A Biography

Alexander Waugh

Thomas Dunne Books

This is a book about God.

Not just any god, but the god that created Adam and Eve; the god of Abraham, the god of the Jews; the god of the Christians; and the god of Islam---without a doubt, the most influential figure in the history of human civilization. But what do we really know about him? Who is he? Where did he come from? What does he look like? What sort of character does he have? What, if anything, does he eat? Does he have a family? In what ways can he be said to even exist at all?

Alexander Waugh has been asking questions like these for as long as he can remember. Now, having drawn from an enormous range of sources, from the sacred books of the Torah, the Christian New Testament, and the Islamic Qur'an, from the Greek Apocrypha and the ancient texts of Nag Hammadi to the Dead Sea Scrolls, he has sought out the answers. Using material gleaned from the diverse writings of saints, rabbis, historians, prophets, atheists, poets, and mystics, he has molded his findings into a singular, striking biographical portrait of God.

Erudite, perceptive, and entertaining, God reveals many startling and unexpected characteristics of the divine being. From the simple stories of Genesis and Job, explored from God's own viewpoint, to the prophecies of Muhammad and Sybil and the intricate philosophies of Newton and Nietzsche, Alexander Waugh has left no stone unturned in his compulsive mission to create a fascinating and complex portrait of God, as humans have claimed to understand him.


Praise for God

"Waugh's critique is ingenious. . . . He argues brilliantly."
--Karen Armstrong, author of A History of God

"Deeply felt and genuine . . .Waugh's biography is a search for love---and strangely, the god he leaves us with, however impossible, remains attractive." ---Jeanette Winterson, The Times

"Immensely entertaining, and a sovereign remedy against the absurdities and dangers of religious belief . . . clever and perceptive." ---Literary Review

"Waugh has produced a monumental jeu d'ésprit, a testimony to human ingenuity and imagination, a cornucopia of bizarre musings on a perennial theme." ---Financial Times

"Peculiar and delightful . . . I loved it." ---Mail on Sunday

"A tremendously funny book with a serious purpose." ---Scotland on Sunday

"Ten out of ten for the title. And ten out of ten for the idea, the approach, the style, the writing---above all the writing---and the sublime audacity of it all." ---Michael Brown, Yorkshire Post

"Waugh's scholarship is extremely impressive." ---New Humanist

"I feel enriched---though not in a manner that would please the parish priest---for having accompanied Waugh on his irreverent quest." ---Belfast Telegraph

"An exhilarating train ride. As an atheist I was much heartened by this book." ---The Spectator

"If God has a sense of humor then I suspect that Waugh's reward will be in heaven." ---Rabbi Charles Middleburgh, Jewish Review

"We desperately need to be challenged to think clearly about the ways we believe in God and this book certainly does that." ---Rev. Harvey Richardson, Methodist Recorder

"Alexander Waugh deserves an accolade." ---Oxford Times

"This book makes mincemeat of theism . . . it should be compulsory reading for all schools and colleges." ---A. C. Grayling, Literary Review

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Alexander Waugh

  • Alexander Waugh was born in 1963, and is the grandson of Evelyn Waugh, and a son of columnist Auberon Waugh and novelist Teresa Waugh. After studying music at Manchester University, he became Chief Opera Critic at the Mail on Sunday and the London Evening Standard. He has written several books on music, including Classical Music: A New Way of Listening, which has been translated into fourteen languages. He is also a publisher, cartoonist, composer, and illustrator. He lives in Somerset, England, with his wife and three children.


Available Formats and Book Details


A Biography

Alexander Waugh

  • e-Book



Thomas Dunne Books