An inspiring story of a strong woman living in a society bent on her silence
Superlative . . . from a writer at the top of her game . . . A practically perfect historical novel
Praise for Sue Monk Kidd's earlier novels
'Exhilarating. . . powerful'
'Moving, original, and accomplished . . . It is wonderfully written, powerful, poignant, and humorous'
'The tale of one motherless daughter's discovery of what family really means - and of the strange and wondrous places we love'
'Wonderful - well-written, moving and engaging by turns, and always compelling'
'A resonant, illuminating novel'
This year's The Help - but even better
'A remarkable novel that heightened my sense of what it meant to be a woman - slave or free . . . a conversation changer' - Oprah Winfrey, O, The Oprah Magazine
'The stunning metaphors and realistic characters are so poignant they will bring tears to your eyes'
'A testament to the author's talent for creating both compelling characters and intriguing story lines ... The intensity, bravery, and strength of character of Ana ... will inspire readers ... to live authentically and remain true to oneself'
Kidd describes a first-century world full of political and religious tensions, which feels simultaneously ancient and freshly awake with spiritual possibility. [...]The message about the importance of kindness and the power of women's voices should resonate strongly with today's readers'
Ana's ambition and strong sense of justice make her a sympathetic character for modern readers ... A vibrant portrait of a woman striving to preserve and celebrate women's stories - her own and countless others
Unleashes the reader's imagination with glorious evocations of extraordinary times and places, allowing our minds to roam... Original, challenging, beautiful
Compelling ... Ana is a truly wonderful character, strong and inspiring, and her life story so captivating that it swept me along
'A wonderfully researched novel ... reimagining the past through the eyes of a creative, curious and defiant woman'
A bold, imaginative reworking of the Christian tale from a female perspective
Brilliant ... the familiar characters brought to vivid life
"This novel has an intriguing premise . . . The novel's evocation of life in Galilee is fascinating, and clever, rebellious Ana is a memorable character."
This is not Jesus' story, but Ana's. [...] The Book of Longings is the testament of a bold woman, and the story of many stolen female voices.
· A master of literary women's fiction, Kidd always strikes a chord with her strong, feisty female protagonists . . . [The Book of Longings] is an engaging story about a young woman defying the odds to make her voice heard, a story that remains relevant today . . . [and] underscore[s] what's lost when one group - be it one gender, race or religion - gets to write the history for all.
I kept having to close this novel and breathe deeply, again and again. A radical re-imagining of the New Testament that reflects on women's longing and silencing and awakening, it is a true masterpiece.
Kidd's bold narrative revisionism allows her protagonist to be in every respect the equal of her husband while posing this question: How would Western culture be different if men and women had grown in appreciation of each other's spirit?
No other writer has fleshed out a partner who can stand on her own, who is intellectually and spiritually well matched with Jesus . . . Kidd's research into first-century Jewish life, along with her vivid descriptions of the villages and terrain, make Ana's story come alive
Kidd uses her unexpected narrator to reveal new perspectives on an endlessly parsed era.
Imaginative . . . Charts a young woman's struggle to confront the ways in which society dictates what she can and cannot do.
Riveting . . . Telling the story of an extraordinary life in one of the most startling pieces of historical fiction you're likely to set eyes on this year