Fans who loved Smith's surprise hit The Brick Testament: Stories from the Book of Genesis or who have enjoyed his popular Web site (www.thebricktestament.com) will relish this curious take on the Christmas story. Wise men out of Legos? A grumpy Lego King Herod who looks as though he hasn't slept in weeks? The book offers some hilarious sight gags; check out the fairy wings on the Angel Gabriel, or the rapidly protruding Lego shelf that is Mary's belly. And when Gabriel tells Mary that the Holy Ghost will come upon her, standing beside him is a friendly, smiling white ghost figure. Readers will be surprised to see some elements of the tale that are left out of the usual Hollywood renderings; Smith depicts the circumcision scene, for example, with Joseph standing over a very naked baby Jesus with a shiny dagger poised in an opportune spot. Despite the bemused, if cynical, tone that pervades the book, parents should note that not all of it is funny or suitable for small children. There's a disturbing image of soldiers murdering a male child, per Herod's decree, in front of his devastated mother; the background shows two decapitated children's heads rolling in blood. Still, Brick Testament fans will delight in this fresh rendering of another biblical tale, and the book should win Smith some new followers as well.
Reviewed on: 09/01/2004 Release date: 09/01/2004 Genre: Religion