The Year of Living Biblically
- One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible
- Narrated by: A. J. Jacobs
- Length: 6 hrs and 15 mins
- Abridged Audiobook
- Release date: 09-27-07
- Language: English
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Regular price: $21.27
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In The Year of Living Biblically, A. J. explores the Bible chronologically, from the Old Testament (crucial, given the 10 Commandments) to the New Testament (crucial, given America's powerful evangelical movement and its literal interpretation of the Bible) and lives the Bible on every level. He obeys the 10 Commandments, he is fruitful and multiplies (A. J.'s wife had twins during his year!); he remembers the Sabbath and keeps it holy. But he also obeys the oft-neglected rules, such as avoiding clothes of mixed fibers and refraining from shaving the edges of his beard (Leviticus 19:27). So, throughout the year, A. J. is commonly mistaken for a member of ZZ Top. Or Moses.
This is a look at religion today through one man's totally arbitrary, deeply funny, journey. In A. J.'s hands, The Year of Living Biblically is also fascinating and irresistible.
"A.J. Jacobs has written a - how else to put it? - Good Book. Let me take my review from the original, Psalm 2, verse 4: 'He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh.'" (P. J. O'Rourke)
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Jonathan on 12-04-07
Excellent... But tongue in cheek
You should be warned that this book is a cross between a documentary and a comedy... he does some pretty outlandish stuff. I would compare it to the "Super Size Me" movie, where there is a very real and relevant theme, but it is taken to the extreme for entertainment value.
This story was funny, endearing and had no problem keeping my interest. I felt the author/narrator is extremely well-spoken (compared to the other audio books I have heard). The story had a good flow... although I felt the ending was slightly weak. I could relate to his and his wife's feelings and difficulties throughout.
If you are looking for a very serious look at religion in contemporary society, this may not quite hit what you are looking for. If you are looking for an entertaining story about a secular guy who tries to learn about and incorporate select parts of the old testament into his life (often to the chagrin of his wife) and relate to its teachings, you'll like it. And if you are somebody like me who grew up secular and has tried to become more religious, you will definitely be able to relate.
Some of the other reviewers complained about it not containing enough on Christianity. The book is focused only on the old testament (this is stated in the books online summary), and the author is jewish, so much more weight is definately given to the jewish view of old testament laws. He does have some christian advisors and devotes some, but not a majority, of time to christian perspectives and values... Just don't expect the whole book to be based on christianity or jesus' teachings.
If you are looking for a funny and interesting piece on relating to the old testament, this book is fantastic. Just be clear what the book up front.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful
By CHRIS on 10-26-11
Its ABRIDGED! Buy the book if want the whole story
To all the reviewers complaining about the short shrift the New Testament gets, I say read the dead tree version for the full story. Overall worth one credit, but I could do with less talk about the author's OCD routines and issues.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By The Kinsella Bunch on 07-26-15
Thoroughly Enjoyed It
As a former Fundamentalist I could relate to this on so many levels. great read.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Mr Jeremy J Osborn on 06-24-17
A good read
Often funny, informative and occasionally bittersweet this is a good insight into what it might be like to follow what you can of the bible. I like the idea of doing things that eventually leads to being. Don't swear and become less angry.