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Walking The Bible: A journey by land through the five books of Moses [Paperback]

Bruce Feiler
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

25 April 2002
Is the Bible just an abstraction or a real living breathing entity? Bruce Feiler attempts to answer this question in Walking the Bible. Part adventure story, part archaeological detective work, part spiritual exploration, this is the account of his perilous 10,000-mile journey across the Middle East in search of the roots of one of mankind's most influential books.· Traces Biblical events from the landing of Noah's ark's on Mount Ararat in Turkey to the site of the legendary burning bush overlooking the Promised Land· Gathers the latest archaeological research about each site· Follows passages of the Bible in their actual settings· Explores how geography affects the larger narrative of the Old Testament. Written in vivid, lively prose this is a riveting account of the Bible and exploration of faith.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus; New edition edition (25 April 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749922842
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749922849
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 816,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


'An instant classic...' Washington Post Book World

About the Author

Bruce Feiler is the award-winning author of four previous books. He has written for The New Yorker, Washington Post, and Cond Nast Traveller. A native of Savannah, Georgia, he lives in New York City.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Magic Carpet Ride Through The Bible 13 Jun 2007
By James Gallen TOP 1000 REVIEWER
"Walking The Bible" takes the reader on a magic carpet ride through the lands in which the Pentateuch was acted out. Following his own quest, Author Bruce Feiler tries to identify the places at which the Patriarchs of Israel and their successors down to Moses struggled to follow the guidance of God through their journeys of life. Although a Jew primarily interested in the Books of Moses, he frequently includes references to the places and events of significance in or to the life of Jesus.

Feiler approaches the topic through many avenues. He tries to identify the places, understand the world of Biblical times and learn about the Bible from the people who live on the land, both those drawn there by their interest in the Bible and those who naturally follow the ways of life lived by the Patriarchs. Throughout this journey, Feiler gradually absorbs the truth of the Bible, rather than directly learning them.

Along his journey his companion, Avner, a renowned Israeli archeologist, points out significant points and explains the subtleties which facilitate Feiler's understanding of what he is seeing. Throughout their travels through Turkey, Israel, Gaza, Egypt and Jordan, Feiler and Avner stop and read the portions of the Bible pertaining to the areas being visited.

Throughout the trip, Feiler engages people along the way in discussions about what the Bible means to them and how it affects their lives. Much of the book consists of his own thinking and philosophizing about what it all means. The author is obviously on a search for something which he finds in the land, the people, but most of all, in himself.

I found this book to be fascinating. As a Christian, it helped me gain a greater understanding of the stories of the Old Testament.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Bruce S. Feiler's literal quest for a spiritual connection to the Torah, (the Pentateuch), that he studied as a boy, resulted in a ten-thousand mile journey in which he retraced the steps of his Biblical forefathers across three continents. His friend and guide, renowned Israeli archaeologist Avner Goren, accompanied him on his travels through Turkey, Israel, the Palestinian territories, the Nile Valley, the Sinai Peninsula and Jordan, visiting the legendary scenes of the greatest stories ever told. In an interview, Feiler once said that he had always thought of the Bible "as this foreboding black book with gilt-edge pages." When visiting Israel, before making this trip, a close friend was pointing out places of interest, (an understatement)! "Over there," he said, "is the rock where Abraham went to sacrifice Isaac." It dawned on Feiler that he was not in Disneyworld or Kansas! He realized the places mentioned in the black book's gilt pages are real - one can see, and feel them. The idea came to him then to "retrace the Bible through the desert and read the stories along the way." And along the way he found himself using the "Bible as a Baedeker."
Bruce and Avner trekked by foot, car, jeep, camel and rowboat in order to examine archeological evidence, get a feel for the geography of each place, interview hundreds of people from Bedouins to pilgrims and tourists, consider historical theory, study and contemplate theology and religious myth, in their attempt to put the Biblical narrative into a historical and cultural context. Together they search for the "real" Mount Sinai, where it is written that God revealed Himself and subsequently delivered the Book of the Covenant to Moses.The location of this sacred mount is up for debate.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A gift well received. 6 Nov 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Sent to my daughter as a one off gift. Great value for a large hardback & an interesting book too.
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4.0 out of 5 stars fascinating archeological investigation 15 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Feiler has a real gift for intellectual curiosity and a clear, unpretentious writing style. The academic experts he befriends and travels with add much to his narrative; I found myself wishing I could have lunch with them all. I am not especially interested in the spiritual side of this book, but Feiler is never overbearing and he never loses sight of the connection between landscape, history, and the religious heritage of so many different faiths. Readers who are more interested in Feiler's spiritual musings will find much to think about and learn a lot in the process. Fascinating writer, fascinating, unpretentious book.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Little walking of only part of the Bible 2 Jan 2010
An engaging if highly selective view of the Holy Land.

The title is rather misleading - only the first five books of the Bible are covered, and the walking is limited to parts inaccessible by off-road vehicle. Still, The Pentateuch by Jeep is not very catchy as a title.
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