The Schooldays of Jesus (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

Reading Coetzee's novel, The Schooldays of Jesus, and its predecessor, The Childhood of Jesus, one cannot help making comparisons with the narratives of the Jesus' life contained in the Synoptic Gospels. Coetzee's novels are not works of fictional biography, however, and are not intended to be read that way. Rather, they are purely works of fiction. Their success as fiction depends on the role Coetzee creates for his readers who hear the faint echoes of these other narratives at the edge of intelligibility and then refocus their attention on the works before them. -Graham

— From Spring Booknotes 2017



A New York Magazine Best Book of the Year

From the Nobel Prize-winning author J. M. Coetzee, the haunting sequel to The Childhood of Jesus, continuing the journey of David, Simon, and Ines

"When you travel across the ocean on a boat, all your memories are washed away and you start a completely new life. That is how it is. There is no before. There is no history. The boat docks at the harbour and we climb down the gangplank and we are plunged into the here and now. Time begins."

David is the small boy who is always asking questions. Simon and Ines take care of him in their new town, Estrella. He is learning the language; he has begun to make friends. He has the big dog Bolivar to watch over him. But he'll be seven soon and he should be at school. And so, with the guidance of the three sisters who own the farm where Simon and Ines work, David is enrolled in the Academy of Dance. It's here, in his new golden dancing slippers, that he learns how to call down the numbers from the sky. But it's here, too, that he will make troubling discoveries about what grown-ups are capable of. In this mesmerizing allegorical tale, Coetzee deftly grapples with the big questions of growing up, of what it means to be a "parent," the constant battle between intellect and emotion, and how we choose to live our lives.

About the Author

J. M. Coetzee won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2003 and is the author of twenty-two books, which have been translated into many languages. He was the first author to twice win the Booker Prize. A native of South Africa, he now lives in Adelaide, Australia.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780735222663
ISBN-10: 0735222665
Publisher: Viking
Publication Date: February 21st, 2017
Pages: 272
Language: English