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Topic: Any fans of Biblical era Historical fiction?

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Subject: Any fans of Biblical era Historical fiction?
Date Posted: 8/1/2008 3:20 AM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,502
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This seems to be my time period lately.  Any other fans?  I've recently read Mary Called Magdalene by Margaret George, Sarah: Book 1 of the Canaan Trilogy by Marek Halter, and I'm working on the Gilded Chamber: a Novel of Queen Ester by Rebecca Kohn.  I've also read the Red Tent by Anita Diamant and Sarah by Orson Scott Card (I found Marek Halter's version more accessible.

Do you read Biblical era HF?  If so, what books have you enjoyed?



Last Edited on: 8/1/08 3:23 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/1/2008 6:24 AM ET
Member Since: 7/21/2008
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I just ordered Mary Called Magedelane and the Red Tent...I haven't read Biblical historical fiction before but am looking for to both these books.

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 6:48 AM ET
Member Since: 6/2/2005
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I read all the books you mentioned and the rest of the series by Card and Halter. The Red Tent was my favorite by far. My Mom has my copy of Mary of Nazareth by Marek Halter and she says she likes it. I haven't read it yet.

I also read Christ the Lord by Anne Rice, Pilate's Wife by Antoinette May, and The Queenmaker by India Edghill. This seems to be a very popular genre and there are many books out there to choose from. Have fun!

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 10:16 AM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
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I love historical fiction with a strong religious history overtone....I've read both Mary, Called Magdalene and Red Tent, I liked them both...I can't recall any other biblical era set historical fiction that I've read....

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 10:22 AM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
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I've read all of the ones mentioned above, and enjoyed most of them. I wish Rebecca Kohn would write more! I also like the books by Eva Etzioni-Halevy. I've read The Garden of Ruth and The Song of Hannah, and really enjoyed both books. The newest is The Triumph of Deborah, but I haven't read it yet. It's on my TBR mountain.

Also on my TBR:

  • Crucified Under Pontius Pilate by George D. LeMaitre
  • The Books of Rachel by Joel Gross
  • The Queen of Sheba by Roberta Kells Dorr - She has written quite a few other books of Biblical fiction.
  • Two Women of Galilee by Mary Rourke
  • The Rock by Kanan Makiya - This one is more about a "place" in the Bible; the Dome of Jerusalem, but I'm really looking forward to reading it.
Date Posted: 8/1/2008 10:57 AM ET
Member Since: 3/23/2008
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The Red Tent is one of my favorite's and a book that I won't part with!

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 11:21 AM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
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Of all the Biblical fiction I've read, The Red Tent was definitely my favorite too. It is such a wonderful book!

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 12:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2008
Posts: 1,976
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I think biblical history is facinating and thought I would really enjoy this genre, but so far I've been mostly disappointed. I've read The Red Tent, Sarah (the one by Marek Halter) and Christ the Lord Out of Egypt.  Although I enjoyed the first half of The Red Tent, I hated the 2nd half.  I did not like the direction the author took with Sarah and I doubt that I will ever read another of his novels.  I did like Christ the Lord and I'm looking forward to her next book.  On my TBR list is The Garden of Ruth and Mary Called Magdalene by Margaret George, but right now i'm still stuck in the 16th century with the Tudors.

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 5:12 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
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The Red Tent was amazing.  I think I liked it because it took you inside a world that is really not mentioned much in the Bible.  You really get a sense for what it was like to be born female at that time.

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 9:19 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2007
Posts: 1,892
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I haven't read any yet but I'm planning to in the near future.  I've got Mary of Nazareth on my WL and The Red Tent on my TBR pile.

Date Posted: 8/2/2008 1:43 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2005
Posts: 456
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Rebecca Kohn also wrote Seven Days to the Sea -- the story of the Exodus by the women in Moses' life (his sister, Miriam, and wife, Tzipporah).  I enjoyed it, but not nearly as much as I enjoyed The Gilded Chamber, but then I'm a huge fan of the Esther story.  :)

One of my friends raves about India Eghill's books - Queenmaker is the first, I believe.  I haven't read them though.

I've decided Tzipporah is the coolest name and think I'll name my next dog/cat that -- if they're not already named. :)

Date Posted: 8/2/2008 9:23 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,502
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I've got the Queen Maker in my TBR.  I'm looking foward to it.  Seven Days at Sea sounds fascinating, too!

Marci--Marek Halter also has a book, Zipporah (I'm sure the same character)

Date Posted: 8/3/2008 11:25 AM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2006
Posts: 1,069
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Taylor Caldwell  who wrote CAPTAINS AND THE KINGS also wrote biblical novels that were very good. Some I remember are:

GREAT LION OF GOD (about Paul)

DEAR AND GLORIOUS PHYSICIAN ( about Luke)

I, JUDAS

and I also recommend THE EGYPTIAN. (don't know the correct spelling of the author. I think it was Mika Waltari. )

Date Posted: 8/3/2008 3:55 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2006
Posts: 28,502
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I finished The Gilded Chamber this morning and it was really good.  I wasn't all tha familiar with the story.  I thought it was well written.

(It's on my bookshelf if anyone is intereste--only 2 copies in the system)

Date Posted: 8/3/2008 10:25 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2005
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I have read a lot of the books mentioned and have liked most of them. I don't really go out looking for biblical hf but I usually enjoy the ones I stumble across.

Date Posted: 8/5/2008 2:11 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2008
Posts: 1,755
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I just ordered Mary Called Magedelane and the Red Tent...I haven't read Biblical historical fiction before but am looking for to both these books.

LOL, Michelle, this is me exactly, except I ordered Mary Called Magdalene a long time ago. I have both books sitting on my TBR pile, and I hope sometime soon we get a Biblical fiction theme for our HF BOM!



Last Edited on: 8/5/08 2:11 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/5/2008 10:34 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2008
Posts: 1,976
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Has anybody heard of Eve: A Novel of the First Woman?  It's coming out in January 09.  I definitely want to read this one.

Date Posted: 8/5/2008 11:12 PM ET
Member Since: 9/16/2007
Posts: 998
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Mel, if you liked Sarah read the rest of the Canaan Trilogy.  It's been a while, but as I recall I thought that was the weakest book of the series; and Zipporah was the best.  Also, his The Book of Abraham is great, though I didn't care for The Children of Abraham.

I can't wait to read Gilded Chamber!

Date Posted: 8/6/2008 1:56 PM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2005
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Glad you liked The Gilded Chamber, Melody, but I'm totally mystified as to how you didn't know the story of Esther.  I thought *EVERYONE* knew that story.   

Jeanne - thanks for the tidbits on Halter's Caanan Trilogy (which Mel also mentioned) - when I get Mt Bookmore down to a reasonable height, I'll most likely seek to get those from the library.

Date Posted: 8/6/2008 6:18 PM ET
Member Since: 9/16/2007
Posts: 998
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Marci, are you being sarcastic about everyone knowing the story of Esther??  I know most Jews know it, because there's a holiday that centers around it.  But is it in the Christian bible?

Date Posted: 8/6/2008 7:03 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2007
Posts: 1,892
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I personally have no idea about the story of Esther or whether it is in the Christian Bible because (gasp!)  I've never read past Genesis.   I think any biblical era historical fiction would be enlightening to me because I know next to nothing save the basics in this area. 

Date Posted: 8/16/2008 4:10 PM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
Posts: 3,823
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I just saw that India Edghill has a new one coming out in 2009 about Samson and Delilah. This should be a good one!

Here's the link - http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/details/9780312338916-Samson+and+Delilah+A+Novel



Last Edited on: 8/16/08 4:11 PM ET - Total times edited: 1