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Saturday, September 03, 2011

My review of Desired: The Untold Story of Samson and Delilah (Lost Loves of the Bible) by Ginger Garrett

Desired: The Untold Story of Samson and Delilah (Lost Loves of the Bible)About the book:

Meet the legendary Samson as you've never known him before … through the eyes of the three women who loved him.

Before Samson was an Old Testament legend, he was a prodigal son, an inexperienced suitor, a vengeful husband, and a lost soul driven by his own weakness. This is his story as told by three strong women who loved him—the nagging, manipulative mother who pushed him toward greatness, the hapless Philistine bride whose betrayal propelled him into notoriety, and the emotionally damaged seductress—the famous Delilah—who engineered his downfall and propelled him to his destiny. Desired celebrates the God of Israel's to work powerfully in the midst of hopes, fears, desires, and sorrows.

My review: 

I loved the author's approach to this book. She makes characters that are traditionally misunderstood come to life. She also makes situations that are alluded to in the Scriptures but not necessarily spelled out very easy to relate to. I loved the female characters in this book and understood why they had hard hearts that led to decisions that they ultimately regretted. 

Women had so little power in the Philistine culture. So when an opportunity for these women to change their situations presented itself it was hard for them to say no. Love had betrayed Delilah and wounded her in the past, so it wasn't enough to keep her from hurting others. Understandable, even if it's not something we admire characters for. The author had to stay true to what happened in the Bible, so altering that aspect of the story wasn't an option. 

I wept for both Amara and Delilah (not literally, but my heart grieved when they deal with the consequences of their choices) which is a testimony to the author's ability to grab the reader's heart. Garrett did a great job making me empathize with their plights. It was never an excuse for what they did, but an explanation that made sense to me. I think this is Garrett's best book, bar none. The author did a great job of showing how Samson's strength was also his downfall. And his Jewish mother was excellently portrayed as well. I could sense his mother's disillusionment when things continually happened that she didn't understand and couldn't control. 

This is the first time the similarities between Samson (and the people looking to him for deliverance,) and Jesus were brought to light in my thoughts. God has a way of doing things much differently than people expect. This is shone through Samson's story, but his life also reflected the consequences of his poor choices just like in the story of David and Bathsheba. People who enjoy Biblical fiction and it's ability to bring Scriptural truths to light will appreciate this book.

Desired was published by David C. Cook and releases October 1, 2011

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