Sunday, October 9, 2016

review of the new Ben-Hur by Carol Wallace

Ben-Hur: A Tale of the ChristAs one of the bestselling stories of all time, Lew Wallace's Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ has captivated and enthralled millions around the world--both in print and on the big screen. Now Lew's great-great-granddaughter has taken the old-fashioned prose of this classic novel and breathed new life into it for today's audience.

Coming to theaters in August 2016 as Ben-Hur, a major motion picture from MGM and Paramount studios, the story follows Judah Ben-Hur, a Jewish nobleman whose childhood friend Messala betrays him. Accused of trying to murder the new Roman governor in Jerusalem, Judah is sentenced to the galley ships and vows to seek revenge against the Romans and Messala. But a chance encounter with a carpenter from Nazareth sets Judah on a different path.

Rediscover the intrigue, romance, and tragedy in this thrilling adventure.

Also included: the inspiring story-behind-the-story of Lew Wallace--Indiana lawyer, author, and Civil War general.

You may have heard of or seen the new version of the famous Ben-Hur movie. Well, to go along with the film is a new version of the classic book itself! This is the classic story which inspired and made the Charlton Heston film we all love. Now, years later, the original author's granddaughter Carol Wallace presents an updated version for today's readers. 
I have not seen the film- I am sure it is interesting to watch although I see no need for a remake of one of the best films of all time. Also, I think it sad that Carol Wallace said she was never able to get into her grandfather's literary masterpiece. I am disappointed- greatly disappointed- with the dumbing-down of that original Ben Hur into this far TOO easy-to-read version. This edition is like the typical Christian romances written recently. The reader's brain does no work as he reads the tale; the focus of the book is on emotions and thoughts and romance with no literary value. There are no thought-provoking aspects this book. I am sorry to be so critical but I don't understand the literary weakness of readers today! We need to expand our minds and read older literature. One thing I found interesting which the author Carol Wallace pointed our about the original book is that Lew Wallace spent much of the book describing the surroundings and settings of the Middle Eastern region in Ben Hur because Lew Wallace's 1900's readers wouldn't have known too much about that remote and mysterious lands. In contrast, today's readers have seen hundreds of pictures/videos of those lands and perhaps even visited them! So the majority of the lengthy descriptions would be unwelcome for today's readers. 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.