My Tuesday column is up at First Things. Needing a distraction from Japan, I looked closer-to-home and ended up focusing on author James Frey and the planned Good Friday release of his latest book, The Final Testament of the Holy Bible, expressing both boredom and hopefulness about it:
I was unsurprised to read that this book—which will debut in a small run of only 11,000, underwritten by uber-gallery owner Larry Gagosian, with Frey self-publishing the inevitable second printing—is scheduled for release on Good Friday. But of course! A dull and unoriginal quest for attention demands a provocative launch-date, but I suspect Frey will not find his book greeted by the howling mobs of Christians he apparently hopes to see riled.
“I’m sure the religious right will go crazy because the story of Ben . . . is hardly the Messiah they have in mind. But I don’t really care. I just did what I always do—tried to write the best book I could.”
Oh, come now, Mr. Frey; you do care, enormously; you hope for nothing less than the equivalent of a Christian call to Fatwa and all the attendant attention, acclaim and sympathy such an event would engender among those whose favor you would curry.
How disappointed you will be to find your daring-do responded to with wide, noisy yawns and quiet, rather quaintly uttered prayers.
You can read it all, here