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Reviews


 

“‘Philip, you–and all the rest of you, too–have been with me for almost three years and yet you still don’t know me.’

“We were shocked to hear these words. All twelve of us had been his closest associates these past three years. We had traveled throughout our home country with him. We had carefully observed him interact with all types of people in all manner of circumstances. We were puzzled, dismayed, even angry at what we thought was his unjust and untrue characterization of us, his dearest friends. Had our service to him and his cause been in vain?”

Within these pages, Garrett Whitworth introduces The Man Nobody Knew, the man every person somehow innately desires to know. It’s an irresistible, compelling, surprising road trip from Nazareth to Jerusalem, from a wooden manger to a wooden tree. Feel the Palestinian dust in your sandals, savor fish, freshly-roasted over an open fire by the Sea of Galilee, see him walk on water and raise the dead, hear him say, “Follow me.”

[ Ted Hamilton, M.D. ]

 

I loved this book. I related with the disciples as they walked side by side with Jesus. Their questions were my questions. Their misunderstandings were mine. This book left me, like them, loving, thankful, and wanting more of our Savior. This book helps us get into the mind of the people who lived beside Him, could see Him, but never saw Him for who He was … until He was out of sight.

[ Goodreads • Abby Girl#01 ]

 

After reading the Gospels all my life, I appreciate the completely different perspective. It felt as though I was hearing some things for the first time, and “John” does a great job introducing and explaining concepts and events. I loved reading familiar stories contextualized so differently. It’s a wonderful combination of something familiar with something new.

The Man Nobody Knew makes me feel as though I’m there. It engages my senses. The way the Gospels are written, I feel as though I’m an onlooker. This book makes me feel as though I’m a participant, which is an amazing perspective.

It’s exciting to experience the gradual revelation and realization of Jesus’s identity and mission. I see Jesus as I’ve never seen Him before.

[ Amazon • Elizabeth ]

 

Mr. Whitworth did an exemplary job in concisely researching and piecing together Christ’s life and actions in an understandable, easy to read story. He deliver the account in a clear narrative of the work, the words and the miracles of Jesus. Told through John, an original disciple and Apostle, it offered a fresh approach to expand one’s knowledge of the life of Christ. Highly recommended!

[ Amazon Customer ]

 

I read the first page and the last page to determine whether to invest any additional time in a new book. This book begins with a whisper rather than a bang, “The first time I saw the man was next to a river that flowed through the desert not far from my home.” It ends with a promise rather than a conclusion, “In ten days time, we would be filled with God the Holy Spirit, and we would enter upon the next great adventure of our lives.” I decided to read more, and it was worth the investment. I’ve come to know the mysterious man by the river in a personal, intimate way, through the eyes and voice of one of his best friends. I want to be his friend, too.

[ Amazon • JackieWillCook ]

 

Kirkus Review

A novelized synthesis of Jesus’ story in the New Testament.

Whitworth’s debut takes the four Gospels and reworks them into an I, Claudius–style historical novel, told from the viewpoint of the Apostle John. Readers first meet John as a teenager living in the Galilean fishing town of Capernaum, and the story follows a straightforward chronological line as he describes events that will be familiar to readers of the Bible. He meets a charismatic itinerant preacher named Jesus and follows him, along with a steadily increasing number of others, including such famous figures as Matthew, Peter, and Judas. They and their master experience such events as Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, his walking on water, the feeding of the multitudes, prophetic teachings, the entry into Jerusalem, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection. Through it all, Jesus himself is alternately very direct (“God’s kingdom is no longer coming; it is here now, standing right in front of you”) and steadfastly aloof—hence the book’s title, referencing Jesus’ remark that “Nobody knows the son.” But readers conversant in the New Testament will find John’s (and Whitworth’s) Jesus to be significantly more approachable than the one in Scripture. This version tells his Apostles, “You are shocked by what I said about my family yesterday, and you deserve an explanation”—and then actually gives a straightforward explanation, free of cryptic parables. This Jesus even clarifies some of his more baffling comments, as when he flatly declares that nothing a man takes into his mouth can defile his body, and then offers an elaboration found nowhere in the Gospels. Whitworth’s reconfiguration can cause problems regarding fidelity to the source material, but it does show a thoroughly human Messiah and provides a rich portrait of his friendships with his Apostles. Readers of Christian historical fiction will find it thought-provoking and immensely enjoyable.

