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Trigell’s fourth novel is a high-octane take on the post-Crucifixion schism that emerged between Judaism and Christianity amid the brutality of Roman rule. Written with an inventive wit and verve, this is an impressive distillation of the Christian myth in the earthy poetry of the everyday vernacular; his portrayal of the Crucifixion is particularly visceral… a bravura and original performance.

(Mail on Sunday)


Trigell’s version is ingenious and riveting. He is brilliant in his recreation of the visceral baseness of being human; this is a Judea mired in dung and blood and superstition. (The Times)


a committed attempt to compare the harsh reality of Jesus’s life with the embroidered versions that spread following his death… This is a story that invents in order to see through invention. (Independent on Sunday)


The settings and events are described in such muscular yet sensuous language that you almost feel you’re there. (Historical Novel Society)


The Tongues of Men or Angels is Jonathan Trigell’s bold attempt at an ironic, modern retelling of the events surrounding the crucifixion and Paul’s subsequent evangelising of his version of Jesus’s message… an ingeniously structured, lively narrative of the birth of Christianity. (The Sunday Times)


Trigell is a very good writer — and also knows his text inside out. This really helps, because it gives him a very rich support cast: Philemon’s slave is a fictional triumph, really well fleshed out from the scanty available evidence… It underpins what must be Trigell’s greatest achievement: he has created a Saul/Paul (with back-story, complexity, real psychological depth) who might actually have written the epistles — welding that extraordinary mixture of commitment, self-righteousness, touchy insecurity, surprising moments of sweetness, and mystical passion into a single coherent character. (Church Times)


Trigell has researched his subject thoroughly and fairly, and is able to reinterpret events in an interesting light… a lively, engaging, ambitious, nuanced and thought-provoking novel. (Work Shy Fop)


This daring novel tells the story of Jesus and his followers in the years leading up to and following the Crucifixion. Trigell's interpretation of the origins of Christianity, particularly the factional struggle between the disciple Cephas (Peter) and the convert Saul (Paul), will spark controversy, but there's no denying the raw power of the writing.  (Mail on Sunday)


This ambitious book by Jonathan Trigell captures the battle for the soul of the early church ... the best of it ranges from thought-provoking to stunning. Trigell is superb on capturing the blood, dung and superstition of Judea in the 1st century AD.  

(The Times)

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