“It may sound like a lie: I am His wife,” is the arresting opening declaration made by God’s Wife’s unnamed narrator, who will always be known through her role as an appendage, “at His side.” This premise immediately raises issues of power, domination, truth and belief. God’s Wife is ultimately a meditation on the power of literature to create a space of imaginative play. It is a love story, a philosophical treatise on the nature of faith and divinity, a self-conscious meditation on the nature of writing and creativity, and a feminist tract, all held together by the compelling authenticity of the narrator’s voice. Her voice is, of course, shaped by Amanda Michalopoulou’s inimitably spare and masterfully evocative prose, which, like the narrator’s mother’s brand of storytelling, uses few words and eschews didacticism.
Praise for God’s Wife
A beautiful and haunting portrait of a marriage that scrambled my thoughts on faith, power, love and sacrifice. This text embodies the act of questioning in a way that is at once startling and affirming. A gorgeous, important book. – Jac Jemc, author of The Grip of It and False Bingo
God’s Wife is an incredible book. Playful and deeply disturbing at the same time, fierce and funny, a romantic comedy and a profound philosophical treatise at the same time—and many, many other things. It’s a book like no other I’ve ever read, a book impossible to pull off. I have no idea how Amanda Michalopoulou did it. – Daniel Kehlmann, author of Measuring the World
God's Wife is a stunningly brilliant book. At every turn, it avoids obviousness and cliché. The writing, crisp, clear, clever and compelling. It is a moving love story that unfolds with the rigorous intellectual logic of a piece of first-rate theology, into a vast, beautiful repetitive loop that urges the reader on to make fresh associations and new lines of thought. Highly recommended. – Simon Critchley, author of The Book of Dead Philosophers
God’s Wife is a novel of marvels—and marvelous, in how splendidly Michalopoulou has conjured and told this story of the longing of a young girl for God, for great love. Her voice is charming and engaging, even though God doesn’t always answer her questions. God’s Wife is an allegorical work that speaks to these troubling times with an unusual voice, with wit and intelligence. – Lynne Tillman, author of Men and Apparitions
In Amanda Michalopoulou’s wonderfully strange, emphatically beautiful and often very funny new novel, a woman with a hard-earned grasp on quantum physics and complex spiritual doctrine composes a letter to those of us who still live in time (in the windowless room where she writes the word tomorrow is “as round and yellow as the moon”) about what it is like to live as wife to the All-Powerful. Her experiences with a Husband who reads Don Quixote and has eyes as “pure and clear as a dog’s,” sit at the heart of a brilliant exploration of time and being and the existential wonders and terrors of repetition. I can’t recommend it highly enough. – Laird Hunt, author of In the House in the Dark of the Woods
Amanda Michalopoulou is the internationally acclaimed author of several books of fiction, two of which have previously been published in English: I’d Like (Dalkey Archive Press, 2008) and Why I Killed My Best Friend (2014), both translated by Karen Emmerich. Her work, which has been translated into twenty languages, has been awarded the Diavazo Novel Prize, the Academy of Athens Award, and the International Literature Award by the National Endowment for the Arts among others. She lives in Athens, Greece.
Patricia Felisa Barbeito is Professor of American Literatures at the Rhode Island School of Design. Her translations include Their Smell Makes Me Want to Cry (Birmingham Modern Greek Translations, 2004), The Interrogation (Birmingham Modern Greek Translations, 2013), and The Great Chimera (Aiora, 2019).