An engaging novel of a Jesus who’s very much man as well as God.

[ Kirkus Indie, Kirkus Media LLC, 6411 Burleson Rd., Austin, TX 78744 indie@kirkusreviews.com ]

 

This book is not a commentary on the life of Jesus, packed with technical detail and scholarly interpretation. It is not a daily devotional, dedicated to personal spiritual formation. It is not a lectionary or carefully programmed outline of study. It is a story, a story of Jesus the Christ, drawn from the perspective of ‘the disciple Jesus loved’, as illuminated by the thoughtful imagination of the author. In these pages, Garrett Whitworth brings the worn feet of Jesus out of the dusty pages of history, and gently compels the reader to walk alongside and come to know him. More about truth than mere fact, more about narrative than philosophy, more about ‘up close and personal’ than ‘distant and far away’, this book introduces a real man to real people. It’s worth the read—really.

[ Amazon • ThomasReader ]

 

Well worth the read. Brings the story of Jesus to life through the eyes of the youngest disciple, John. While the author calls it a novel it contains such a rich collection of actual quotes from the Gospel if almost has the feel of a paraphrase. The author’s sanctified imagination improved by a deep personal relationship with Jesus and rich acquaintance the gospel story has allowed him to construct scenes that are both faithful to the spirit of the New Testament and yet enrich the reader’s awareness of what life was like walking with the Master in real life.

[ Amazon • Glenn Aufderhar ]

 

I have been savoring every chapter of this book and the intimate way in which it portrays the relationship between Jesus and His disciples. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to get a clearer look into the way Jesus dealt with people. I have looked forward to each morning during my quiet time to get new glimpses of Jesus. I would highly recommend this book.

[ Amazon • Larry Mckinstry ]

 

A well written and well researched historical novel. While the story is know to everyone the author provides a new perspective and I believe you will find the book hard to put down. I highly recommend this wonderful book!

[ Amazon Customer ]

 

Wow…what a great perspective to look at the life & times of Jesus Christ through the eyes of apostle John. Going through the four gospel books, in chronological order, really enhances your understanding of the sacrifices our Lord & Savior made for us, This is an easy read & I highly recommend it.

[ Amazon • David Perry ]

 

Reading this book it is plain to see there is more to Jesus than most people have any idea of. It is clear that ‘John’ wants to help people know Jesus is more than a great man. ‘John’ also makes it clear that Jesus wants to know every one of us — personally. That’s what I love about this book.

[ Amazon • Patricia H. ]

 

An expertly researched, thought provoking, and throughly entertaining account of the life of Jesus. A historical novel that the entire family can enjoy.

[ Amazon • W. W. ]

 

Outstanding novel, inspirational and a fascinating read. Whitworth is a wonderful author and creates a perspective that keeps you engaged.
[ Amazon . Stephen ]

The Seemingly Distant Jesus Becomes a Very Real Person by Jerry Willis

The Man Nobody Knew by Garrett C. Whitworth is a refreshing surprise to me. I say that because I majored in theology and received a masters degree at seminary, so I have read the Bible several times and hundreds of books related to the Bible. Many decades ago the theological world was debating the concept of the “real” Jesus—not the one the Scriptures portrayed, for he seemed two other-worldly. Whitworth has done something I have never encountered before. Through a simple narrative written by John, Jesus’ apostle, he has brought to life the story of Jesus and how he affected the lives of those around them. I felt I was actually there with Jesus and John as the story moves through the many activities of the life of Jesus. Whitworth has skillfully pieced together the many parts of the story into a whole picture. Jesus is completely a man of love in all that he does, entirely approachable, as Son demonstrating what the Father is like, a man who was set on his mission knowing he would be murdered, but also believing that he would be raised after death. I felt I was actually personally there for all of his life. The experiences of his life which John did not know about are expertly woven into the narrative in dialogue with Jesus’ mother, his followers, fellow apostles, and Jesus himself. You may not agree with Whitworth in every detail he has written, but you surely will come away feeling you were there and with John and his fellow apostles finally get to know The Man Nobody Knew! You certainly won’t regret having purchased and read this wonderful historical novel about the God/man who changed the whole world.