The Centurion's Wife

( 191 )

Overview

A sweeping saga of the dramatic events
surrounding the birth of Christianity—
and the very personal story of Leah,
compelled into a betrothal she never wanted,
drawn by a faith she never expected...

When her family's wealth and power are lost forever, Leah is sent to Pontius Pilate in hopes that he might ...

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Centurion's Wife, The (Acts of Faith Book #1)

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Overview

A sweeping saga of the dramatic events
surrounding the birth of Christianity—
and the very personal story of Leah,
compelled into a betrothal she never wanted,
drawn by a faith she never expected...

When her family's wealth and power are lost forever, Leah is sent to Pontius Pilate in hopes that he might arrange a strategic marriage. But despite her betrothed's striking countenance and position, Leah deems life as a centurion's wife a fate worse than death.

Head of the garrison near Galilee, Alban has ambitions that could one day see him at the seat of power—in Rome itself. Eager to prove himself, he takes on the assignment of a lifetime, one that will put his career, his beliefs, and his very life at risk.

But when the death—and missing body—of an obscure rabbi find Leah and Alban searching for the same answers, what they discover changes everything.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Grandmother of the evangelical Christian fiction boom, Oke teams with Bunn, another established author brand, in this biblical fiction embroidered around a minor character in the gospels, one Roman soldier whose young servant was miraculously healed by Jesus. The centurion Alban seeks advancement in the Roman government of occupied Judaea. His plan to advance will win him an unwilling bride, Leah, a young woman whose family's economic disgrace has forced her into servitude in the household of Roman governor Pilate, who has recently condemned to death a controversial Jewish spiritual leader by the name of Jesus. This nicely plotted series kickoff provides interesting back stories for the central characters that cry out for further development. A few supporting characters hold interest, including Alban's fellow soldier Linux and Pilate's wife Procula, another intriguing bit player in the gospel of Christ's passion. Unfortunately, the characters who follow Jesus have but a single dimension: piety. Fans of these popular authors will love their joint effort imagining and animating the context of Christianity's birth.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764205149
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/1/2009
  • Series: Acts of Faith , #1
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 279,290
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Davis Bunn, the author of twenty bestsellers, has received numerous accolades, including three Christy Awards for excellence in fiction. His books have sold more than six million copies in sixteen languages. He and his wife, Isabella, make their home near Oxford, England, where they teach and write. Davis serves as Writer-In-Residence at Regent's Park College, Oxford University, and is a member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.

Janette Oke, recipient of the 1992 ECPA President's Award and the 1999 CBA Life Impact Award for her significant contribution to the Christian book industry, has also won both the Gold Medallion Award and the Christy Award for fiction. Janette and her husband, Edward, live in Alberta, Canada.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 191 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(108)

4 Star

(45)

3 Star

(21)

2 Star

(10)

1 Star

(7)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 193 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 28, 2011

    the centurion's wife

    This story of the early Christians just after Christ's ascension to heaven was uplifting and interesting. However, the story did drag a bit in the middle, but picked up toward the ending. I liked the story because of my interest in the early Church and ancient history. Don't know how historically plausible everything was, but I enjoyed the premise and setting, and the sweet love story between a Roman Gaul and a young Jewish woman. Will definitely read the remaining two books in the series.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Biblical Fiction from one of Christian Fiction's Greats

    When I heard that Janette Oke had a new book coming out, I was beyond thrilled. It's been a long time since we had a new book from her and I was looking highly forward to reading it. I was also excited to see that this book would be another collaboration between her and Davis Bunn. I highly enjoyed the other books the two had written together in the past. This would be the first Biblical fiction novel from Oke, so I was also curious to see what a book from her NOT set in Canada would be like. The book starts out rather slow. It took a while for me to get into the story and I could not relate to the characters at first. It doesn't feel rushed but it seems like the reader doesn't have enough time to get to know the characters well enough. Also I didn't feel like Leah and Alban spent enough time together, especially since the title has the word wife in it. However once you get past all that, the story is absolutely brilliant. Even though the reader knows about Jesus' resurrection, seeing how the characters had to find clues about what really happened was like reading a mystery novel. Leah and Alban did not have religious upbringing so for them to find out the truth and the meaning behind it was a joy to read. I really love biblical fiction and the historical research done for the story is excellent. You really do feel like you are in the time period and can see the setting perfectly. I liked seeing characters from the Bible that we all know given "screen time". I really liked the background stories given to the characters that aren't even given names in the Bible. I know there are some people who don't like Biblical fiction, but I personally enjoy it. I don't feel that it is sacrilegious to give religious characters personalities and imagine what life was like for them. I am going to be looking forward to the next book in the series.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Loved this story!

    When I read a story, especially historical fiction, I want to be transported to another place. The Centurion's Wife does just that. But it's not just a story about Leah, the wife. It is just as much the story of Alban, the Centurion, who was originally from Gaul. He was sent by Pilate to find out more about the "prophet" Jesus, who was crucified, yet continued to influence all of Judea. Pilate was afraid of a Judean revolt, but what he didn't realize was that Jesus had come to live, and died, and then rose again to free mankind from their sins.<BR/><BR/>Alban was sent by Pilate to find out more about the man, Jesus, and at the same time Leah, his niece, was sent by Procula, his wife, to seek that very information. Each step in their search for truth was profoundly beautiful. Jesus influenced lives in ways that was difficult for them to comprehend, but still very real. The more they learned about Jesus, the more drawn they felt toward him. And His teaching was contrary to what they had both been taught their entire lives. I was on this journey with them and rejoiced as each slowly transformed their thinking.<BR/><BR/>The thing that thrilled me about this story was how the reader also needed to examine what to do with the man, Jesus. If he had indeed risen from the dead, what does that mean for them? The Centurion's Wife was engaging and profoundly spiritual. I loved the setting and the way the authors led the reader on a spiritual journey as well. I was deeply moved as the story concluded. This is the kind of story that leaves an impact on your heart and makes you think more about your faith. This book would also make an excellent supplement to a Bible study and would be a fabulous book for book clubs and reading groups to study. I plan to read the rest of this series because if the other stories are this amazing, they are not to be missed!<BR/><BR/>This book is definitely going on my favorite fiction list for 2009.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2011

    a winner!

