- Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana © 2008
- Toronto: Alfred A. Knopf
- 242 pages
I bought the first book in this series, Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt for its novelty. The Vampire chronicler herself was tackling the life of Christ, and it seemed like an honest endeavour. I bought the sequel as soon as it came out on the strength of the first novel. I wasn’t let down. The Road to Cana even surpasses Out of Egypt.
Here’s why this novel shines:
- Historical Accuracy: Rice has done her homework. She studied N. T. Wright and many others to ensure she understood the era before embarking.
- Theological Acumen: Rice has not only done her historical homework—she’s worked through the theology as well. Having just preached a message on the Wedding at Cana, I was happily surprised to discover the theological nuances she revealed in her prose, while never sounding like a text book.
- Vocational Wrestling: Have you ever wondered when Jesus knew that he was the Messiah, God’s Son, or even God himself? Without giving the novel away, the scenes where Jesus wrestles with his vocation are among the strongest in the book.
- Contemplative Prayer: A path to contemplative prayer involves reading scripture slowly and placing yourself into the text. What would it be like to stand on the bank of the Jordan River when John the Baptist looked up and caught a glimpse of the one whom he had foretold? How would the crowd react? In a very real sense, this book is a prayer. I found myself compelled to follow Jesus’ life and example all over again as I saw him through Rice’s imagination.
Read this series. For the theologian, Rice places diverse theological ideas into a beautifully concise narrative—which theology’s home in the first place. For the believer, these books will make you love Jesus and think about his life all over again. For those who don’t know much about Christ the Lord, these books are a great introduction to the most enigmatic person in history.