220 The Year of Living Biblically: One Man’s Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible, by A.J. Jacobs (2007)
A quasi-amusing, semi-informative book, this tells of Jacobs’ attempts to live for a year according to all of the laws and proscriptions set out in the Bible. Of course, doing so requires deciding which version of the Bible to follow, figuring out what the Bible really says, and learning how to deal with all of the strange stares that he got as a heavily bearded man in New York City. Jacobs gets advice on all these (well, perhaps not the stares) from various religious leaders, from snake handlers to rabbis to the fundamentalist museum/ theme park that teaches creationism using animatronic dinosaurs.* Not surprisingly, Jacobs finds that it’s difficult to live life literally, though literalism serves him well when it comes to figuring out ways to fulfill passages requiring stoning or other illegal or unethical acts.
*I think I’m remembering these details correctly– but please don’t tell me if I’m not. I mean, animatronic dinosaurs teaching Biblical creationism in a Noah’s Ark themed amusement park. What could be more bizarre?