From one of the best biblical fiction authors of our day comes Isaiah’s Daughter. This new story by Mesu Andrews is based upon the writings of the prophet Isaiah and the kingship of Hezekiah (2 Kings 18-20). In the opening scenes, Andrews introduces readers to a young orphan girl named Ishma (whose name means desolation). Having endured unimaginable hardships at the hands of the Israelites, she and her companion Yaira, are brought safely to the home of Isaiah. The prophet’s connections to the royal family continually place Ishma in the company of Prince Hezekiah. In time, she progresses from orphan to beloved daughter, classmate to helpmate, and finally—Queen of Judah.
In a post written by the author, she described how Hephzibah became the catalyst for this book. Basically, she loved how her name is translated: The Lord’s delight is in her, and imagined what such a woman would be like. Andrews went on to write how Rabbinic tradition holds that Hephzibah is the daughter of Isaiah, while scripture names her as the mother of Manasseh. As the first book in the series, Andrews takes us only as far as the birth of Manasseh. Even so, a lot of historical groundwork is laid and Mesu delves deeply into the interpersonal and spiritual conflicts her characters face.
This is not a light read. There are many characters and the author has bestowed nicknames on a few to make reading easier (like Zibah for Hephzibah). Having a familiarity with the biblical accounts was helpful, and if it’s been a while since you’ve read the related texts— I encourage you to do so. Not only will it give you an appreciation for what the author has accomplished in this work, but it will help you separate fact from fiction. Isaiah’s Daughter releases January 16th from Waterbrook Press.
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In this epic Biblical narrative, ideal for fans of The Bible miniseries, a young woman taken into the prophet Isaiah’s household rises to capture the heart of the future king.
Isaiah adopts Ishma, giving her a new name–Zibah, delight of the Lord–thereby ensuring her royal pedigree. Ishma came to the prophet’s home, devastated after watching her family destroyed and living as a captive. But as the years pass, Zibah’s lively spirit wins Prince Hezekiah’s favor, a boy determined to rebuild the kingdom his father has nearly destroyed. But loving this man will awake in her all the fears and pain of her past and she must turn to the only One who can give life, calm her fears, and deliver a nation.
Mesu’s Isaiah’s Daughter Release Facebook Live Event on Tuesday, January 16th at 8:00 pm EST. The event will take place live on Mesu’s Facebook author page!
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