missing from Jesus' life. During these years he and Joshua (which, as Biff points out, "Jesus" is the Greek version of, and thus in Galilee Jesus was called Joshua Bar Joseph) travel to the East to seek the Three Wise Men who attended Joshua's birth, so that he may learn how to become the Messiah.
Haiku summary
Biff is quite a guy/His friend is the Messiah/Find out what that's like (jeshakespeare)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0380813815, Paperback)

While the Bible may be the word of God, transcribed by divinely inspired men, it does not provide a full (or even partial) account of the life of Jesus Christ. Lucky for us that Christopher Moore presents a funny, lighthearted satire of the life of Christ--from his childhood days up to his crucifixion--in Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal. This clever novel is surely blasphemy to some, but to others it's a coming-of-age story of the highest order.

Joshua (a.k.a. Jesus) knows he is unique and quite alone in his calling, but what exactly does his Father want of him? Taking liberties with ancient history, Moore works up an adventure tale as Biff and Joshua seek out the three wise men so that Joshua can better understand what he is supposed to do as Messiah. Biff, a capable sinner, tags along and gives Joshua ample opportunities to know the failings and weaknesses of being truly human. With a wit similar to Douglas Adams, Moore pulls no punches: a young Biff has the hots for Joshua's mom, Mary, which doesn't amuse Josh much: "Don't let anyone ever tell you that the Prince of Peace never struck anyone." And the origin of the Easter Bunny is explained as a drunken Jesus gushes his affection for bunnies, declaring, "Henceforth and from now on, I decree that whenever something bad happens to me, there shall be bunnies around."

One small problem with the narrative is that Biff and Joshua often do not have distinct voices. A larger difficulty is that as the tone becomes more somber with Joshua's life drawing to its inevitable close, the one-liners, though not as numerous, seem forced. True to form, Lamb keeps the story of Joshua light, even after its darkest moments. --Michael Ferch

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:23:43 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

The birth of Jesus has been well chronicled, as have his glorious teachings, acts, and divine sacrifice after his thirtieth birthday. But no one knows about the early life of the Son of God, the missing years-except Biff, the Messiah's best bud, who has been resurrected to tell the story in the divinely hilarious yet heartfelt work "reminiscent of Vonnegut and Douglas Adams" (Philadelphia Inquirer). Verily, the story Biff has to tell is a miraculous one, filled with remarkable journeys, magic, healings, kung fu, corpse reanimations, demons, and hot babes. Even the considerable wiles and devotion of the Savior's pal may not be enough to divert Joshua from his tragic destiny. But there's no one who loves Josh more-except maybe "Maggie," Mary of Magdala-and Biff isn't about to let his extraordinary pal suffer and ascend without a fight.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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