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The Triumph of Deborah by Eva Etzioni-Halevy

The Triumph of Deborah

by Eva Etzioni-Halevy

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I don't read historical fiction from Bible times too often, because I'd rather read the Bible, but this book was okay. I think this book is more about Barak and the women he loved--Deborah being one of them. From the title, I would have expected the book to be all about her. ( )
  eliorajoy | Jun 20, 2016 |
The Triumph of Deborah is a book about ancient Israel. The Canaanite army has been threatening to invade Israel and Deborah, a renown prophet and judge, recruits Barak, a young warrior, to lead an army to strike first. The battle is successful and Barak returns to his home with a bunch of liberated Israelite slaves and the Canaanite princess to take as his wife. Barak is a renown womanizer who has many conquests. He has intrigued Deborah with a condition that she sleep with him in return for him leading the army.

I enjoyed reading about the historical period represented in this book. It was uplifting to read about a powerful woman from that time period. I was a little disappointed, however, because from the title of the book I expected it to focus much more on Deborah. Instead it focused on Barak and the drama revolving around the women who loved him or those he wanted to sleep with. The middle of the book began to drag for me because I became bored with all of the women who were pining over him and the book focused on this for quite a while. I was also frustrated with the character of Barak. He was a very selfish character who eventually did grow, but I saw this as his desires changing rather than him growing beyond his self-centered outlook on life. I really liked reading about ancient Israel, and I may seek out other books about Deborah. I would probably read more by this author, but if I was recommending a book about women of the bible to a friend I would recommend the Red Tent first. ( )
  Cora-R | Jan 13, 2016 |
Enjoyable and an easy read. ( )
  fglass | Sep 14, 2010 |
In the Bible (Judges 4-5), Deborah and Barak's accomplishments are told twice, once in prose and one in poetry form. In The Triumph of Deborah, the prophetess and her warrior are brought to life with a plethora of details, complete with flaws and personality quirks, which resulted in an (for me) unexpectedly fun read. I'm not an avid Bible-reader and their story was only one of a multitude when I first read it, but Etzioni-Halevy really manages to conjure up a time and a place long since gone in a way that invites the reader and makes us taste the desert dust along with the characters.

In places, the novel is more romance novel than historical novel (especially when it comes to Barak's "adventures"), but it works as both. The historical parts mainly caught my attention and brought me into the life of these intriguing people. The details of society and the various customs were very well described and it's obvious that the writer knows her history (and her country) well. Couple that with her easy voice and you have a story that flows so well that the hours just run by as you keep turning the pages. I reread the Judges chapters after finishing this novel and the story just has so much more meaning now - regardless that Etzioni-Halevy's book is fiction. She has written about Ruth and Hannah previously and I hope she continues writing about Biblical women.

If your genre is historical romance novels, this is one you should run out and buy! If you're not a fan of the romance, just flip the page when the saucy stuff comes along and you will still be treated to an intriguing look into life in Biblical times. At times, the "Harlequin" level got a little too high for my taste (too much of the "heaving bosoms" stuff), but I skimmed those parts and still enjoyed the ride very much - I'm looking forward to reading more of Etzioni-Halevy. ( )
  -Eva- | Feb 21, 2010 |
This book was a good and interesting read. It was great to see that all of the characters were in depth, not just the main ones. I was surprised how intense the love triangle was, it just kept building. My main issue with the novel is how often the narration switched between characters and from past to present; it caused a lot of confusion (especially the beginning). Any confusion was forgotten at the end, when everyone's story came together for a climactic and complete ending.

Read my full synopsis & review here: http://muse-in-the-fog.blogspot.com/2010/01/book-review-triumph-of-deborah-by-ev... ( )
  Muse_in_the_fog | Feb 2, 2010 |
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Deborah, a Prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, was judging Israel at that time. She would sit under the palm tree of Deborah... in the hill country of Efraim, and the Israelites came up to her for judgement. - Judges 4:4-5
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Two women were standing on high places, shielding their eyes from the blazing sun with their hands, peering into the distance in search of messengers from the battlefield.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0452289068, Paperback)

The richly imagined tale of Deborah, the courageous Biblical warrior who saved her people from certain destruction

In ancient Israel, war is looming. Deborah, a highly respected leader, has coerced the warrior Barak into launching a strike against the neighboring Canaanites. Against all odds he succeeds, returning triumphantly with Asherah and Nogah, daughters of the Canaanite King, as his prisoners. But military victory is only the beginning of the turmoil, as a complex love triangle develops between Barak and the two princesses.

Deborah, recently cast off by her husband, develops a surprising affinity for Barak. Yet she struggles to rebuild her existence on her own terms, while also groping her way toward the greatest triumph of her life.

Filled with brilliantly vivid historical detail, The Triumph of Deborah is the absorbing and riveting tale of one of the most beloved figures in the Old Testament, and a tribute to feminine strength and independence.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:14 -0400)

A fictional account of how the biblical heroine Deborah saves the Israelites from destruction at the hands of their Canaanite enemies by coercing the warrior Barak to launch a preemptive strike in which he succeeds against all odds.

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