Fascinating and Challenging

Cleopatra, Ancient Egypt’s most famous queen, is a fascinating character who has intrigued many throughout history. When I discovered that Angela Hunt’s newest Biblical Fiction novel from Bethany House would be about this infamous woman, I definitely wanted to give it a try! “Egypt’s Sister” is book number one in “The Silent Years” series, and tells the story of Cleopatra through the eyes of her (fictitious) childhood friend and daughter of the royal tutor. Continue reading

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An Unforgettable Retelling of a Timeless Story

img_0140Are you familiar with the Bible story of Boaz and Ruth? I’m guessing you probably are. If you are like me, you’ve probably read numerous retellings based on this timeless story of love, grace, and redemption. While many of those retellings are well-done, none can compare with the new version by Jill Eileen Smith, entitled “Redeeming Grace: Ruth’s Story“, published by Revell in 2017. I have only read one other Bible-based novel by this talented author, but it is clear that her writing style and impeccably researched historical details are unrivaled in her genre. Continue reading

A Unique Story Just in Time for Easter

the-dog-who-was-there-imageAs the Easter season approaches each year, I enjoy being on the lookout for new stories that highlight the theme of Jesus’ last days on earth. This year I found a story that is told from perhaps the most unique perspective I’ve come across so far – through the eyes of a small, innocent dog! “The Dog Who Was There: A Novel” was written by Ron Marasco and published by Thomas Nelson early in 2017. In this sweet and oh-so-endearing story, a little dog named Barley Continue reading

A Sweet Retelling from Scripture

In-the-fields-of-grace1As someone who has always enjoyed the biblical book of Ruth, I was delighted when I discovered a fictional retelling of the story by renowned author Tessa Afshar. Published by Moody’s River North Fiction in 2014, the book is aptly entitled “In the Field of Grace”. If you enjoy biblical fiction of any kind, this book will be a welcome addition to your library for many reasons, including:

  • The story is masterfully told, flowing easily and smoothly.
  • The characters, both primary and secondary, are convincing and compelling, (which is not always the case with biblical fiction).
  • Including an accurate portrayal of the narrative from Scripture, the story also contains numerous little details that bring it to life in a believable and relatable way. Interestingly, the additional information takes care not to detract from the facts.
  • Although several scenes and conversations border on inappropriate, I admire the author’s careful avoidance of stepping over the sometimes-obscure boundaries of morality in Christian Historical Fiction.
  • Although the language of the characters occasionally feels a bit too “modern” for the time period, the author explains this in her notes when she says, “I want to create a world that feels like the biblical era and yet connects emotionally to my reader. You might say my language resembles more of a New Living Translation vibe than the literal accuracy of a translation such as the English Standard Version.”

Overall, this story is a sweet and enjoyable retelling of a timeless tale from Scripture. Although it was the first book I’ve read by Tessa Afshar, it certainly won’t be the last! If you enjoy the story of Ruth, Naomi, and Boaz, and don’t mind a bit of fiction combined with facts to create a compelling novel, don’t miss “In the Fields of Grace”.

I received this book courtesy of Moody Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Intriguing Premise, Disappointing Details

14353_CountedWiththeStars_sliderThe Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt, as told through the eyes of a young Egyptian girl… Truly, Biblical Fiction doesn’t get any more unique than this! “Counted with the Stars”, the first book in the “Out from Egypt” series, was written by Connilyn Cossette and published by Bethany House in the spring of 2016. As you step into the pages of the story, be prepared to witness the historic plagues of Exodus, and the fascinating culture of Ancient Egypt, as never before. Continue reading

Deborah’s Story Comes to Life

the prophetess headerIf you favor historical fiction of any kind, and ESPECIALLY if you enjoy Biblical fiction, you are certain to adore Jill Eileen Smith’s newest release from Revell, entitled “The Prophetess: Deborah’s Story”. As second in the “Daughter’s of the Promised Land” series, this book is also a standalone novel that will capture your attention and imagination from the first page. Continue reading

“Witness the Manhunt that Changed the Course of Human History” – “Risen”, the Novelization

 

risenbannerphoto“The Story of the Resurrection as You’ve Never Seen It Before”.

This is the tagline for a new movie entitled Risen, releasing in February of 2016 and just in time for the Easter season. It sounds intriguing, don’t you think? Only a few weeks earlier, the novelization of this major motion picture released from Bethany House Publishers as a precursor to the movie. The novel was written by Angela Hunt and based on the story by Paul Aiello, who also created the screenplay along with Kevin Reynolds. As the tagline suggests, this IS a resurrection story that is unique, unexpected, and compelling in many ways. Unfortunately though, it contains several less-than-desirable qualities as well. Continue reading