🎁 The Magdalene Scrolls by Barbara Wood

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Description⎮Reviewed Jul. 2016

Narrator: Norman Gilligan
Length: 11h 29m
Publisher: Cherry Hill⎮1978 (in book format)

4.25 ★ Audiobook⎮ The first 75% of this story was adequately entertaining. I’m a sucker for anything dealing in Biblical lore and I think I have watched every historical documentary out there that focuses on biblical times, including several about the Dead Sea Scrolls. This interest also extends to written works and Mary Magdalene’s role in The da Vinci Code is what initially caused The Magdalene Scrolls to grab my attention. Although I am disappointed that Mary Magdalene is not featured (and is hardly even mentioned) in this particular story, I still found it to be quite enjoyable and engulfing.

Until the last 20 or 25%, that is. From that point on, things got kind of bizarre. There are times when I am listening to a story and think “This is weird… but I like it” and then there are times when I just think “This is plain weird.” The latter fourth of The Magdalene Scrolls was just plain weird to me. I understand that this is a novel about obsession (it clearly states that on the cover), but this author seems to have confused obsession with possession or possibly even reincarnation (it’s never clear which).

From my point of view, it seemed to be more about psychosis. The author is very vague about the bizarre twist the end of the book takes and fails to offer any sort of reasonable explanation. I’m not averse to the plot’s bizarre turn, just how it was written. The ending of this novel quite literally left me scratching my head.

I immensely enjoyed Barbara Wood’s writing style in the rest of the book, however, and would not be opposed to giving her work another try someday. My final feelings on this story can be summed up by saying that I generally liked it, even if I didn’t always understand it.

Narration review: Upon first beginning this audiobook, I mentally dubbed Norman Gilligan “documentary-voice dude” and thought how appropriate it was that he narrated this historical fiction audiobook. Judging by his voice’s tone, Gilligan seems like the perfect narrator for this type of story. The richness of his voice definitely enhanced the atmosphere of the story, although his characterization for male roles was definitely stronger than it was for the females, who tended to sound alike. ♣︎

This audiobook was graciously gifted to me by its publisher, Cherry Hill Publishing, in exchange for a review containing my honest thoughts and opinions. Thanks, Cherry Hill!

$ Available at Cherry Hill Publishing and Audible

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