Tag Archives: Biblical fiction

First Line Friday — Stones of My Accusers

3 Apr

Happy Friday! I hope all is well with you and your family. This week I am again sharing a book from my TBR shelves. I had the great pleasure of meeting Tracy Groot a few years back. The members of my 2 book clubs and their guests spent a wonderful evening learning about writing and research. She was a delightful guest. And generous too! She gifted us with a signed copy of her novel, Stones of My Accusers. Set in the days after Christ’s crucifixion, this book is definitely one I need to read, especially now. Have you read this book? I’d love to know your thoughts.

 

For more fabulous first lines, head over to Hoarding Books.

 

A captivating, stand-alone sequel to The Brother’s Keeper, Stones of my Accusers reveals the transforming difference Christ’s mercy makes through the lives of several compelling characters. Joab and Jorah are each traveling separately to find a prostitute named Rivkah and inform her of her son, Nathanael’s, death. Joab has been commissioned to take Nathanael’s words to Rivkah, “Tell her, ‘No stones’.” Jorah, a sister of Jesus, secretly plans to get revenge on Rivkah. Through the story of the stones and the sacrifice of a Roman official, each character’s life is forever impacted by the amazing mercy of God.

Tracy Groot is the critically acclaimed and Christy Award–winning author of several works of historical fiction. Her books have received starred Booklist and Publishers Weekly reviews and have been called “beautifully written” and “page-turning” by Publishers Weekly, and “gripping” with “exquisitely drawn” characters by Library Journal.

Tracy and her husband have three grown sons and a daughter-in-law and enjoy board games, warm vacations, any kind of travel, Detroit Lions football, foodie experiences, and most anything that gives them time together.

 

Top 10 Tuesday — Single Word Titles

3 Mar

Book titles are very important in attracting a potential reader’s interest. Catchy, funny, and punny titles often catch my eye. But there is something about those one word titles — succinct, decisive, powerful. My list consists of the last 10 books I read with one word titles (just one word; no defining articles). They cover a variety of genres — mystery, historical, suspense, speculative, romance — something for everyone!

For more Top 10 Tuesday fun, make sure to head over to That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

 

Top 10 One Word Titles

 

Convergence by Ginny Yttrup (suspense)

Keturah by Lisa T. Bergren (historical romance)

Miriam by Mesu Andrews (Biblical)

Prophet by R J Larson (fantasy)

Reign by Ginger Garrett (Biblical)

Sabotaged by Dani Pettrey (romantic suspense)

Silenced by Dani Pettrey (romantic suspense)

Stratagem by Robin Caroll (suspense)

Synapse by Steven James (speculative)

Undercut by Heather Day Gilbert (mystery)

First Line Friday — Daughter of Rome

7 Feb

Happy Friday! Today I am featuring Daughter of Rome by Tessa Afshar, Biblical fiction that explores the life of Priscilla, a disciple who lived in the 1st century. Tessa has taken the scant account of her life and ministry and created a beautiful novel that is relevant to today’s readers. In addition, I have a copy of Daughter of Rome to give away! Just click HERE to enter.

 

For more fabulous first lines be sure to check out Hoarding Books.

 

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

Tessa Afshar is the award-winning author of many biblical and inspirational historical fiction books, including Harvest of Gold which won a Christy Award and In the Field of Grace, a biblical fiction on the life of Ruth. Born in the Middle East, Tessa spent her teen years in England and later moved to the United States. Her conversion to Christianity in her twenties changed the course of her life. She holds a Master of Divinity from Yale, where she was co-chair of the Evangelical Fellowship. She served in women and prayer ministry for twenty years before becoming a full-time writer and speaker. Contact Tessa at tessaafshar.com.

 

Book Review + Giveaway! — Daughter of Rome

5 Feb

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

Tessa Afshar is the award-winning author of many biblical and inspirational historical fiction books, including Harvest of Gold which won a Christy Award and In the Field of Grace, a biblical fiction on the life of Ruth. Born in the Middle East, Tessa spent her teen years in England and later moved to the United States. Her conversion to Christianity in her twenties changed the course of her life. She holds a Master of Divinity from Yale, where she was co-chair of the Evangelical Fellowship. She served in women and prayer ministry for twenty years before becoming a full-time writer and speaker. Contact Tessa at tessaafshar.com.

 

My Impressions:

Biblical fiction is a tricky genre — a writer has to balance the scriptural record with the what-ifs of story. Tessa Afshar is one of the best at it, and her newest novel, Daughter of Rome is a great example of why. Set during the days of the early church, this book brought to life a woman who is mentioned several times in the Book of Acts as well as other NT books. Afshar takes the barest of details and weaves a credible and intriguing account of Priscilla and the era in which she lived. If you are a fan of this genre, then Daughter of Rome is a must-read!

With meticulous research, Afshar creates a backstory for Priscilla. Born in Rome, daughter of an acclaimed general, yet on the outside of society, Priscilla is wooed by God. The fictional account of a first century Priscilla will resonate with modern women. Daughter of Rome is a love story between a man and a woman, but more a love story between a woman and her God. Of course, Aquila (always mentioned with Priscilla in the Biblical accounts) plays a large part in the book, but it is really Priscilla and her struggles and victories that take center stage. Afshar has included historical figures in her book, namely Paul, that give it authenticity and believability. The depiction of the day to day of the characters emphasizes their ordinariness — it is really an extraordinary God who transforms their lives. Priscilla faithfully lives a hidden life, a quiet life of sacrifice which proves a great example and motivator for today’s believers. As I read this book, I pondered how much impact today’s church could have if we followed the example of 1st century believers.

