Thursday, October 9, 2014

Keepers of the Covenant by Lynn Austin // Book Review

20665083// Keepers of the Covenant //

By Lynn Austin

{Book Review by Bethany}

Publisher: Bethany House

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher through Litfuse publicity group

Publication Date: October 7th, 2014

Number of Pages: 480

ISBN: 0764212710

 Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

// Book Synopsis //

Taken from Good Reads

"The Old Testament Comes to Thrilling Life in the Latest from Lynn Austin

In one life-changing moment, the lives of the Jewish exiles in Babylon are thrown into confusion and despair when a decree arrives from the king's palace in Susa. It calls for the annihilation of every Jewish man, woman, and child throughout the empire on the thirteenth day of Adar, in less than one year. Ezra, a quiet Jewish scholar and teacher, is suddenly called upon to lead the community as they seek God for a reason for this catastrophe. When a second decree arrives, authorizing them to fight back, Ezra is thrust into the role of military leader as they defend themselves against their enemies.

When the battles come to an end, Ezra's brother Jude is dead and Ezra is required by the Law he so diligently studies to marry Jude's widow, Devorah, and provide an heir. Fatherhood changes Ezra, and he asks God to make a way for him and the other exiles to leave Babylon for good and return to Jerusalem. His prayers are answered and the exiles move to Judea to revitalize worship at the temple--but the fight to keep God's Law is never easy. As more and more of his community are tempted, a new battle emerges...this one for the survival of God's covenant and the souls of His chosen faithful."

// Bethany's Book Review //

I love this author, and have really enjoyed several of her previous releases. But sadly, I had a hard time enjoying this book as much as I wanted to. I felt the same way about the first book in this series, Return to Me. Even though I had a hard time getting into the first book, I decided to still give this sequel a try, and am glad I did.

I've always thought that biblical fiction is such an interesting genre that has so much potential. Sadly this genre isn't as popular as others, which is why I really wanted to love this novel, being how there aren't many books out there like this one. For some reason, I just had a hard time getting into the story. I love any type of book that is girly and feminine, and I don't think this story really fit into that, as there were more male characters, and it wasn't a sparkly book due to the setting. While this is in no way a bad thing, I think all the males and the setting was something that I'm not quite used to and it took a bit of adjusting to go that far back in time. This is really only one of the things I can think of that made me like the book instead of loving it, as there wasn't anything I particularly disliked.

This book is nearly 500 pages, and for a while it was a bit daunting to look at the sheer length of it! Being that the novel was as long as it was, I think the author did a good job making the story read smoothly without getting dry. There were so many different characters, and the book covers such a long period of time, making it a bit hard to keep up at times for me personally. However it wasn't a huge deal, as things kept moving smoothly.

Out of all the characters and their stories, I think my favorite was Amina's. It was such an interesting one that I enjoyed-especially the ending! However the other story lines were a just so-so for me, making Amina's story the highlight of the book for me.

Overall, this was a nice one-time read for me. Being able to go back in time to Bible times was such an exciting journey! I recommend this book for fans of biblical fiction!

D I S C L A I M E R :: I received a free copy of Keepers of the Covenant from the publisher to review. I was not paid to do so, and all thoughts expressed are my own, completely honest and unbiased.