Naomi Alderman’s fictional account of the life of Yehoshuah (Jesus) spans the latter part of his life and the time of his death. The descriptive, graphic novel incorporates the tale of Yehoshuah, as the Messiah, into the history of the Jews during the long period of Roman oppression. The story, a mix of fact and fiction, uses Jewish sources from the works of Josephus and the Talmud, and as well, stories from the New Testament.
The book opens with Pompey’s siege of Jerusalem, in 63 BCE and closes with the destruction of Jerusalem and the exile of Jews to other lands, by Hadrian, in the latter 130’s, CE. The story is narrated in four parts by Miryam, Iehuda from Qeriot, Caiaphas and Bar-Avo (Barabbas).
Alderman’s fictional and non-fictional figures characterize human qualities, both admirable and disdainful. Ms. Alderman’s unconventional approach concerning religious aspects, although troublesome for some, portrays a realistic view.
The novel, of Jewish history, is told from the Jewish perspective. The Liar’s Gospel refers to not only the stories told of Yehoshuah after his death, but also of the conflict between Yehoshuah and Iehuda (Judas).