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The Testament of Mary

Cover of The Testament of Mary

The Testament of Mary

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The winner of such prestigious honors as the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Costa Book Award, Colm TOibIn has been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. The Testament of Mary presents the mother of Jesus Christ in her later years. Embittered by her son's crucifixion, by the disciples she holds in contempt, and by her own failings, Mary casts a long-suffering figure—one that challenges more typical depictions of her.

The winner of such prestigious honors as the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Costa Book Award, Colm TOibIn has been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. The Testament of Mary presents the mother of Jesus Christ in her later years. Embittered by her son's crucifixion, by the disciples she holds in contempt, and by her own failings, Mary casts a long-suffering figure—one that challenges more typical depictions of her.

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  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 23, 2012
    Tóibín (Brooklyn) has chosen Jesus’ mother as the narrator of his poignant reimagining of the last days of Christ. Mary doesn’t think her son is the son of God; in fact, she’s convinced that he’s simply running with the wrong crowd, “Something about the earnestness of those young men repelled me... the sense that there was something missing in each one of them.” But when she recounts the story of Lazarus’s return from the grave, she presents no other explanation than that of his sisters, that Jesus was the one who brought him back. At the wedding at Cana, she sees Lazarus for herself and finds that “he was in possession of a knowledge that seemed to me to have unnerved him; he had tasted something or seen or heard something which had filled him with the purest pain....” This beautiful novella turns on who or what Mary should believe about her son’s life and death—and on a mother’s grief: “I saw that once again he was trying to remove the thorns that were cutting into his forehead and the back of his head and, failing to do anything to help himself, he lifted his head for a moment and his eyes caught mine.” Agent: Rogers, Coleridge & White.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from November 25, 2013
    Meryl Streep takes on one of her biggest roles to date, voicing the mother of Jesus Christ in this audio edition of Tóibín’s novel. As Mary, Streep’s voice reflects the tragedy that befell Jesus at the hands of the Romans. Her tone is one of regret and loss, but her performance also captures Mary’s loyalty, steadfastness, and dedication. Though Mary wants nothing to do with the disciples who pen Christ’s story, she cannot help but reminisce about the past. Streep is the perfect choice to bring Mary to life, and the result is an engaging listening experience. A Scribner hardcover.

  • AudioFile Magazine Between them, author Colm TùibÆn and narrator Meryl Streep have created an audio experience worthy of all the popular awards put together. Winner of the 2012 Man Booker Prize, THE TESTAMENT OF MARY delivers what the title suggests--the life and death of Jesus of Nazareth as remembered by his mother. Told in the first person, this testament is a fearsome thing, not always what his followers, faithfully writing down her words, want to hear. But tell it she does--she, Mary/Meryl. What a role. Gorgeously, fluidly, evocatively written. Scenes of celebration, miracle, terror, pain, and redemption are vividly conjured as Streep transmutes herself into the famous first-century mother whose son left long before his death. A.C.S. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award (c) AudioFile 2013, Portland, Maine
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The Testament of Mary
The Testament of Mary
Colm Toibin
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