Daughter of Rome with its many themes and topics — Jew and Gentile, law and grace, power of prayer, belief in the miraculous — is perfect for book club discussions. In fact, I have chosen this book for a Bible study/book club that I lead. I look forward to a great conversation. So grab this book (and perhaps a few reading friends) and dig in — I think you will love it!

Highly Recommended.

Audience: Adults.

(Thanks to NetGalley for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

Giveaway!

Tessa is generously giving away one copy of Daughter of Rome to one of my readers. Squee! Just leave a comment on why you love Biblical fiction to be entered. I will randomly select a winner on February 20. (US residents only.)

 

 

Happy Release Day! Daughter of Rome by Tessa Afshar

4 Feb

 

Happy release day to Tessa Afshar! Her newest Biblical novel, Daughter of Rome is available today! I have already read this book, and can promise you will love it. (My review will post tomorrow.) I am especially looking forward to sharing it with my Faith And Fiction Bible Study as we look at the Early Church. I found the day to day life of Priscilla and Aquila fascinating, and their interactions with believers and non-believers brought the whole era to life. Besides Priscilla and Aquila, you will meet Paul — he is a fantastic character as Tessa imagines him.

If you are a fan of this genre, make sure to put it at the top of your TBR pile!

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

Tessa Afshar is the award-winning author of many biblical and inspirational historical fiction books, including Harvest of Gold which won a Christy Award and In the Field of Grace, a biblical fiction on the life of Ruth. Born in the Middle East, Tessa spent her teen years in England and later moved to the United States. Her conversion to Christianity in her twenties changed the course of her life. She holds a Master of Divinity from Yale, where she was co-chair of the Evangelical Fellowship. She served in women and prayer ministry for twenty years before becoming a full-time writer and speaker. Contact Tessa at tessaafshar.com.

 

 

February Book Club Picks

1 Feb

I wanted to share the books my book clubs are reading this month.

By The Book loved Crisis Shot by Janice Cantore so much that we could hardly wait to read the next book in the Line of Duty series. We look forward to a great reading experience with suspense novel, Lethal Target. You can join in the fun with our online book club HERE.

My Faith And Fiction Bible Study resumes this month with a look at the early Church as described in the Book of Acts and other NT books. We will also focus on women’s roles, so the novel Daughter of Rome by Tessa Afshar is a great choice. I have already read this book which releases on 2/4/20. Look for my review next week. For our FB page, click HERE.

Hope you can join in on one of our discussions!

 

Police Chief Tess O’Rourke thought she’d taken care of her small town’s drug problem last year. But now Rogue’s Hollow residents are up in arms over a contentious vote on legalizing the sale of marijuana within city limits. And when an eighteen-year-old is found dead of a possible overdose, Tess wonders if the local pot farms might be involved and begins to fear that a new, deadlier drug supply chain has cropped up. As tempers flare and emotions boil over, Tess faces the possibility of losing the town’s support.

With her relationship to Sergeant Steve Logan on shaky ground, Tess could really use a friend, and she feels drawn to Pastor Oliver Macpherson’s quiet presence. But the anger she holds over her father’s death prevents her from embracing his faith and finding peace.

Battling storms within and without, Tess is shocked when a familiar face from her past shows up in town to stir up more trouble. And his threats against Tess may prove lethal.

 

A former Long Beach, California, police officer of twenty-two years, Janice Cantore worked a variety of assignments, including patrol, administration, juvenile investigations, and training. She’s always enjoyed writing and published two short articles on faith at work for Cop and Christ and Today’s Christian Woman before tackling novels. She now lives in a small town in southern Oregon, where she enjoys exploring the forests, rivers, and lakes with her Labrador retrievers, Abbie and Tilly.

Visit Janice’s website at http://www.janicecantore.com and connect with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/JaniceCantore.

 

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

Tessa Afshar is the award-winning author of many biblical and inspirational historical fiction books, including Harvest of Gold which won a Christy Award and In the Field of Grace, a biblical fiction on the life of Ruth. Born in the Middle East, Tessa spent her teen years in England and later moved to the United States. Her conversion to Christianity in her twenties changed the course of her life. She holds a Master of Divinity from Yale, where she was co-chair of the Evangelical Fellowship. She served in women and prayer ministry for twenty years before becoming a full-time writer and speaker. Contact Tessa at tessaafshar.com.

 

First Line Friday — Love in A Broken Vessel

31 Jan

Welcome to First Line Friday! This year I am sharing books that have been on my shelves for a long time. Today I am featuring Love in A Broken Vessel by Mesu Andrews. The cover is gorgeous and the story of love, betrayal, and redemption is soul-satisfying. I really need to read this book!

Have you read Love in A Broken Vessel?

Why should I move it to the top of the TBR pile?

For more great first lines, head over to Hoarding Books.

 

Hosea has been charged by God with a difficult task —  marry a prostitute in order to show God’s people the nature and depth of his love for Israel. When Hosea goes to Israel to proclaim God’s message, the prostitute God tells him to marry turns out to be his childhood friend Gomer. He finds her broken and abused, unwilling to trust Hosea or his God. But when marrying Hosea becomes her only choice, Gomer does what she’s good at — she survives. Can Hosea’s love for God and God’s love for Israel heal Gomer’s broken spirit?

With her potent combination of in-depth research and masterful storytelling, Mesu Andrews brings to life a complex and fascinating biblical story of the power of love and forgiveness in the face of utter betrayal.

Mesu Andrews and her husband Roy have raised two daughters and now enjoy a tribe of grandkids. Mesu’s love for God’s Word has never waned. She now writes biblical novels, rich with spiritual insight learned through fascinating discoveries in deep historical research.

Mesu writes in their log cabin tucked away in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains. Her best friend is an American Staffordshire Terrier named Zeke, who keeps her company on long writing days. Zeke also enjoys watching movies, long walks in the woods, and sitting by the fireplace on rainy days.