    I loved this book and highly recommend it to anyone who loves historical fiction.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2012

    Recommend

    I liked the book. Very good story. A little long in middle but other than that a good read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2012

    Excellent read

    Excellent read

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2011

    The Centurion's Wife

    I enjoyed this book imensely on several levels: I enjoy history and historical fiction, I'm a Roman Catholic, and I have also been to Rome. My only real criticisms of the book are the number of typographical errors and the repeated use of the word 'legionnaires' to describe Roman soldiers. The proper term is 'legionaries.' I found myself wanting to know more about Procula, especially since she was patrician by birth, being a Claudian; and how much real influence did she have over Pilate either as his wife and/or a patrician?

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2013

    The Centurion's Wife

    The attention to detail in following the Bible was really good. What I did not like about it was it focused on the political size of the story. Another thing was there was a lot of dialog. There was a lot of dialog that went over the same information over and over. Honestly I was lost a lot and not sure of how much I actually read. I was really expecting more out of this book. I liked the idea but not so much on the exacusion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 3, 2012

    A Great Historical Love Story

    This book was excellent! 300 pages of a story set at the time if Christ's crucifixion, Leah and Antol find not only love for each other, but also become Christians, following the path God will send them on. The fact that the book was part historical and part fiction made it even better. Made u feel like u were really there with them during this time of the birth of Christianity. I was sad when the book ended. These authors did a great job. I recommend this book to everyone. U won't be disappointed. Vallie

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2012

    Like

    I just loved this book the charecters may not be real like in the bible but it is still very in teristing
    € leah is very nervouse because she has to marry a man she berely knows but as they come across each other and get to know one another better...............

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2012

    I loved it! Although some characters are fictional it re inspired my faith.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2012

    Luv it

    This book was a winner ( i knew it) i could tell just from the title. Its about the time of when peter and other disciples roamed the earth.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2012

    Awesome

    I absolutely LOVED this book. I loved how the author mixed historical fact and fiction. I can't wait to read more books from this author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2011

    The Centurion's Wife

    Amazing book! Highly recomend to everyone

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    Very good!

    This is a great book with a very strong female lead. A great book about faith. I can't wait to read the next in series!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 21, 2011

    Excellent premise, good read

    I enjoyed the story. It dealt with a period not often discussed in Christian fiction. The love story was perfectly muted, while the search for faith was highlighted. This story didn't try to go too far and over explain faith but faith was present thoughout. I have recommended this book to friends and will be looking for more by this author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2009

    The title caught my eye and then the time period it was about was what really got my attention

    I found it very interesting, as it all happened in just a short period of time around the time Christ was crucified. It helped me to understand some of the customs of the time also. I saw that it is numbered Number 1 so I am anxious to see what title 2 will be about.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2009

    Great book!

    This book took an interesting spin on what the early believers faced after Jesus' death. It expands one's view of the biblical account by showing the reader how Rome was affected by all of the events. Great story and romance. ; )

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A fresh perspective on history...

    I love the idea of a book being written about non-Christians finding Christ during the period of Jesus' death, resurrection and ascension without ever actually meeting Jesus. Here we have Leah and Alban who are separately trying to find out what actually happened to the man named Jesus' body when it was "stolen" from the tomb and if his followers are a threat to Rome. We follow them separately on their journeys for truth knowing that they have been promised to wed each other after the truth is found. Leah is not happy about this and Alban initially just sees Leah as a means to a higher status in life. Can they find the truth before those seeking to hide it get them out of the way? What will the truth mean to them? Can a life without love really be worth living? The Centurion's Wife answers all of this and much more in a beautiful story and a fantastic setting. I really enjoyed this book and fans of historical fiction (especially like Francine River's Mark of the Lion series) will love this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 21, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    fiction fans will relish this deep look at first century Judea

    In AD 33 in Caesarea Judea Province, Pontius Pilate cuts a deal with ambitious Centurion Alban, commander of the garrison near Galilee. Part of the arrangement is to have Alban marry his Jewess niece Leah. More a servant than a relative as her uncle hides their blood connection since her father disgraced the family name, Leah does not want to wed someone she has never met.<BR/><BR/>Angry, hurt and desperate, Leah asks her mistress, Pilate¿s wife Mistress Procula for help in preventing the deal. However, Procula has her own issues as she cannot sleep having recently suffered from nightmares re Jesus of Nazareth. Fearing for her Pilate and needing sleep, Instead Procula sends Leah undercover amidst Jesus¿ disciples to learn what they and others plan as a recent assassination of a rabbi has caused open anger among the Jews. However, as she befriends Mary Magdalene and the others has Leah believing there can be peace and hope on earth, but she fears she sill is in the dark because she will betray either her mistress or her friends and adding to her doubts is that she knows someone plans to kill Alban<BR/><BR/>The first Acts of Faith ancient biblical historical tale brings to vivid life Judea at a time when Jesus is crucified and resurrected. The exciting insightful story line focuses on Leah who learns to love and believe while she and her intended try to prevent an armed revolt that will leave many dead. Biblical fiction fans will relish this deep look at first century Judea as a time when religion, politics, and the military converge like no other time since.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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