Skip to main content
PBS logo

Search - The Red Tent

The Red Tent
The Red Tent
Author: Anita Diamant
Her name is Dinah. In the Bible, her life is only hinted at in a brief and violent detour within the more familiar chapters of the Book of Genesis that are about her father, Jacob, and his dozen sons. — Told in Dinah's voice, this novel reveals the traditions and turmoils of ancient womanhood-the world of the red tent. It begins with the stor...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780312169787
ISBN-10: 0312169787
Publication Date: 9/15/1997
Pages: 336
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.

4.1 stars, based on 87 ratings
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Members Wishing: 0
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

Leigh avatar reviewed The Red Tent on + 378 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 34
Diamant takes a minor character from the Bible and spins off into an illustrious story of unexpected and misinterpreted passion. In addition to following Dinah's journey through womanhood and beyond, the reader gets acquainted with other, more familiar biblical characters, who jump into life with their own personalities and problems.

It will be difficult for me to separate the Bible story of Rachel and Leah now from this story because of Diamant's vivid writing and the way she made the characters come to life. This is one of the few books that made me cry.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 34
This is probably my favorite book. I am not a religous person by any means, but as a young woman... this book moved me on a whole other level. Its beautiful, thoughful, human, and real. LOVE IT.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 22 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 32
definitely inthe top three of all time for me. So incredibly well told, and a great balance to the male dominated stories of the bible. Don't we always wonder what the other half was thinking? If you loved this one, try The Twentieth Wife and The Feast of Roses--they are about Indian history and telling the female side.
cosmichomicide avatar reviewed The Red Tent on + 134 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 23
Normally I do not particularly like either "wimmen's books" or biblical themes, but I found myself pleasantly surprised by this one. In many ways, I think it would have been a stronger book without drawing on the specific biblical characters as the historical context and storytelling aspects of the book were almost diminished by the familiarity of the tale. Still, the characters were beautifully drawn, the book well written, the setting falls from the page and surrounds the reader. Recommended.
obsidianfire avatar reviewed The Red Tent on + 133 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 20
One of the best books I'v read in a long time. It made me cry both tears of sadness and tears of happiness. No other book I've read has been able to do that. The rituals that took place in regards to the red tent were beautiful. What a way to worship and love bieng a woman. And the story of Dinah was wonderful.
Read All 527 Book Reviews of "The Red Tent"

Please Log in to Rate these Book Reviews

mrslorikay avatar reviewed The Red Tent on + 2 more book reviews
I have to say this is one of the best books I have ever read. I've read it twice now and I am getting ready to read it again. There is something compelling about this story. The second time through was even better than the first and I can't wait for the third. Reading this made me go look up Dinah's story in the bible and I enjoyed that just about as much!
reviewed The Red Tent on
This was a great book. I could hardly put it down.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 5 more book reviews
This is a great story taken from the bible story of Jacob but from the women's point of view. Historical stories that we read from the man's point of view who wrote, and lived them, are great - but when those same stories are written from a woman's perspective, it is always so interesting. Ms. Diamante's version of this historical account gives such insight as to the harships women endured everyday, is wonderfully written, and the reader finds it very easy to believe the history, from the women's point of view, could very well be how it truly did happen.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 367 more book reviews
The red tent is the place where women gathered during their cycles of birthing, menses, and even illness. Like the conversations and mysteries held within this feminine tent, this sweeping piece of fiction offers an insider's look at the daily life of a biblical sorority of mothers and wives and their one and only daughter, Dinah. Told in the voice of Jacob's daughter Dinah (who only received a glimpse of recognition in the Book of Genesis), we are privy to the fascinating feminine characters who bled within the red tent. In a confiding and poetic voice, Dinah whispers stories of her four mothers, Rachel, Leah, Zilpah, and Bilhah--all wives to Jacob, and each one embodying unique feminine traits. As she reveals these sensual and emotionally charged stories we learn of birthing miracles, slaves, artisans, household gods, and sisterhood secrets. Eventually Dinah delves into her own saga of betrayals, grief, and a call to midwifery.
ATraveler avatar reviewed The Red Tent on + 193 more book reviews
I found this an interesting read. It takes the biblical characters and, with literary lience, weaves an interesting view of life during the begining of the formation of the Jews culture. The previous gods (religions) are not abandoned as would be logical in a developing society. The seperation/differences of men and women create the drama in this story. I was pleased with how it was wrapped up.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 136 more book reviews
Way too many people to keep track of, had me very confused.
reviewed The Red Tent on + 132 more book reviews
Could not get into this book. I know some people loved it. I'd rather pass it along than have it on my book shelf.Others will enjoy it.

Book Wiki

Dinah (Primary Character)
Leah (Major Character)
Jacob (Average Character)
Rachel, second wife of Jacob (Average Character)
Zilpah (Average Character)
Real Places