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Saturday, December 29, 2012

My review of Harvest of Rubies by Tessa Afshar

About the book:

The prophet Nehemiah's cousin can speak numerous languages, keep complex accounts, write on rolls of parchment and tablets of clay, and solve great mysteries. There is only one problem: she is a woman.

In her early childhood years, Sarah experienced the death of her mother and her father's subsequent emotional distance and she came to two conclusions: that God does not care about her, and that her accomplishments are the measure of her worth - the measure of her self.

Sarah, the talented scribe and cousin to Nehemiah, is catapulted into the center of the Persian court, working too many hours, rubbing elbows with royalty, and solving intrigues for the Queen. Ironically, it isn't failure but success that causes Sarah to lose her only source of external validation.

Sarah soon learns that she has something of worth to offer beyond her ability with languages and sums - her very being proves to be a blessing to others.

My review:

This was such a spiritually moving book. Plus, I enjoyed the deep love story developing between the husband and wife. In fact, I enjoyed everything about this story. I loved how the author took what is common to mankind and made it relevant to a spiritual journey today. It really made me think about things in my life. Plus, it was very well written and I became lost in the story. Since a lot of books seem to lose my attention lately, this story was especially delightful because I wanted to keep reading it.

The heroine was a people-pleaser from childhood following the death of her mother; at least, she was that way at first. I could see how Sarah really believed she had to do important things to be loved. I appreciated how the author brought that full circle and how Sarah learned that she was loved for who she was, not what she did. The illustration from the pruning of the grapevine was poignant as well. I could see a spiritual harvest of rubies in her life, so the title was perfect. Had she received less pruning from the Lord, her life may not have blossomed into a beautiful thing to behold by book's end. Great story for lovers of Biblical fiction. I highly recommend it.

Harvest of Rubies was published by Moody (River North) and released in April 2012. 

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