Not exactly what I expected, but it was a decent story. From reviews and the book description, I was expecting a more substantial, 5 star, fast pace thriller with non-stop action. While this turned out to be more of a Christian Fiction story, where the main characters are time travelers that befriend Jesus and his deciples. It didn't really have a preachy (if that's a word) tone and I think both the religous and non-religous could enjoy it. It was a quick read, only 243 pages, about 2-1/2 to 3 stars in my opinion.
I went into this book quite excited as I enjoy both science fiction and biblical fiction. On the whole I was quite disappointed by the sophistication of the writing. I suspect that is a major reason why the novel is not published by a more mainstream label.
In the novel, two old friends work for a company working to develop a time travel device. One is a devout Christian, the other an affirmed atheist (stemming from a tragedy in his past). A successful test of such a device leads to the ability to go back in time. In a not-so-sober moment Tom, the atheist, brashly travels back to the time of the ministry of Jesus Christ in order to prove he was a fraud. David follows and the pair become an integral part of the twelve disciples. Hijinks ensure in the present (or future) time, leading to a climax culminating in a life changing realization for Tom.
As others have said, the book is certainly not too "preachy" and could be enjoyed by anyone. I do feel the story got a bit too fantastic toward the end with the appearance of Legion in the present day. Perhaps I wasn't expecting this element of fantasy in what I would otherwise consider a hard science fiction novel with historical elements.
In the end, I felt the book was not fleshed out enough. I see that Mr. Robinson has been involved in writing several comics--that is what the story felt like to me (and I think this novel would lend itself well to a graphic novel format). The concept was terrific but the actual descriptions of the characters, setting, science, etc. were a letdown. If you are looking for a quick read with some interesting ideas, I recommend 'The Didymus Contingency'...if you are looking for a serious scifi novel look elsewhere. I might recommend 'The Doomsday Book' by Connie Willis as an example of an extremely well written time travel adventure.
Truly sophomoric imagining of biblical events. To give credence to Rollins' review would be doing a disservice to Crighton and the "Left Behind" series. Written to the level of an eighth-grader. I continued reading it only to marvel at the increasingly ridiculous and inane plot twists.