Monday, November 9, 2015

Quick Review: "Esther" by Rebecca Kanner

From Goodreads:  A glittering Persian king has a vast empire that reaches farther than where the sun meets the horizon. He is bathed in riches and commands a frightening military force. He possesses power beyond any other mortal man and rules his kingdom as a god. Anything he desires, he has. Any woman he wants, he possesses. Thousands of them. Young virgins from all across his many lands.

A Jewish girl is ripped from her hut by the king’s brutish warriors and forced to march across blistering, scorched earth to the capitol city. Trapped for months in the splendid cage of the king’s palace, she must avoid the ire of the king’s concubines and eunuchs all while preparing for her one night with the king. Soon the fated night arrives, and she does everything in her power to captivate the king and become his queen.

But wearing the crown brings with it a new set of dangers. When a ruthless man plies the king’s ear with whispers of genocide, it is up to the young queen to prevent the extermination of the Jews. She must find the strength within to violate the king’s law, risk her life, and save her people.

This is a story of finding hidden depths of courage within one’s self. Of risking it all to stand up for what is right.

This is the story of Queen Esther.

My Thoughts:  I've been fascinated by Queen Esther ever since I first read about her in the Bible as a child.  This book tells the story of Esther from her capture throughout her life as queen.  Ms. Kanner's Esther is a fighter who is determined to survive against all odds.  Because of this determination as well as her intelligence, she is able to catch the eye of the king who makes her his queen almost immediately.  

I loved Ms. Kanner's description of life inside Xerxes' palace.  Her descriptions are magnificent; I just imagined a world where everything glittered.  I would also say that she writes some pretty good villains.  Haman and his family were vile, nasty and cruel; the lengths they went to in order to curry favor and gain power were horrible.  However, I liked that Esther was able to outsmart them without resorting to the kinds of dark deeds Haman and his brood utilized.

I will say that this story made me kind of sad.  Esther was in love with someone who she could never be with and it was painful to watch her and Erez grapple with their feelings and the circumstances that kept them apart.  There were also other areas where her life didn't work out the way she planned and it was incredibly heart-breaking (I don't want to give anything away).  

Overall, this was an enjoyable look at the life of an amazing biblical figure.  3 stars.

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like an interesting fictionalization of Esther's story. I've often thought it might be sad to be just one of a King's women. Not much true family in that arrangement. Thanks for sharing.


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