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Mark of the Lion : A Voice in the Wind, An Echo in the Darkness, As Sure As the Dawn (Vol 1-3) Paperback – September 1, 1998
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About the Author
Francine Rivers began her literary career at the University of Nevada, Reno, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and journalism. From 1976 to 1985, she had a successful writing career in the general market, and her books were highly acclaimed by readers and reviewers. Although raised in a religious home, Francine did not truly encounter Christ until later in life, when she was already a wife, a mother of three, and an established romance novelist.
Francine and her husband, Rick, live in Northern California and enjoy the time spent with their three grown children and every opportunity to spoil their grandchildren.
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It bears resemblance to some earlier novels on Christians in the Roman empire, at some points exceedingly so, but that needn't be held against the author. There are, however, too many inconsistencies in the story, for it to be regarded as a proper historical novel (I hope that's the English expression) — from description of certain behaviour and relationships between characters, to the use of German and details such as corn and carbonated beer, neither of which were known at the time. Random Latin expressions do little to compensate such slips. I struggled with lack of accuracy to the point of frustration at times, but then I have an eye for detail.
As a inspiration, though, series is very good. Though a little predictable and perhaps a bit cliché at times, story still feels quite lovely and encourages the reader to reflect on himself and grow, following the lead of characters. It paints brilliantly the serenity and peace of walking with the Lord and wakes the desire for a change of heart.
All in all, I found series both inspiring and entertaining. I would recommend it to anyone eager to read Christian fiction, but without expectation to learn history in the process.
Consider it fiction, coincidentally set in a world, resembling antic Europe.
I am just in awe of Francine Rivers' ability to bring the Word of God to life through riveting story-telling and complex characters I always end up feeling like I know, love, and miss once I finish! Although this series is fiction, the scripture woven through it creates POWERFUL lessons and inspiration for real-life application. I was absolutely fascinated with the historical backdrop of ancient Rome, as it brought more clarity to my understanding of scripture (from Bible Study, church, 12 years of Catholic schools etc) because she intimately details what a Christian's earthly plight was like after Christ's death and resurrection. Rivers does not shy away from the grim realities of that time: pagan worship, gory violence, oppression, prejudice, promiscuity, horrific torture, callous injustice and all around evil...oddly, also many parallels to our current self-centric society. Yet anyone who reads this series can't help but feel INTENSELY inspired from the powerful message of strength, perseverance, hope, and peace from Christ amongst it all....and I am now going back to each book recording everything I underlined along the way so I don't forget it! Thank you Francine for using the truly unique gift God has given you for all of our benefits! Like so many others, I am forever changed from reading your books.....you are "feeding the sheep"! Please write more historical fiction from that era!