“Miriam” by Mesu Andrews
Biblical Fiction, A Treasure of the Nile Novel
Review copy source: The Publishers/Author
My rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
About the Book:
The Hebrews call me prophetess, the Egyptians a seer.
But I am neither. I am simply a watcher of Israel
and the messenger of El Shaddai.
When He speaks to me in dreams, I interpret. When He whispers a melody, I sing.
At eighty-six, Miriam had devoted her entire life to loving El Shaddai and serving His people as both midwife and messenger. Yet when her brother Moses returns to Egypt from exile, he brings a disruptive message. God has a new name – Yahweh – and has declared a radical deliverance for the Israelites.
Miriam and her beloved family face an impossible choice: cling to familiar bondage or embrace uncharted freedom at an unimaginable cost. Even if the Hebrews survive the plagues set to turn the Nile to blood and unleash a maelstrom of frogs and locusts, can they weather the resulting fury of the Pharaoh?
Enter an exotic land where a cruel Pharaoh reigns, pagan priests wield black arts, and the Israelites cry out to a God they only think they know.
I am very much a fan of Biblical Fiction. The tricky thing is finding *good* Biblical fiction that is actually Biblical. I found “Miriam” to fit just this description. I thoroughly enjoyed this rich story and was very impressed with all the Biblical research Mesu seamlessly wove into it. Truly, it was spectacular.
Mesu brought new light to the familiar Bible account, and had me enraptured the whole time right up until the very end. Even though I know how the Bible account goes, I was still on the edge of my seat as I read, and that expresses great God-given talent in the author.
There were parts that had me smiling, laughing, crying, and one point I had goosebumps! There were so many heart-touching moments and things that really made you think.
And the characters were done so well. I loved Miriam – she was so real. In her faith, in her doubts, in her daily life. Exceptionally well done! And I really loved Eleazar too. He was a great character, and though he has his issues (who doesn’t?!), I so very much enjoyed his character. He was quiet, and maybe a bit angry at times (but that seems to be “my type” because nearly every character I love is that way..hmmm…), but his heart was good and still reachable in the end.
Each of the plagues were really well-written too, and made my skin crawl at the horrid-ness of them. And the sadness that Pharaoh wouldn’t relent, even for his children.
I underlined so many sections of this book because it was full of meaningful quotes and lessons. It was my desire to share them here, but there are SO many that you’ll just have to read the book for yourself to discover all of its gems. :)
Suffice it to say, I was not disappointed with “Miriam” at all – I greatly enjoyed it and am looking forward to more from Mesu!
Just a few of the quotes that I liked:
“El-Shaddai has not abandoned you any more than He’s abandoned Israel. For reasons that only He knows, He has chosen to become silent, and you must trust His silence – as Israel has trusted His silence all these years.”
“You can learn to know Him anew, but you must trust Him in the silence, daughter.”
“We can plant the seeds, but only God can make them grow.”
Taliah sat down beside her and scooted close. “It’s more than a little reassuring to know that even a prophetess has questions.” Warmth flooded Miriam’s cheeks, not with shame or embarrassment, but with a deep sense of awe. Perhaps Shaddai’s silence was nurturing seeds beyond Miriam’s garden.”
“Many gods have been created by men, but only one God created all men. It is that one God that Israel serves – Ell-Shaddai, the Almighty – who chose to make a covenant with Abraham and to bless all nations through his descendants.”
“Utlimately, my dear,” Ima Jochebed chimed in, “it is El-Shaddai who must reveal Himself to us. We are but dust and could never climb to the heights of His holiness to reach Him.”….”But He is near to those who seek Him with their whole hearts. We’ve seen it proven repeatedly in our lifetime.”
Abba chuckled. “Anyone can develop a *God sense* similar to the way we use other senses to experience things. Though we can’t taste, touch, see, hear, or smell our invisible God, He sometimes uses those experiences to communicate His nearness.”
“Like the warm breeze I sometimes felt while inside the longhouse, that proved Shaddai was near.”
“You simply know He is.There’s no magic or sign. He just *is*”
I’ll continue to seek Shaddai – and wait for Him to reveal Himself
Still, He had the patience to woo her as she made these discoveries at her own pace. Her heart broke at the reality.
“No matter who else disappoints you, Yahweh’s love endures. We need never doubt His love – ever.”
“Yahweh is more interested in you knowing Him than pleasing yourself – or even pleasing others.”
Yahweh wasted no experience, no matter how seemingly insignificant.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publishers/author as one of Mesu’s Biblical Fiction Fan (BFF) team in exchange for my honest review, which I have given.