Tag Archives: Mesu Andrews

Top 10 Tuesday — Book Quotes

30 Apr

This week Top Ten Tuesday is challenging bloggers to list their 10 favorite book quotes. Because first lines are very important in grabbing a reader’s interest (and because it has been very busy around here 😉 ), I am sharing some favorite first lines that made their debut in my First Line Friday posts. Hopefully, they will pique your interest (perhaps again) and spur you to pick up a new book.

For more great book quotes (and certainly more creative posts), visit That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

Top 10 Fabulous First Lines

 

What’s your favorite book quote?

First Line Friday — Of Fire And Lions

19 Apr

On this Good Friday I am sharing the first line of Mesu Andrews’ latest Biblical novel, Of Fire And Lions. I am looking forward to reading this imaginative look at the life of Daniel. It may be a departure from what you’ve always heard about Daniel, but Andrews always provides a thoughtful perspective on the life and times of God’s people. Have you read this book yet? I’d love to know what you thought.

 

In the meantime, leave a comment with your first line and then head over to Hoarding Books for more fabulous first lines!

 

 

Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she’d perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar’s court. Now, as Daniel’s wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she’s safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear — until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar’s palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili’s tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone?

Ultimately, Yahweh’s sovereign hand guides Jerusalem’s captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.

To purchase, click HERE.

Mesu Andrews grew up with a variegated Christian heritage. With grandparents from the Pilgrim Holiness, Nazarene, and Wesleyan Churches, her dad was a Quaker and mom charismatic. As you might imagine, God was a central figure in most family discussions, but theology was a battlefield and Scripture the weapon. As a rebellious teenager, Mesu rejected God and His Word, but discovered Jesus as a life-transforming Savior through the changed life of an old friend.

The desire for God’s Word exploded with her new commitment, but devotional time was scarce due to the demands of a young wife and mother. So Mesu scoured the only two theology books available–children’s Bible stories and her Bible. The stories she read to her daughters at night pointed her to the Bible passages she studied all day. She became an avid student of God’s Word, searching historical and cultural settings as well as ancient texts and original languages.

Mesu and her husband Roy have raised those two daughters and now enjoy a tribe of grandkids, who get to hear those same Bible stories. 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.

Top 10 Tuesday — I Would Do Anything For Books . . .

9 Apr

With Meatloaf playing in my head, I pondered just what to write about for this week’s Top 10 Tuesday prompt — outrageous or uncharacteristic things I’ve done to get books. I live a rather predictable, unexciting life. I am not a risk taker or someone who embraces challenges (just ask my family). But when it comes to books . . . . 😉  Although I have never camped out all night to buy a new release, I’ve never stalked an author (at least by the current legal definition), and I have never done anything remotely illegal to obtain a book, I have done several things that are waaay out of my comfort zone. Today’s post follows the progression of my book-obsessed ways.

To discover what other bloggers have done to get that book, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

Top Ways to Get That Book!

 

I became a blogger. I’d like to say I was all altruistic in my quest to obtain books for my church library. Like, I sacrificed to write a blog to update our collection. Yeah right! While I did add mightily to the library’s shelves during my brief tenure as library lady, let’s not forget that I got to read all those books first!

I crashed attended book conferences and galas. This one was definitely waay out of my comfort zone. Going to a new place populated with authors? I was a timid, shrinking mess. But the lure of not only meeting, but talking to my favorite authors and then getting their books signed was over-powering.

I judged for the Inspy Awards. Now with this one I really did feel like a fraud. 😉 I got to pretend I knew what I was doing when critiquing the merits of finalists. This was one of the most rewarding things I have ever done (and not just in terms of books). I got to meet fabulous bloggers who have lots more insight and smarts when it comes to books. I judged four years and loved every minute of it. If you have a blog, I highly encourage you to apply to be a part of this fantastic group. (Applications for judging this year are closed, but check back for 2020.)

I finally got to attend the Christian Fiction Readers Retreat. Woo hoo! Because this year’s event was held so close to my son and DIL’s home, I could finally attend this fabulous event. What a wonderful day of books, authors, readers, bloggers, and bookish shenanigans. I scored lots of books too! Although I didn’t win any of the prizes *sniff, sniff*, my goody bag was filled to the brim with goodies! There was also a book store (enough said)!

 

What would you do to get that book?

