THE ESTHER PARADIGM
Hannah Pratt dreams of starting a school for the Bedouin clan she grew up with as a missionary kid, and finally her hopes are coming true. But shortly after she returns to the desert from her college years in the U.S., she discovers her parents have received threats from their Muslim neighbors. As the danger escalates, Hannah finds she's in the middle of a battle no one seems to understand. She must decide to what lengths she'll go to stay faithful to the mission God has called her. Even if it costs her everything.
As sheikh,Karim Al-Amir feels the weight of responsibility as the leader of his people. When a mysterious illness ravishes the clan's flocks and threatens to destroy their centuries-old way of life, locals believe the American doctors and their daughter, his childhood friend, Hannah, are to blame. Karim must do something to keep them safe -- even if the only solution can be found within marriage vows.
In a society where the line is drawn between us and them, Christianity is outlawed, and foreigners are mistrusted,will their union heal wounds or inflict the final fatal blow?
Well, I'm gobsmacked. Not sure I can find the words to express what an impact this book made on me. How much I loved the hero and heroine and their sublime romance even though it seemed like it shouldn't work.
First things first -- dust off your fainting couch (which shouldn't take too long if you're anything like me. Mine gets quite the work out with all the romance I love to read!) And then prepare to give yourself plenty of savoring time because Monzon has created such spellbinding imagery that you'll be tempted to linger for awhile.
We are treated to two very distinct first person points of view courtesy of Hannah and Karim. And I do mean distinct. Karim's 'voice' is so...exotic. Not sure if that's quite the right word but somehow, the author brings a multicultural flare to his thoughts. It's in the cadence of his words and the imagery he conjures up to describe or explain something...or someone. Like Hannah. Swoon. Fainting couch here I come! And it's also apparent in the reverence he has for his people and his God.
And Hannah -- caught between two worlds. She's lived among the Bedouin clan since she was six with the exception of a sojourn stateside for college. In some ways, she's spent her whole life trying to fit in - not Arabian enough for her beloved clansmen and women and not American enough for her college friends. She's a unique blend of both cultures and doesn't quite fit with either though there's no doubt her heart belongs to the people of the desert.
Hannah is an interesting mix of conviction and trepidation. She struggles, as many of us do, with being 'enough'. Doubts and feelings of inadequacy threaten the life God is leading her towards. Emotions are raw, circumstances uneasy and Hannah has to step out in faith in midst of turmoil. Such a beautiful parallel to the biblical Esther's story.
And the ending -- goosebump-raising, hallelujah chorus-singing perfection.
If you would like a chance to win a copy of The Esther Paradigm, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday May 27 2018. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!