Thursday, March 5, 2015

Angels At The Gate (a book review)


In Angels At The Gate, another nameless woman from the bible comes to life under T.K. Thorne’s deft hand.  An amazing storyteller, Thorne takes us back in time to 1748 BCE.  It is the time of Abraham, of Lot, of men believed to be angels and messengers of God, and it is the time of the infamous Sodom and Gomorrah.

As she did in Noah’s Wife, Thorne gives us a brilliantly imagined alternate history. She gives a face, a name, a life to another faceless, nameless woman of the bible. Here it is Lot’s wife - Adira.

We follow the fortunes of this young woman.  Called Adir, a male’s name, Adira is raised as a boy.  As member of her stern but loving father’s caravan, she is schooled in the art of trade negotiations, the languages of the people in the lands they traverse, and duty.  Under the sterner hand of the caravan’s cook, Chiram, she learns the meaning of hard work, loss and loyalty.

She observes and appreciates the freedom allowed her male persona, which the females around her will never know.  The woman in her stirs; however, every time the tall blue-eyed stranger comes near. Though the man and his brother are thought to be messengers of god, she cannot help the feelings and the fervent wish, at least for him, to reveal the woman she is.

Adira’s father sees his daughter coming to an age where her womanhood becomes obvious.  It is a dangerous thing among the tribes, this deception.  A woman would be put to death for daring such.  He tells Adira she must go live with women relatives, but Adira balks and gets her way to stay one more time.

The reprieve is cut short all too soon, and her cherished childhood comes to an abrupt end.  The life she knew and people she loved are ripped away.  With only her faithful and much loved dog, Nami, she embarks on a path in pursuit of the messengers of god.  The winding path takes her through trials and triumphs, and eventually to Lot’s house and Sodom.  To tell you more would require a ‘spoiler alert’ and I will not do that.

Thorne’s agile imagination and extensive research, give Adira a believable history - a name, a life and a story worthy of writing and reading about.  Here we have the story of the woman who would be Lot’s wife, Adira, imagined as it could have been, and who can say Thorne didn’t channel it as it really was.





1 comment:

Laura Parenteau said...

Love the way you capture the feel of the story without giving any spoilers. Great review for a great book! --The Author's Sister