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Publishers WeeklyGrandmother 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.
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