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Tuesday, February 26, 2008
The Ultimate Deriva-Lit
You might never have heard the term "derivative literature," but I promise you've been exposed to it. The movie A Thousand Acres is Shakespeare's King Lear on a farm. Clueless is Jane Austen's Emma in Beverly Hills. Tales of An Ugly Step Sister was a novel that retells the story of Cinderella from her stepsister's point of view.

I find it really entertaining to read and see these sorts of re-tellings, when an author thinks outside the box of the first version of the story and says...but what if we didn't get the whole picture? What was the other guy's side of the story?

For the ultimate in derivative literature, look to Christopher Moore's, Lamb, which seeks to fill in the gaps in the New Testament. Here's the story of Jesus Christ, a.k.a. Josh, as told by his best friend Levi, a.k.a. Biff. Did Jesus walk on water to avoid swimming after eating? Did Jesus struggle as a boy to perfect his miracle working? When did Mary Magdalene, a.k.a. Maggie, first develop her crush on the messiah? These are some of the things you can ponder and laugh over with Moore, whose cup of comic genius runneth over, as he narrates the gospel according to Biff.

Read it. I bet you'll enjoy it. I certainly did.

9 Comments

  1. Thanks to LoLo for recommending this book to me a million years ago. I should have read way earlier, but good things do come to those who wait. ;)


  2. I've read all of his, and this is by far my favorite. I just love the image of Jesus as a regular guy, with a best friend, doing guy stuff. Glad you enjoyed it! How was dinner? :-)


  3. Dinner was great; thank you for asking. My friend, David, and I went to Mission Burrito, a place we love.

    Also David's friend, John, made cranberry oatmeal cookies. I had two of them for dessert. They were delicious.

    Did you end up having the Doritos to as a sort-of simulation of Tex Mex?

    Yesterday was very fun at Nancy's. :)


  4. Your evening sounds lovely! Nancy was speculating at her place as to how it went.

    I opted for Girl Scout cookies and a frozen TV dinner, after too much huckleberry riesling, sigh. But I'm having lunch with Lorin and Brenda at a Mexican place on Thursday, and we'll be sure to toast you with a margarita or two!


  5. Yahoo. Please do. I'll be with you guys in spirit. :) Hugs all around.


  6. Consider it done, Kimber. We're meeting at noon, so will be sending vibes Houston-way!


  7. One of my favorite books, EVER!

    Glad you enjoyed it. :)


  8. Hi, Maria,

    Hope work's going great for you today. :)

    Yes, Christopher Moore is amazingly talented. I need to start reading through the other books. (The only other one I've read is Practical Demonkeeping.)

    My friend, Rick, whom I read Lamb with, likes Bloodsucking Fiends and A Dirty Job best. I'm looking forward to them.


  9. Oh it does sound like a good one! I think even my mom would like to read that too. Thanks for sharing that with us;o)


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