By the Rivers of Babylon

A Novel



In stock

(3 reviews) Write a Review

Other Editions and Formats

Product Details

Product Code:
1.19 (in)
Size (HxW):
8.31 x 5.56 (in)
Publication date:
November 28, 2022
19.04 oz
All Categories

Product Overview

This vivid novel presents the early life of the prophet Ezekiel, from his childhood to his service in the Temple to the Babylonian Captivity, where he was enslaved among the exiles along the River Chebar.

Ezekiel, a bricklayer, is simple and timid. He is not yet a priest, and his visions have not yet begun. He stands in the midst of the Jewish exiles as they struggle to build a town of their own, to remain faithful to God's covenant without the Temple, and to discern the various forces that threaten to divide them and erode their faith. All of these experiences flow like streams into Ezekiel's later mission to rally his people from inner destruction.

What makes a prophet? Why was this man chosen? Michael O’Brien offers an intimate glimpse into the mind and heart of a visionary.

Editorial Reviews

"Michael O'Brien is a superior spiritual storyteller worthy to join the ranks of Flannery O'Connor, Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh, and C. S. Lewis."
—Peter Kreeft, Author, Three Philosophies of Life; Professor of Philosophy, Boston College

"Of the many characters in the Old Testament, the prophet Ezekiel is often regarded (and disregarded) as the most bizarre. Yet Michael O’Brien reimagines his life with enormous sympathy. Beautifully crafted and thoroughly researched, this novel tells the fascinating story of a very fascinating man."
—Fr. Augustine Wetta, O.S.B., Author, Humility Rules

“The novel is so vivid that we too are caught up alongside the captive sage as he slogs, barefoot and beaten, into Babylonian exile. His story teaches us how to survive—even thrive—when worldly hopes slide to ruin, by entrusting heart and will to God's own divine plan.”
—David Pinault, Author, Providence Blue: A Fantasy Quest and The Crucifix on Mecca’s Front Porch

“With this book, O’Brien reminds us why he’s become the greatest storyteller of our times: he brings us crucified heroes like Ezekiel, the kindly bricklayer and builder of small bonfires of hope in a demonically oppressed land. Perhaps most vitally, O’Brien urges his numberless readers to confront the expanding Babylon of today.”
—Kevin Wells, Author, Priest and Beggar: The Heroic Life of Venerable Aloysius Schwartz

"By the Rivers of Babylon sifts the false prophet's saccharine ‘Peace!’ from the true honeyed scroll that is hard to stomach. Michael O'Brien's fictional exegesis of the book of Ezekiel does the leg work of contemplation for us, enfleshing the historical and entering the mystical, mingling psychological perspicacity with the Most High's unspeakable mysteries.”
—Joshua Hren, Author, Infinite Regress: A Novel and Contemplative Realism: A Theological-Aesthetical Manifesto


(3 reviews) Write a Review

3 Reviews Hide Reviews Show Reviews

  • 5
    Utterly Captivating

    Posted by John on Mar 30th 2024

    This novel was so good! I doubt I could praise it highly enough. O'Brien embellishes the life of Ezekiel to paint a clear and uncompromising portrait of what true manhood comprises - strength, patience, humility, confidence, generosity. Such a story! And such rich detail on day-to-day life in ancient Mesopotamia. I could not put this book down, and honestly had trouble reading through all the tears it evoked - not only sadness, but also joy and awe. I finished the book and opened my Bible to the Book of Ezekiel and it was perfectly conjoined - the Biblical Ezekiel begins at the very moment the novel ends. Marvelous! Bottom line, if you are a man, you should read this. I pray it will change my life; it certainly set the stage.

  • 5
    By The Rivers of Babylon

    Posted by Francis Deary on Mar 10th 2024

    An absolutely fantastic story, great reading and for me it brings the biblical book of Ezekiel alive. Well written and worth reading twice!

  • 5
    By The Rivers of Babylon

    Posted by Charles Schmidt on Dec 29th 2022

    By the Rivers of Babylon is a fictional account of the life of the Old Testament prophet Ezekiel. This story is so gripping and filled with characterization that it feels authentic and inspiring. This novel would make a good movie. Michael D O’Brien is an exceptional writer who not only delivers a good story but he also provides important life lessons. For example, the character Eli during his prayers praises God as the Giver of All Good Things. That’s true. God is Goodness Itself and the source of all goodness. The proper response is gratitude and to give thanks to our Creator. During the story, Ezekiel states: “There is no salvation here, save in working hard and not losing heart, in prayer and sacrifice for each other. Above all, if we are to be saved, it will be through our trust in the Lord, despite the fact that there is little in our new world on which to base our trust. Though we do not know what the future will bring, we may still live as children of the Most High. If we forget this, we will become slaves not only in body but in our very souls.” What is true for those Israelite slaves in Babylon is also true for us. This excellent novel with entertain and inspire you.