Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Unholy Night by Seth Grahame-Smith

Unholy Night is one of those books I picked up with a mixture of anticipation and trepidation. On the one hand, I'd read many of Grahame-Smith's horror infused retellings of literature and history, and enjoyed them. But, the Nativity story! Isn't that just bound to be...irreverent?

It could have been, but it wasn't.

Unholy Night casts the Wise Men as three escaped criminals who find themselves thrown into a violent journey with a young Jewish couple and their enigmatic baby. This brings me to the major gripe of the book: the Wise Men meeting up with the infant Jesus . (This bothers me about most Nativity scenes and children's Christmas storybooks). This book is not for the fainthearted...even if you normally don't mind violence,  the slaughter of the innocence and a torture scene just might  push past your limits. But if you have a strong stomach, Unholy Night is a highly enjoyable read that treats Jesus's birth with respect and asks a deeply important question...what if Christ had come into the world just as He left...surrounded by thieves and women of ill repute?


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