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Monday, August 26, 2013

Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth

It's Birthday Book Week on the Sassy Peach! That's right, the anniversary of my 30th birthday is this Thursday. In honor of it, I am posting reviews every day this week. Yay for books!!!

Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth by Reza Aslan was a hot topic over the past few weeks.  You might remember this interview.

It's been called the greatest story ever told. A baby, born in a manger, grows up to lead a movement that would, centuries later, become one of the largest religions in the world. But who was the man named Jesus of Nazareth? Aslan, a religious scholar, dives deep into the history of ancient Palestine to examine who this man truly was, how his image and story were shaped in the decades the following his death, and how his zealotry shaped his own life and was shaped by the times he was in.

You guys, this book was awesome. It was so insightful and so colorful. It is deeply rooted in historical context which I love so hard. It is well-researched, incredibly in-depth, and exactly what I am looking for in my non-fiction reading enjoyment. I found myself highlighting a sentence or a passage every few pages. There is so much information and explication in this book that you will have to read short sections at a time in order to take it all in and process the information in front of your eyes.

Aslan is clearly an outstanding scholar and researcher, and his work speaks for itself. I didn't feel that there was any agenda in this book; it was as rooted in history as it could possibly be. In fact, the whole last quarter of the book is notes and sources. This makes me so ridiculously excited that I actually found myself jumping for joy. If you love history, if you love religious research, or if you just love a good story that is meaty and authentic, this is your book.

Kindle version on left, hard copy on right.

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