Ever wonder what it must have been like to live in Ancient Egypt in the time of Moses? I know have. So this book intrigued me even before I began reading it. After the holdays and during a cold Minnesota winter, I was hoping for a new spin on a familiar biblical story; one that would take me right into the time period and would pull me into the experience and relationships of the characters. This book, In the Shadow of Sinai , delivered just what I had hoped!
Belzalel is a Hebrew slave who is a talented artisian in the court of the Pharaoh. He walks between two worlds—the palace of Ramses II and his family who are Hebrew slaves. Belzalel is also a man with some major God issues. Like his people, he wants to believe in El Shaddai, but he is angry at God for giving a him a talent that makes him have a different life that keeps him from fully living in either world.
Through the course of this story, Belzalel befriends a young Egyptian boy who is also a slave, the captain of the guards and a young, beautiful woman who is a concubine in Pharaoh’s harem. Add in the familiar backdrop of the Exodus story of Moses, Aaron, and the plagues and you get just the kind of story I was hoping to read when I signed on for this review!
In her debut novel, Carole Towriss eloquently creates a fresh new story within the fimilar story of the Israelites’ Exodus from Egypt. In the Shadow of Sinai is the first of three books for the Journey to Canaan series from DeWard Publishing. Towriss has an engaging writing style that pulled me into the story and made me want to keep reading. Her characters are well developed, and she interweaves their lives in believable and informative ways that capture this period in history. Not only are the characters compelling, the story’s themes of redemption, hope, and faith will resonate in our era, in a world that could use more of all of these. Carole is an excellent storyteller who will have a following in this book and in books to come with this well-crafted novel.
When I finished a chapter, I found myself wondering more about the time period and thinking more about what it might be like to live back then. For example, she gives the chapter segments the names that went along with Egyptian calendar and growing season. Since this was such an agriculturally focused country at the time, this added further believability to her story. She also discussed aspects of palace life and the social structure of the time through her characters and their situations. As a man, I may not necessarily have been her target audience, yet I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would like to read the next installments.
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In the Shadow of Sinai
By Carole Towriss
Published by: DeWard Publishing Company
Paperback, 289 pages
Publication Date: November, 2012
Your Price: $13.99
Download the First two chapters
I was born and grew up in near-perfect San Diego, California. My mom taught me about Jesus before I could talk. I am incredibly thankful for the legacy left to me by her and her mother, a history of faith born of adversity. Compared to them, my life has been a cakewalk. She moved just a few miles down the road a few years ago to be closer to the grandkids (although she limits her visits to four hours or less due to the noise).
I’ve been married for nearly thirty years to an incredible man, John. We met in Oklahoma at Oral Roberts University where I majored in English Education. I taught English for several years before staying home full-time to begin our family. We have a plaque in our kitchen that says, “Our house is the perfect mixture of chaos and love.” With four children in the house, I think it tends more to the chaotic, but it is a lot of fun. At least when no one is threatening to kill anyone else.
Our eldest daughter is earning her BFA in photography. She took my author photo and other photos on this site. Emma was our Christmas gift eighteen years ago and is quite obviously our biological daughter—people say she looks like me and acts like my husband. Our younger three are adopted from Kazakhstan. MC is thirteen and our spontaneous, sporty, energetic one. She’s a fantastic softball player and spends her time generally being a typical 13-year-old. DK and JT are both eleven, and are four weeks apart. DK’s adorable diva attitude and JT’s never-ending adventures keep our house noisy and fun. Though our third daughter is Central Asian and our son is Russian, and she is a head taller than he is, people still ask if they’re twins. I don’t get it.
We now make our home outside Washington, DC. It’s a perfect place for our multicultural family. Our church has members from twenty-six countries, and the school system has students from over fifty. When I stand in the sanctuary and hear the myriad accents praising Jesus, it truly is a taste of heaven here on earth.
Note: We were provided with a complimentary copy of the book through Shaun Tabatt at Cross-Focused Reviews for an honest review of this title. Vicki has signed on next to read this one, but we may be giving away a gently used copy in the future!