Deborah Rising: A Novel Inspired by the Bible by Avraham Azrieli

Deborah Rising: A Novel Inspired by the Bible

byAvraham Azrieli

Kobo ebook | September 27, 2016

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In the tradition of The Red Tent, The Fifth Mountain, and The Mists of Avalon comes this absorbing historical novel that reimagines the life of one of the Bible's most revered women, the prophetess Deborah, and her epic journey to fulfill her destiny.

Deborah's father dreamed that his daughter would one day become a prophet of the God of the Israelites. But the social and religious mores of her time dictated that a woman must marry—even against her will—and obey her husband. When Deborah is forced into an engagement with the violent son of her local judge, the young Hebrew woman rebels, determined to forge a new path.

Captivated by the notion of transforming herself into a man to escape the arranged marriage and fulfill her father's dream, Deborah embarks upon an epic journey across the desert to find a mysterious elixirist rumored to be blessed with the gift of turning women into men. It is a journey that proves increasingly perilous—filled with wild beasts, lustful men, unscrupulous priests, and warring tribesmen. Yet Deborah discovers that she is not alone; an unlikely coterie of lepers, slaves, Moabite traders, and even a dead tiger come to her aid and defense along the way.

Part traditional biblical fiction, part adventure, Deborah Rising is a captivating tale about the early life of one of the most famous figures from the Old Testament—a woman of courage and spirit whose battle to overcome discrimination, sexism, and paternalism speaks to women's lives today.

Title:Deborah Rising: A Novel Inspired by the BibleFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:September 27, 2016Publisher:HarperLegendLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062563556

ISBN - 13:9780062563552

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Rated 3 out of 5 by from Life for a Woman in Old Testament Times I bought this book because I enjoy biblical fiction and because I liked the title. The opening sentence really grabs you, for starters, but as the chapter continues, the horror, greed, and injustice of the situation is disgusting — but compelling. If you ever needed an argument that power corrupts or that life for a woman could be hell, this book is it. Deborah is an orphan — both of her parents killed by marauders — and at the beginning she has a sister, Tamar, one year her senior and Judge Sifron of Ephraim has adopted them. It is Tamar who is to be judged and stoned on the accusation of not being a virgin when wed the day before to the judge’s son. Her husband, Seesya, is a cruel, vicious young man not quite 20 years old. He is what his father has made him and now rules his father because he has command of the soldiers. The whole town fears him, including the priest and Tamar has no-one to stand up for her. Of course, she is not allowed to speak for herself. Before stoning her, Seesya puts his ring on Deborah’s hand and declares her to be his next bride. The only one in the whole town brave enough to defy the law is the blacksmith’s son, Barac, a friend of Deborah’s. When it’s his turn to throw a stone, he refuses because it’s a sin “to desecrate the dead”. Barac and his father flee to escape Seesya’s wrath and Deborah does the same but is recaptured. From this point on, Deborah is a determined fugitive. Her home, Palm Homestead and its famous Egyptian-built cistern, is why Seesya wants to marry her. Having married Tamar, he owns half of the inheritance; when he marries Deborah, it will all be his and he can channel and sell water to all the neighbouring farms. Deborah’s convinced that if she marries Seesya, she will suffer the same fate as her sister and that her only hope to fulfill the prophecy revealed to her father on the eve of her birth — that she would become a prophet — is to become a boy. She has heard of an Edomite, a potion-maker, who was able to turn women into men to fight for their king. Deborah determines to find him and become a man and fight to restore her homestead to herself and fulfill Yahweh’s promise that she will sit under its palm tree and dispense justice and prophesies to her people. Deborah is feisty and trusts in Yahweh, that He will guide her and provide the shortcuts to reach her goal. However, she escapes from one scrape only to land in another. She encounters lepers, merchants, corrupt priests, weak women who promise to help but then cannot, and becomes Seesya’s bride to discover exactly how Tamar was condemned as a whore. It is a fast-paced story full of peril and adventure and lots of interesting cultural background of the times but at times too cruel and gory for my taste. The second instalment is due out March 1/17 (estimated) and I will buy it but I am going to be more careful in the future because I really don’t like unexpected cliff-hangers.
Date published: 2017-01-26