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Love Amid the Ashes ( Book #1): A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Mesu Andrews
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (412 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Readers often think of Job sitting on the ash heap, his life in shambles. But how did he get there? What was Job's life like before tragedy struck? What did he think as his world came crashing down around him? And what was life like after God restored his wealth, health, and family?

Through painstaking research and a writer's creative mind, Mesu Andrews weaves an emotional and stirring account of this well-known story told through the eyes of the women who loved him. Drawing together the account of Job with those of Esau's tribe and Jacob's daughter Dinah, Love Amid the Ashes breathes life, romance, and passion into the classic biblical story of suffering and steadfast faith.

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

An epic story of love and forgiveness, suffering and restoration

When her beloved grandfather Isaac dies, Dinah must follow his final command: travel to Job's household to marry his son. After Job's world comes crashing down, Dinah finds herself drawn to this great man brought low. What will she risk to fight for his survival?

Mesu Andrews weaves an emotional and stirring account of Job and Dinah. Love Amid the Ashes breathes life, romance, and passion into the classic biblical story of suffering and steadfast faith.

"In Love Amid the Ashes, Mesu Andrews takes a biblical tale of great tragedy and skillfully weaves beauty and love amid the loss. Job's story brought vividly to life!"--Jill Eileen Smith, bestselling author of Michal and Abigail

"Mesu Andrews has skillfully brought the Old Testament story of Job to life in Love Amid the Ashes. Throughout this book she explains Job's faithful adherence to studying the teachings of El Shaddai. Then she creatively reveals how those principles are demonstrated by his interaction with Dinah. You will be moved to tears as the characters reflect the mysterious role suffering plays in our faith. If you enjoy a story that includes a powerful plot, romantic passion, and biblical truth, read this book!"--Carol Kent, speaker and author of Between a Rock and a Grace Place

Mesu Andrews is a speaker who has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture. Harnessing her deep understanding and love for God's Word, Andrews brings the biblical world alive for her readers in this debut novel. She lives in Washington.

About the Author

Mesu Andrews is an active speaker who has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture. Harnessing her deep understanding and love for God's Word, Andrews brings the biblical world alive for her readers in this debut novel. She lives in Washington.

Product Details

  • File Size: 769 KB
  • Print Length: 417 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0800734076
  • Publisher: Revell (March 1, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004JHY650
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #80,370 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
70 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beauty from ashes... March 31, 2011
Since the horror of her experience at Shechem, when her brothers bathed a city in blood in the name of honor, Jacob's only daughter Dinah has lived under an oppressive cloud of shame. A virtual outcast in her own family, Dinah's knowledge of healing and herb lore earns her a place as her grandfather Isaac's nurse. But from his deathbed, Isaac sends Dinah's future down a path she never expected by ordering her to marry into Esau's clan. Though regarded as a fallen woman, Dinah is covered by the covenant promise bestowed on her father's line - a promise that through marriage she could bless her uncle's family. Only one man from Esau's clan steps forward to honor Isaac's wish - Job, the wisest man in the East, offers his oldest son in marriage. On the journey to Job's home, Dinah is awed by this righteous man's ability to look beyond the rumors and accept her as she is, in spite of her past. Job's desire to see Dinah restored, if only she'll have the faith to accept Yahweh's forgiveness, plants the first seeds of hope in Dinah that she might have a future free of condemnation.

But shortly after their arrival, Dinah's hard-won hope and fragile faith are tested as her newfound friend and benefactor loses everything. Overnight, Job is stripped of family, wealth, and servants, and when his household and riches are reduced to rubble, the man himself falls prey to a crippling illness. Covered in painful sores, with his very flesh decaying before his eyes, Job is reduced to living in piles of filth and waste, sustained by Dinah's healing knowledge of herbs. Through the horrifying reality of being brought so low, Job clings to his faith in Yahweh's greater plan, and Dinah finds fresh purpose as his friend and healer.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I couldn't put it down" read! February 27, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Love Amid the Ashes captured me on the opening pages; the generational flow chart and scripture setting the scene for each chapter hooked me immediately. The book flowed so easily and so naturally,I truly had difficulty putting it down.

As a student of the Bible I enjoyed the historical foundation of the novel; a place of familiarity punctuated with Mesu's creativity in bringing humanity to the fore.

How wonderful it was to experience the humanity of God's people; to be reminded that we are but weak flesh and God forgives and loves us always. Thank you Mesu for giving us a very human view of the life of Job; one we too can relate to daily.
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64 of 73 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Started fairly strong, but then fizzled October 13, 2011
By Michele
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In Love Amid the Ashes, Mesu Andrews weaves together two Biblical families -- those of Job and Jacob. Although this struck me at first as a bit too convoluted and contrived, once I read the Author's Note in the back (yes, I read the back of the book!) and saw how she came up with the idea of Dinah becoming Job's second wife, it actually seemed plausible. And I have to say that the book started out strong. Other than the fact that Jacob and Esau fought like immature juveniles rather than 125-year-old men, the author did a good job of creating characters and setting. Her re-telling of the slaughter of the Shechemites was effective at setting the mood of isolation and rejection that Dinah suffered within her family.

