"I think I look kinda fat here lol" -God Due to the presence of these tangents, a lot of readers won't stick around for the meat of the story, and that would certainly be a shame because once it gets going, it really is one of the most exciting reads around (just to give you an idea of how good it is, the book has apparently gathered such an intense fanbase that some people give it away for free on the streets!). The first half of the book, called the Old Testament, is really more about getting a feel for the setting than it is advancing the story. During this time we get a glimpse of God's troubled past and are witness to a few key events that really allow the depth of the character to shine through (he's kind of a dark anti-hero; quick tempered and sometimes spiteful--but much like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, he actually has a heart of gold deep down). The author takes this set-up time to explore the world thoroughly. But while even supporting characters are given their moment to shine, sometimes that gets distracting. For example, during Moses' adventures, we come to relate to him as a troubled sort of everyman. Sure, he was adopted by royalty, but he never really became complacent. He saw the mistreatment and suffering of the people around him, and he was moved into taking action. All good so far, right? It's kind of like Footloose or a Bruce Springsteen song: It's all about the plight of the working man. (And honestly, who exemplifies the working man more than slaves? All they do is work!)
Pictured: Moses (essentially.) It's a simple little story of class conflict and redemption, and then, almost without warning, everything suddenly gets magical: Oceans are parted, flaming shrubbery starts yelling at dudes and, in what is one of many disturbingly phallic metaphors littered throughout the book, Moses and the Pharaoh's magicians start slinging about their "snakes" and "staffs" to see whose is bigger. It's all quite exciting and imaginative, but it feels kind of like a bait and switch: We came into Moses' story reading The Grapes of Wrath, then wham! Moses finds out he's a Jew and shit goes totally Harry Potter.