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Towing Jehovah Hardcover – May 1 1994


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 371 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt; 1st Edition edition (May 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0151909199
  • ISBN-13: 978-0151909193
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 16 x 3.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 680 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,074,682 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Format: Paperback
When I first started reading Towing Jehovah, I'm not sure what I expected. What I got was a very funny (laugh-out-loud funny) satirical novel that is about towing the 2 mile long body of God to Antartica for preservation.
I didn't expect it but the book was terrific. I've ordered the two sequels and looking forward to devouring them!
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By Scott E. Conrad on Dec 16 2003
Format: Paperback
It has been a while since i have read this, but I remember it being an interesting read. I think it ended up fizzling out a little at the end, but it left a good enough impression on me that I am using it to direct me to other books like it.
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Format: Paperback
God, a 2 mile giant, croaks and floats in the ocean. What now?
I laughed and thought a lot. You won't forget this one! James Morrow is a gem. A World Fantasy Award Winner. (You never know where these books will take you.)
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By Stone Junction on March 5 2003
Format: Paperback
P>TOWING JEHOVAH starts with an intriguing premise; if God were dead, what would happen to the body? In this case, it lies in the Atlantic Ocean, a two mile-long corpse of staggering dimensions. Faced with this dilemma, leaderless angels take it upon themselves to contact the Vatican, hire a ship commanded by the disgraced captain of a horrific oil spill (think EXXON), and tow the body to the Arctic, where an icy tomb awaits.
Along the way, a variety of people and events serve to point out the many, MANY foibles of mankind. Suddenly faced with the prospect of life without constant watch from above, the boat's crew begins to experiment with life in Anno Postdomini One. Sin becomes pointless, and anarchy begins to take hold. Murder occurs, sex explodes, and gluttony becomes the order of the day, despite the ship's Vatican representative insisting that despite the lack of a supreme being, it does not negate the Kantian moral law that exists within.
The Vatican (or, the Big See) faces extinction, and attempt to hide God's death from the public. Devoted atheists, also facing extinction, seek to destroy the corpse, thus hiding proof of God's existence. I recall a particular sketch from Canadian comedy troupe THE KIDS IN THE HALL; a priest, faced with proof that God both existed and is dead, solemnly intones, "I've got some good news . . . and some bad news."
Critics have compared Morrow's tale to the works of Jonathan Swift, but the comparison is not accurate. Morrow's methods are a much more direct version of satire than Swift, who preferred metaphor to direct comparison. This is not to slight Morrow's accomplishments at all, only to point out that Morrow's targets are never in doubt. Vonnegut is a far more incisive comparison in both Morrow's scope and humour.
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Format: Paperback
James Morrow has made eschatological science fiction and fantasy his domain over the past ten years. He started with the short stories "Bible Stories for Adults", which garnered him a Nebula award, then quickly followed up with a novel in the same vein, 1990's Only Begotten Daughter, in which the second coming of God comes in the female form. His latest novel, Towing Jehovah, continues his study of modern religion with the ultimate test of faith--the Death of God.
Anthony Van Horne is a disgraced oil freighter Captain who lost his post after a disastrous collision with a reef in the Gulf of Mexico that spilled crude over a 20 mile stretch of Texas coastline. His ablutions prove fruitful, because it is he who the archangel Raphael chooses to helm the most important salvage operation of all time. Yes, God is dead and floating supine in tropical waters. The angels, who are dying of empathy, have carved him a tomb in the Antartic and want Van Horne to take control of his recently repaired oil freighter, find the Corpus Dei, and tow it to its icy grave.
Joining Van Horne is Thomas Ockham, the controversial New York priest cum physicist, personally selected by the Vatican in consultation with the archangel Gabriel to be the spiritual leader of the expedition. The Vatican has its own goal--due to the calculations of its powerful computer OMNIVAC, it has determined that due to the size of the corpse, brain death may not have fully occurred, and the faster the corpse is frozen, the better the chance that God's neurons might be saved. Along the way, Van Horne rescues Dr. Cassandra Fowler, adrift in the tropics due to a failed trip to the Galapagos Islands in a recreation of Darwin's famous voyage in the Beagle.
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By R. Morell on Dec 18 2002
Format: Paperback
I came across Morrow's novels through a Freethinker's website. I don't know whether I'm a theist or not, but I appreciate the idea of a post-theist world. There are some masterful moments in this book, which I had a hard time putting down. I read the whole series in 4 days! (I intend to write reviews of "Blameless in Abaddon" and "The Eternal Footman.") I was tickled by the subplot involving Cassie Fowler and her little coffee klatsch of free-thinkers. I know someone just like her so I couldn't help but think of this woman as I was reading.
There were a number of fairly well-developed minor characters as well. Weisinger will stay with me for a long time to come as will Fr. Thomas Ockham. Morrow doesn't condescend to his theistic characters, though he is rightfully unsympathetic to the one representative of oranized religion that appears in the book. And at the close, I did find myself getting emotional. At the beginning of the book, Raphael hints at what will be coming at the end -- a scene with Van Horne's dysfunctional father. I found myself crying at that scene, but I am an old softy.
It's a very good read, and one that I found more fruitful than Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. I can't help but compare the two in my head. They're very different, but they say similar things and I think this one is superior.
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