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Lydia, Woman of Philippi Paperback – October 3, 2017
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I could see Lydia’s life happening as it did from her early teen years through her realistic life struggles with an arranged marriage that was not pleasant, raising a young daughter, but wanting to follow Adonai instead of the Roman God even though she suffered loss, grief and hardship. Her faith, fortitude, persistence, and love for Adonai emphasized the importance of fully surrendering to God, even during the early years for Christian believers. My emotions were attentive to all Lydia might of endured that is not told in the Bible. However, the beautiful experience of her encounter with Paul that led Lydia to her own spiritual conversion with salvation, baptism and in filling of the Holy Spirit to seeing others following Adonai with the teachings of Apostle Paul caused tears to fall while reading. Along with reading how possibly Lydia and her business of selling purple came about during a time women were not in business. Lydia selling purple was a tribute to her loving earthly father and the blessings of her sovereign Heavenly Father, Adonai.
Diana Wallis Taylor’s writing lures her readers into the past with all the research she has done to create her Biblical fiction books. Lydia could become readers’ favorite Biblical woman character after reading this remarkable novel.
I received an ARC of this book from the publisher, Whitaker House. I was not required to write a positive review but have expressed my honest opinion. I gave Lydia: Woman of Philippi 5 stars. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Taylor’s Biblical fiction books in the future.
I loved this cover, it really captured the character. Absolutely gorgeous! I’ll admit that I picked up this book because of the cover and the character but I really had a hard time with this book. Which super bums me out because I wanted to love it.
I had several big issues:
1. This book is dialogue heavy. While dialogue tends to read fast for many, it bogs me down. I want to be pulled into a scene. I want to know what a character if smelling, seeing, touching and feeling. The back and forth dialogue needed more balance with narrative and action.
2. Once converted, Lydia became quite preachy to everyone she encountered. Yes, I think we should spread the good news of God’s love but the plan of salvation need not be outlined three times within a couple of chapters. These elements felt inorganic and forced.
3. The pacing was at breakneck speed. The story moved very quickly from Lydia’s youth to adulthood and then middle age in a rather rapid manner. In this manner, I felt as if Lydia aged as rapidly as a simulated life model. One chapter she was giving birth and then by the next she was nearing the end of her childbearing days. It all just felt so rushed. There needed to be more narrative to catapult Lydia from point A to point B.
This story has promise. It has a good premise and interesting characters. I just feel that there should be a better balance to the story elements.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Celebrate Lit. I was not required to write a positive review, and have not been compensated for this. All opinions are my own.
This book is stuffed with scripture, both from the Torah and the New Testament as Lydia is living in the time frame just after Christ's death and resurrection. I throughly enjoyed the ways in which the scriptures were brought to life in Lydia's life and the ending was quite satisfactory. Lydia has always made me think of the Proverbs 31 wife, and this book just made her so very alive and realistic on every level.
A super five star read which I can see being used even in Bible study groups. My copy came from Celebrate Lit. My review, thoughts and opinions are my own, left of my own free choosing.