I’m not sure what to best compare this book to. It’s the first of it’s kinda that I’ve had the opportunity to read up to this point. Maggie’s Story by Dandi Daley Mackall (published by Tyndale House Publishers) is, simply, the retelling of the story of Mary Magdelene. It is a work of fiction, imagining what Mary’s life would be like in this modern times (post 9-11).
Mackall introduces the book by mentioning what we know of Mary Magdalene in the scriptures and then she uses her imagination to portray what type of past history Magdalene would have had in today’s society and what she would most struggle with.
Of course, all the key players (Mary herself, followed by Jesus and his disciples) are renamed. (Mary = Maggie; Jesus = Josh; Peter = Pete; Judas = Jude, etc.) Mary’s past includes an abortion and she spends some time writing to her journal which she has named “Chance” after the baby she aborted.
Jesus Josh is suspected of being a terrorist and instead of being labeled “King of the Jews”, people cheer for him to be President of the United States. To say this book is a bit unusual is an understatement.
It is a unique approach to retelling the gospel stories in a way that would make them more identifiable in this modern age. Themes in this book include: drugs and sex. They play a heavy role in the book. In short, it is a dramatization with modern references that today’s audience could identify with and think about. It is certainly a book that makes you think!
I know people have varying opinions of re-writes and modernization of scripture. Some of you might love this book while others would hate it. It walks a fine line and it sure to receive a good deal of censure as well as praise. If you don’t mind this type of story-telling, then you’ll want to give this book a shot. If you do – don’t pick it up.
Carrie comes by her book obsession honestly, having descended from a long line of bibliophiles. She blogs about books regularly at Reading to Know.