For Jose Saramago, the life of Jesus Christ and the story of His Passion are things of this earth. A child crying, a gust of wind, the caress of a woman half-asleep, the bleat of a goat or the bark of a dog, a prayer uttered in the grayish morning light. The adolescent Jesus is very much an adolescent: questioning, uncompromising, troubled by the world and by his body. His mother, like any mother, is devoted, fearful, resentful. The Holy Family has the complex frictions of any family. Yet this is not simple, debunking realism, for Saramago also fills his pages with vision, dream, and omen. And the defiance of the authority of God the Father, the righteous indignation on behalf of man, the anger - is still not denial of Him.