Saturday, March 3, 2018
Review of A Passionate Hope by Jill Eileen Smith
About the Book ~
Can one woman's prayers change the world?
Hannah and her husband, Elkanah, share a deep and abiding love for each other, for their God, and for His tabernacle at Shiloh. Greatly disturbed by the corruption of the priests, they long for restoration and pray for a deliverer. But nothing changes as the years pass. Years that also reveal Hannah to be barren.
Pressured by his family to take another wife, Elkanah marries Peninnah, who quickly begins to bear children. Disgraced and taunted by her husband's new wife, Hannah turns again to prayers that seem doomed to go unanswered. Do her devotion and kindness in the face of Peninnah's cruelty count for nothing? Will God remain silent and indifferent to her pleas?
Travel back to the dusty streets of Shiloh with an expert guide as Jill Eileen Smith brings to life a beloved story of hope, patience, and deliverance that shows that even the most broken of relationships can be restored.
For more information about Jill Eileen Smith and her books, check out her website here!
My Thoughts ~
A Passionate Hope proved to be the kind of story that will emotionally ravage you, but then builds you up stronger than before. Basically, it was exactly what I expected. ;-)
While there isn't a lot of detail to Hannah's story in the Bible, there also isn't a lot of wiggle room. We know that Hannah was barren, and that while her husband, Elkanah, loved her dearly, he had a second wife with whom he had children. We know that Hannah cried out to God when the taunts became too much to bear. I thought the author did a wonderful job bringing Hannah, Elkanah, and even Peninnah to life. While we won't know what their lives were really like on this earth, this portrayal felt so true to what we know about them and the culture at the time.
When you read A Passionate Hope, be prepared for a STRONG emotional response! One minute I felt like an enraged Hulk with a caffeine headache, and the next minute I cried more than I did while I was pregnant. While I knew what was going to happen and I understand the pressure Elkanah faced, I must admit that I wanted to kick him repeatedly in the shin for marrying Peninnah. However, the author also did a wonderful job reminding readers that the polygamy so many men succumbed to in the Bible was NEVER God's plan, but had somehow become the way of things, an area of sin that was often ignored. We also see glimpses of the increasing sin at the Tabernacle, the hopeless desperation of God's people, and a temporary deliverer in the form of Samuel.
Hannah's journey was a long, painful one that she handled with more grace than I think I could have. A Passionate Hope will challenge you to trust, hope, and obey God. No. Matter. What. Truly, Jill Eileen Smith has written a beautiful story of hope in a painful situation.
Four Stars ~ I thoroughly enjoyed A Passionate Hope! This is the latest installment in Jill Eileen Smith's Daughter's of the Promised Land Series. Biblical Fiction fans will not want to miss these beautiful books!
I received a copy of A Passionate Hope by Jill Eileen Smith from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. All opinions expressed are my own.
See you next time, and God bless you guys!!!
~V. Joy Palmer
V. Joy Palmer is the author of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations and a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is also an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. In her spare time, Joy is an unprofessional chocolate connoisseur/binger, and she loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens she mentors. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.