Monday, May 13, 2013
The Breath of God by Jeffrey Small
The Breath of God: A Novel of Suspense, Jeffrey Small. Atlanta: Hundreds of Heads Books, 2011. e-book. 405 pps.
I tried to get through The Da Vinci Code but failed. When I spied The Breath of God, I was initially hesitant. I wasn't sure I would like a Dan Brown clone anymore than I like Dan Brown. But the free sample and the predominantly positive reviews persuaded me.
The Breath of God is Jeffrey Small's first novel. Small is personally well-qualified in theology to write this fictional work. There have been various supposes about what Jesus was doing between the ages of twelve and thirty. I had heard the idea that Jesus had traveled throughout India and Tibet before. Small takes this idea, blends it with a bit of romance, and works the whole thing through to a satisfying conclusion.
There is a student by the name of Grant Matthews who books a kayak guide and coincidentally winds up at a monastery in Bhutan. He meets an attractive American tourista and a lot of Buddhist monks. There is some conflict, a few loonies from the states, and content which is sure to offend both traditional Christians and traditional Muslims. [I suspect that the Buddhists and possibly the Hindus would be less offended].
sapphoq reviews says: The thing is, The Breath of God is a novel. It is not a historical novel, although bits of village legends involving a Saint Issa are included within its' pages. It is a work of fiction. Fiction by definition is fictional. As such, I found Jeffrey Small's first novel to be full of intrigue. I thought the characters were well-developed. I found the uber-Christians to be quite believable. So although I personally reject the evidence that supposes that Jesus traveled about the sub-continent, I really liked this book. Folks who are fans of Dan Brown [judging from the negative reviews] may find The Breath of God to be too much of a clone of Dan Brown's style of writing. I found it to be just what was required for a long night's reading material. Highly recommended for the rest of us who have never read Dan Brown.
a few thoughts:
Jesus did not travel to India, Christians say no:
Jesus did not travel to India, a Unitarian Universalist minister says no: http://wisdomofreligion.blogspot.com/2008/03/was-jesus-buddhist.html
Jesus did travel to India, Herbert Armstrong and a bunch of others say yes.
Maybe he did and maybe he didn't, a Wikipedia summary of pro and con arguments: