I read this book last winter when my Woman 2 Woman Bible study group at the church was studying a book about Abraham by Charles Swindell called Abraham: One Nomad’s Amazing Journey of Faith. While the book about Abraham was a well-researched, in-depth Bible study, this book about his wife Sarai is more historical fiction since there is so little we’re told about Sarai (or Sarah) in the Bible. However, this too, is well-researched and Smith is very familiar with the culture of the time as well as the Biblical references, and creates a compelling historical fiction about the life of the wife of the patriarch of the Jewish faith.
While Abraham, according to Biblical accounts, was chosen by God to begin a new nation to revere and serve God, it was a journey of obedience for him over many decades where he often put Sarah into difficult and even dangerous situations because he tried to make moves on his own without consulting God. How Sarah may have viewed her position and her husband’s mistakes make for an interesting story, a kind of “stand by your man” story that nonetheless may well have filled her at times with longing, impatience, jealousy, fear, tenderness, and most often, love and respect. We can understand how after being barren all through the child-bearing years, God promises she will still bear a child at age 90, Sarah would have doubts. We can also understand the fear she must have experienced in Egypt when Abraham asked her to pretend to be only his sister and the pharaoh bought her hand in marriage with many gifts. The story also explores her relationship with Lot’s wife with her idols and her constant reminder that she had been blessed with children while Sarah was barren.
The story is told in a compelling fashion with the most interesting events of the more than 100 years of Sarah’s life including the destruction of Sodom and Abraham’s growing relationship with God. It is well-written, well researched, and totally plausible and interesting. * * * *