The story continued to move along pretty well -- Job seemed a little too "aware" of Dinah, but that wasn't a terribly huge distraction -- until about a third of the way through. After the first wave of Satan's onslaught hit Job and he lost his children and all his wealth, the book began to seriously lose traction. The dialogue and actions of the characters fizzled, lacking depth and authenticity. For example, both Job and his wife continually smiled and chuckled about minor (even silly) little things that people in their shoes would certainly have been too grief-stricken to even notice. And Job's wife suddenly became obsessed with trying to get Dinah to marry her own childhood sweetheart who she still carried a torch for (I never could quite figure out how she really felt about either her husband Job or her "friend" Sayyid). The author over-emphasized Dinah's beauty by having other characters continually thinking she was "beautiful," "stunning", etc; I felt like I was being beat over the head with it.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
The premise for this book was fantastic. The delivery of it, however, was fairly convoluted.

This is a tough review for me to write because I really wanted to love this book. There were parts of the story that I really liked, and then there were parts that I found myself skimming through (closer to the end.) I really loved the beginning when Job's plan was for Dinah to marry his son. It seemed like he and Dinah were overly fond of each other, though. Not sure how I felt about that, so the verdict is still out on that one. I also loved the rehashing and remembering of Dinah's experience with the Prince of Shechem. That was very well done. I felt the horror of it all. I also felt like I was there and suffered along with her. The disdain she received from others for twenty years and being despised was sad, but well done and believably presented in the story. Then things in this novel got a bit muddied for me.

There were too many players and points of view for me to really connect with the majority of the characters like I wanted to. I wasn't fond of Dinah's relationship with the Cushite servant. It seemed like their relationship was not typical for the time period, plus their friendship seemed a bit juvenile. I also felt like they pulled me out of the story and the time period on a regular basis.

There was simply too much content involving Dinah and the other girl, the Cushite. I loved the tension between Sayyid and Sitis. His obsession with her was creepy, but very well done. Job's suffering was well done, too. His wife's issues were well presented. I felt like I understood her. At the same time I wasn't particularly fond of how things turned out for Job with his new family because it seemed wrong after all that happened in the first three quarters of the book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Was a real help in sorting out the long-winded conversations in the book of Job.
Published 16 hours ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Love amid the ashes an amazing love story
I found myself wanting to console the characters. This book was well written. It was an eye opener for me as it brought life and opened my mind to possibilities of what may have... Read more
Published 9 days ago by Patrice
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good accounts of the Bible stories brought to life as it probably was..Good reading
Published 15 days ago by lourdes
5.0 out of 5 stars If you love Christian fiction
If you love Christian fiction, you will love getting to know Job from this author's perspective. Amazing, heart wrenching details about what Job went through according to... Read more
Published 15 days ago by K. Vaughn
5.0 out of 5 stars Understanding Job Better
This is an excellent fictional story about Job. The author has shown good work in compiling her information for the book. Read more
Published 18 days ago by Dave Peters
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good Biblical fiction
Very good Biblical fiction.. Mesu Andrews did an awesome taking the Book of Job and weaving a line of fiction through it.
Published 22 days ago by jbnan
5.0 out of 5 stars Stirring
Mesu Andrews brings the stories of the Bible to life in a wonderfully enriching way. The characters are as real as my neighbors and the world they live in both familiar and... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Kate, booklover
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating read!
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was well written to see the emotional side of some biblical characters. God's love shines through.
Published 27 days ago by I like this game
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent story, characters & writing
Excellent story, characters & writing. This story puts a new light on the life of Job. I highly recommend this to all readers of Christian Historical Fiction.
Published 28 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars I really enjoyed it. Really
Interesting twist on the epic story of Job. Combining Dinah's continued story gives time and historical place to the whole thing. I really enjoyed it. Really!
Published 29 days ago by Leslie Greenetz
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More About the Author

Mesu grew up with a variegated Christian heritage. With grandparents from the Pilgrim Holiness, Nazarene, and Wesleyan Churches, her dad was a Quaker and mom charismatic. As you might imagine, God was a central figure in most family discussions, but theology was a battlefield and Scripture the weapon. As a rebellious teenager, Mesu rejected God and His Word, but discovered Jesus as a life-transforming Savior through the changed life of an old friend.

The desire for God's Word exploded with her new commitment, but devotional time was scarce due to the demands of a young wife and mother. So Mesu scoured the only two theology books available--children's Bible stories and her Bible. The stories she read to her daughters at night pointed her to the Bible passages she studied all day. She became an avid student of God's Word, searching historical and cultural settings as well as ancient texts and original languages.

Mesu and her husband Roy have raised those two daughters and are now enjoying grandkids, but Mesu's love for God's Word has never waned. She now writes biblical novels, rich with spiritual insight learned through fascinating discoveries in historical research.

Her first novel, Love Amid the Ashes (Revell), won the 2012 ECPA Book of the Year in the Debut Author Category. Love's Sacred Song (Revell), the Song of Solomon story, is available now and received a 4 ½ star rating from RT Reviews. And Love in a Broken Vessel (Revell), the story of Hosea and Gomer, releases in March 2013. A fourth book is scheduled for release in March 2014.

Roy and Mesu live in the Pacific Northwest with their Rottweiler-pitbull named Bouzer, who keeps Mesu company while she writes. Bouzer also enjoys watching movies, long walks by waterfalls, and sitting by the fireplace on rainy Northwest days.

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