“What I like about this book is the interesting ideas it advances about how some things got off track during early Christianity. (I don't agree with the author about all of this). She writes well, and with an engaging blend of story-telling and grappling with the ideas involved.
What I don't like are some of the shortcuts she takes. I do not mind that she says Jesus viewed John's baptism as divinely sanctioned. I do mind that she cites Mk 11:30 as "the baptism of John came from heaven" when the text is a question. "Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men?" That Jesus clearly believes that the correct answer is "from heaven" makes the citation reasonable--what bothers me is snipping a quotation out in a misleading fashion, and calling it a quotation. This is nitpicking on my part, undoubtedly. But what is she doing with authors that I do not know quite as well as I know the gospels?
Those questions made me check up on some of the things that were surprising to me--and so far, she's been fair and accurate.
'It's more complicated than she makes it sound.' True, but that criticism can accurately be leveled against any historian. Even though I have a different take on some things than she does, she's a good historian. I'll keep an eye on her works in the future.”