Book Spotlight — Of Fire And Lions

8 Apr

For Biblical fiction, you just can’t beat Mesu Andrews. Her novels don’t only entertain, but make you dig deeper into the scripture. Reading her books always makes me go back to check the main source, and I always discover nuggets of truth that I hadn’t seen before. I was excited to receive her newest novel, Of Fire And Lions. Set during the Babylonian captivity, this one is told from the perspective of Daniel’s wife. Did Daniel have a wife? That’s just one of the questions Mesu explores. A bonus to this book is a 7-part accompanying Bible study. You really need to check this one out!

Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she’d perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar’s court. Now, as Daniel’s wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she’s safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear — until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar’s palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili’s tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone?

Ultimately, Yahweh’s sovereign hand guides Jerusalem’s captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.

To purchase, click HERE.

 

Mesu Andrews grew up with a variegated Christian heritage. With grandparents from the Pilgrim Holiness, Nazarene, and Wesleyan Churches, her dad was a Quaker and mom charismatic. As you might imagine, God was a central figure in most family discussions, but theology was a battlefield and Scripture the weapon. As a rebellious teenager, Mesu rejected God and His Word, but discovered Jesus as a life-transforming Savior through the changed life of an old friend.

The desire for God’s Word exploded with her new commitment, but devotional time was scarce due to the demands of a young wife and mother. So Mesu scoured the only two theology books available–children’s Bible stories and her Bible. The stories she read to her daughters at night pointed her to the Bible passages she studied all day. She became an avid student of God’s Word, searching historical and cultural settings as well as ancient texts and original languages.

Mesu and her husband Roy have raised those two daughters and now enjoy a tribe of grandkids, who get to hear those same Bible stories. 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.

Book Review: Miriam

15 Mar

The Hebrews call me prophetess, the Egyptians a seer.
But I am neither. I am simply a watcher of Israel
and the messenger of El Shaddai.
When He speaks to me in dreams, I interpret. When He whispers a melody, I sing.

At eighty-six, Miriam had devoted her entire life to loving El Shaddai and serving His people as both midwife and messenger. Yet when her brother Moses returns to Egypt from exile, he brings a disruptive message. God has a new name – Yahweh – and has declared a radical deliverance for the Israelites.
 
 Miriam and her beloved family face an impossible choice: cling to familiar bondage or embrace uncharted freedom at an unimaginable cost. Even if the Hebrews survive the plagues set to turn the Nile to blood and unleash a maelstrom of frogs and locusts, can they weather the resulting fury of the Pharaoh?
 
Enter an exotic land where a cruel Pharaoh reigns, pagan priests wield black arts, and the Israelites cry out to a God they only think they know.

Mesu Andrews grew up with a variegated Christian heritage. With grandparents from the Pilgrim Holiness, Nazarene, and Wesleyan Churches, her dad was a Quaker and mom charismatic. As you might imagine, God was a central figure in most family discussions, but theology was a battlefield and Scripture the weapon. As a rebellious teenager, Mesu rejected God and His Word, but discovered Jesus as a life-transforming Savior through the changed life of an old friend.

The desire for God’s Word exploded with her new commitment, but devotional time was scarce due to the demands of a young wife and mother. So Mesu scoured the only two theology books available — children’s Bible stories and her Bible. The stories she read to her daughters at night pointed her to the Bible passages she studied all day. She became an avid student of God’s Word, searching historical and cultural settings as well as ancient texts and original languages.

Mesu and her husband Roy have raised those two daughters and now enjoy a tribe of grandkids, who get to hear those same Bible stories. 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.

Her first novel, Love Amid the Ashes (Revell) — the story of Job and the women who loved him — won the 2012 ECPA Book of the Year in the Debut Author Category. Her subsequent novels have released with high praise, shedding light on some of the shadowy women of Scripture. Love’s Sacred Song (Revell, 2012) tells the story of the beloved shepherdess in King Solomon’s Song of Solomon. Love in a Broken Vessel (Revell, 2013) tells the story of Hosea and Gomer and is the final stand-alone novel in the Treasures of His Love Series. Her fourth novel, In the Shadow of Jezebel (Revell, 2014) tells the fascinating story of Queen Athaliah and the courageous Princess Jehosheba.

The Treasures of the Nile series (Waterbrook/Multnomah, 2015-16) included The Pharaoh’s Daughter and Miriam and spanned Moses’ life from birth to the Exodus. Her 2017 release, Isaiah’s Daughter (Waterbrook/Multnomah), explores the life and ministry of the prophet Isaiah and the tumultuous days of Judah under the reigns of Ahaz and Hezekiah but focuses on the woman Hephzibah — a fascinating character in Jewish legends.

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.

