In the waning days of the Ottoman Empire, a young Orthodox Jewish woman in the holy city of Jerusalem is expected to marry and produce many sons to help hasten the Messiah's arrival. While the feisty Esther Kaminsky understands her obligations, her artistic talent inspires her to secretly explore worlds outside her religion, to dream of studying in Paris—and to believe that God has a special destiny for her. When tragedy strikes her family, Esther views it as a warning from an angry God and suppresses her desires in order to become an obedient "Jerusalem maiden."
But when a surprising opportunity forces itself on to her preordained path, Esther finds her beliefs clashing dangerously with the passions she has staved off her entire life—forcing her to confront the most difficult and damning question of all: To whom must she be true, God or herself?
The author brings you into a world we have rarely seen or presumed to know of. She allows us to feel the pain and feelings, joys and accomplishments which were bittersweet. Read morePublished 3 days ago by L. S. Hampton
A book for today's young women who have little idea what sacrifices the women who came before them have made. Read morePublished 8 days ago by KathyS
Reading Esther's story is like watching a child sitting near a cliff. In innocence she glimpses the wonder and the beauty and the danger of going to close to the edge of her... Read morePublished 9 days ago by Terri M. Williams
Esther story spans five decades from her marriage at fourteen to her life as a mother and artist. Big surprise at the endPublished 10 days ago by Mary
The author captures the time, culture, loyalty and faith of Esther and allows the reader to feel and question the tug and pull that Esther feels her whole life. Read morePublished 10 days ago by Nance Likes to Dance
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Probably partly because I am Jewish, but also because it was so well done.i was only unhappy when the author skipped several years. Read morePublished 11 days ago by IGS
A beautiful account of an artist's struggle to reconcile her Ultra-Orthodox Jewish traditions with her emerging talent as a painter. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Catherine Sweitzer
Worth the read the characters are believable the setting and pace of the book keep the reader involved from beginning to the last linePublished 1 month ago by Gerald Eskenazi
Great read. Learned so much about the history during that period. She was a very strong women on many levels.Published 1 month ago by Martha Revis