the cheeky godling

A snippet from the UK Guardian that perked my little antenna right up:

He enraged America’s religious right with his portrayal of God as a senile old man in the His Dark Materials trilogy, and now Philip Pullman is set to court more Christian controversy – this time with a novel about “the Scoundrel Christ”.

The book will provide a new account of the life of Jesus, challenging the gospels and arguing that the version in the New Testament was shaped by the apostle Paul. “By the time the gospels were being written, Paul had already begun to transform the story of Jesus into something altogether new and extraordinary, and some of his version influenced what the gospel writers put in theirs,” said Pullman, who last year pronounced himself delighted that the His Dark Materials trilogy was one of the most “challenged” series in America’s libraries, boasting the most requests for removal from the shelves because of its “religious viewpoint”.

I have been a fan of Pullman’s since 2000 when I discovered the Dark Materials books and my jaw dropped. I read them, and was a little stunned by the size of the man’s balls. They’re another example of what is supposedly children’s literature raising the bar for the whole field, and they remain among my favourites to this day, all full of Blakean imagery and some fairly lugubrious criticism of organized religion. If they’re news to you, run out and buy a copy of the first book tout suite. (I wouldn’t recommend the movie.)

This new book will be published as part of Canongate Press’s myths series—a project which I heartily adore—and will be come out in the spring of next year.

I. Can’t. Wait.


~ by A Mundi on September 29, 2009.

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