 

My Impressions:

I chose Miriam by Mesu Andrews as a complimentary resource for my Bible study group, Faith And Fiction. A fictionalized account of a particular Bible story or figure is a great way to see the cultural context and to foster a more in-depth reading of scripture.  My group looked at all three accounts of Miriam in the Bible — her childhood encounter with Pharaoh’s daughter, her song of deliverance following the crossing of the Red Sea, and her grumbling against Moses’ leadership. The novel Miriam covers less than Biblical narrative — the time of Moses’ return to Egypt following 40 years of self-imposed exile, the plagues imposed by God on the Egyptians, and the deliverance of the Hebrew nation from the Egyptians. It was an interesting what-if that made our group think about what life was really like for the enslaved Hebrews and the impact the plagues had on their lives. Also included in the book are the interactions between Miriam, Aaron, and Moses. Andrews sets the stage of Miriam’s jealousy documented in the book of Numbers. There are also a number of characters, some mentioned in scripture and others purely fictional, that add color and depth to the narrative. While the book is not my favorite from Andrews, it does have wonderful spiritual messages which resonated with me — the urgency of telling people about God, the need to trust even when we don’t understand, and the powerful work of God through His people and nature.

I had a slow start with Miriam, but as the story unfolded (especially during the plagues) I became much more engaged. It definitely is an intriguing look at a well-known Bible story that will make you look at scripture a little closer.

Recommended for fans of Biblical fiction.

Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE.

(I purchased Miriam from Amazon. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

February Book Club Picks!

1 Feb

I am excited about my book clubs’ selections this month. By The Book is reading favorite author Eva Marie Everson‘s Five Brides, a book perfect for our Valentine’s Day meeting. (And for those who think Valentine’s Day is all wrong for a book club to meet,  we are inviting our spouses/special someone for a dinner before we kick them out and discuss the book! LOL!) Page Turners will join my Faith And Fiction Bible Study in a discussion of Miriam by Mesu Andrews. I am looking forward to discovering more about Moses’ sister and what God has to share with us.

Have you read either one of these books? What did you think?

Five Brides by Eva Marie Everson

One dress, five women, a lifetime of memories.

Five single, fiercely independent women live together in a Chicago apartment in the early 1950s but rarely see one another. One Saturday afternoon, as they are serendipitously together downtown, they spy a wedding dress in a storefront window at the famous Carson, Pirie, Scott & Co. After trying it on—much to the dismay of the salesclerk and without a single boyfriend or date between the five of them—they decide to pool their money to purchase it. Can one dress forever connect five women who live together only a short time before taking their own journeys to love and whatever comes happily ever after?

Miriam: A Treasures of The Nile Novel by Mesu Andrews

The Hebrews call me prophetess, the Egyptians a seer.
But I am neither. I am simply a watcher of Israel
and the messenger of El Shaddai.
When He speaks to me in dreams, I interpret. When He whispers a melody, I sing.

At eighty-six, Miriam had devoted her entire life to loving El Shaddai and serving His people as both midwife and messenger. Yet when her brother Moses returns to Egypt from exile, he brings a disruptive message. God has a new name – Yahweh – and has declared a radical deliverance for the Israelites.
 
 Miriam and her beloved family face an impossible choice: cling to familiar bondage or embrace uncharted freedom at an unimaginable cost. Even if the Hebrews survive the plagues set to turn the Nile to blood and unleash a maelstrom of frogs and locusts, can they weather the resulting fury of the Pharaoh?
 
Enter an exotic land where a cruel Pharaoh reigns, pagan priests wield black arts, and the Israelites cry out to a God they only think they know.

Top 10 Tuesday — Books I Had All Intentions of Reading in 2018. Epic Fail!

22 Jan

I have the best intentions when it comes to reading. But alas my eyes are larger than my time constraints. So some really good books are left unread. Determined to read from books I got last year, I did whittle the list down by 2 this month. A weak start, but I will take it. The books on my list are in my possession and desperately need reading. Maybe I will be more successful in 2019. What about you? Did your pile grow much in 2018?

Find out other bloggers’ failed attempts at reading their TBR piles at That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Books I Didn’t Read in 2018

 

All That Glitters by Les Cowan

Cold, Cold Heart by Christine Poulson

Death Beat by Fiona Veitch Smith

Death of A Jester by Deb Richardson-Moore

Isaiah’s Daughter by Mesu Andrews

Justice Betrayed by Patricia Bradley

The Lady of Tarpon Springs by Judith Miller

 

Lethal Target by Janice Cantore

Local Artist by Paul Trembling

Minding The Light by Suzanne Woods Fisher

 

Which book would you read first?