I must say I have never seen such a beautiful way of telling a very old story – the story of Sara and Abraham – from the moment they met until their first child was born. If you are a woman struggling to conceive, this book is for you – shows the trials and tribulations of a couple who do not let one of the spouse’s infertility get in the way, the life of nomad sheephearders in Canaan and the lives of women in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia.
I devoured this book from start to finish (and it was a big one!)
In his afterword, Card explains that here he is not an apologist for the Bible, but rather “an apologist for Sarah, a tough, smart, strong, bright woman in an era when women did not show up much in historical records.” He takes the tantalizingly rich references to Sarah in the book of Genesis and determines to bring her to life for his readers. This novel is not an epic volume rich in cultural and historical detail about ancient Mesopotamia, Canaan and Egypt.
Its focus is more what Card does best: exploring human motives and relationships, and the role of faith in individual lives. The entire novel is told exclusively from the point of view of Sarah and her sister Qira, whom Card has created as Lot’s wife. Qira is the blind, selfish materialist who cannot understand the kindness or self-sacrifice of the faithful who surround her and who chafes against her husband’s authority. Sarah, by contrast, is a wise and virtuous figure who struggles to have the unflinching faith of Abraham, even though she glimpses God’s presence in her life only rarely.