James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Midwest Book Review
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The Fiction Shelf
Gideon: The Sound and the Glory
Critique: A truly riveting, consistently entertaining, and deftly crafted read from beginning to end, "Gideon: The Sound and the Glory" reveals Joseph Ganci as a master of the biblically-based historical fiction genre. This is one of those rare novels that will linger in mind and memory long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf. While very highly recommended, especially for community library collections.
Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite
Gideon: The Sound and the Glory by Joseph Ganci is a masterpiece of a story, a historical fiction read that will transport readers back to the biblical era, rich in history and culture. The novel follows the story of Gideon, a woodcutter and a simple man charged with an incredible mission: free Israel and conquer the Midian Empire. Consumed by fear and doubts, Gideon learns to trust in God and to take steps that soon become bold as his confidence in God grows even stronger. Get ready for an epic adventure with this warrior and watch giants tumble and monuments fall to the flames as he rides to glory, under the shadow of God's protection.
May 8, 2017/in Fiction, Historical Fiction, Indie Book Reviews, IR approved /by IR Staff
Verdict: In GIDEON: THE SOUND AND THE GLORY, Joseph Ganci effectively transports the reader back to the Old Testament era, where violence of the most extreme sort by the Israelites was sanctified by God.
Joseph Ganci's novel takes on the character of the reluctant and self-deprecating warrior Gideon who, as instructed by Yahweh, freed the ungrateful,idol-worshiping Israelites from their seven-year servitude to the Midian Empire. Rejecting their offer to be their king, Gideon instead presided over the Israelites as a judge. Upon his death, however, the Israelite's proved themselves unworthy again as they returned to idol worship.
One of the reasons even secularists prefer the New Testament, to the Old was the former's gentle, non-violent message (Thomas Jefferson, an atheist, cut out the sections of the Bible dealing with such themes, and stuck them on his wall). "Turn the other cheek" is the phrase that sums up the New Testament best. The phrase that sums up the violent, vengeful, angry, prejudicial (only Israelites are the "Chosen of God) tone of the Old Testament would be "God is on our side, and because of that we can commit horrifying murders." This tone would be the main reason the Jewish establishment, trapped in Old Testament mode, rejected Jesus as the Son of God because he came as a lamb and not a lion.
Ganci perfectly captures the era of the Old Testament, where Israelite women hammer tent pegs through the skulls of sleeping enemies and near genocide was visited upon unbelievers by God- directed armies. It is clear he knows his subject, and the inner monologs of his characters ring true. An example of which is the Israelite's Heber's thoughts regarding the martial law imposed on him by the Midianites: "Heber could feel the road to Mount Tabor trembling under the pounding stride of so many soldiers, and he looked to the skies that had filled with dark clouds as the tears of heaven also gathered."
But for those who are not devout believers in Yahweh, and thus don't subscribe to the notion present even today in Israel that the Jews are the chosen of God, Ganci has selected a perfect figure that has a universal appeal: that of the reluctant and self-deprecating warrior doubting his destiny. From Spartacus to George Washington to the cinema image of Humphrey Bogart, the theme of a figure denying God or fate choosing him for greatness, and would rather sit destiny out, democratizes them for audiences, who may secretly feel that destiny might very well select them no matter what their station in life.
~Ron Capshaw for Indie Reader
Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite
Gideon: The Sound and the Glory by Joseph Ganci is a masterpiece of a story, a historicalfiction read that will transport readers back to the biblical era, richin history and culture. The novel follows the story of Gideon, awoodcutter and a simple man charged with an incredible mission: freeIsrael and conquer the Midian Empire. Consumed by fear and doubts,Gideon learns to trust in God and to take steps that soon become bold as his confidence in God grows even stronger. Get ready for an epicadventure with this warrior and watch giants tumble and monuments fallto the flames as he rides to glory, under the shadow of God'sprotection.
Here is a tale that powerfully captures the essentialelements of the spiritual journey of Israel, a story that vividly brings to life one of the many biblical heroes that are often forgotten. Thestory is written in an excellent manner and readers will love thebalance that comes out neatly between character, plot, and setting.Joseph Ganci's prose is arresting, peppered with wonderful imagery andsuccinct descriptions of plot, characters, and setting. The themes aremasterfully created and they are woven into the story in a way thatallows the reader to enjoy both the inspiration the story offers and the accompanying action. The book explores powerful spiritual and political themes, capturing the conflicts and the dynamics of life within thecommunity of God's chosen people. Gideon: The Sound and the Glory willappeal to fans of political thrillers, adventure, and conflict-drivenstories that are laced with intense action. I was hugely entertained bythe writing and the plot. A real page-turner!
From the Author
And Gideon sent messengers throughout all mountEphraim, saying, come down against the Midianites, and take before them 'thewaters unto Beth-barah' and the Jordan.
I started diggingdown and found it meant the shallow waters and the only fording place ofthe entire Jordan River. It was in effecta military dispatch - directing the army of Ephraimto cut off the desperate flight of theremaining Midian camel cavalry. Gideonwould drive the enemy like hounds to the hunter. A long-held mystery started, tounravel, and with that, I was off to theraces.