Daughter of Jerusalem: A Novel

( 12 )

Overview

In Daughter of Jerusalem, readers will quickly identify with Mary Magdalene ? a woman of deep faith who used her wealth and influence to serve Jesus.
This fictionalized story of Mary Magdalene is, in the truest sense of the word, an inspirational novel for modern people who are looking to renew in themselves the message of Christ. It?s the greatest story ever lived, told by one of the most famous women who ever lived, and it?s a page-turner. Joan Wolf?s years of success as a ...

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Daughter of Jerusalem: A Novel

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Overview

In Daughter of Jerusalem, readers will quickly identify with Mary Magdalene – a woman of deep faith who used her wealth and influence to serve Jesus.
This fictionalized story of Mary Magdalene is, in the truest sense of the word, an inspirational novel for modern people who are looking to renew in themselves the message of Christ. It’s the greatest story ever lived, told by one of the most famous women who ever lived, and it’s a page-turner. Joan Wolf’s years of success as a novelist enable her to combine storytelling and a faith plot in this beautifully written biblical fiction.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Wolf, who retold the biblical stories of Rahab in The Scarlet Cord and Esther in The Reluctant Queen, now re-examines the life of Mary Magdalene. Here, readers see not the harsh prostitute of biblical lore but a much more complex Mary Magdalene; a kind, intelligent woman sold into a marriage she does not want. Wolf takes us through Mary's story to her first life-changing meeting with Jesus. VERDICT As Tosca Lee did with Judas in Iscariot, the author offers a more sympathetic portrait of a larger-than-life New Testament figure, making her more human, more innocent, more a victim of circumstance. A sure bet for fans of Jill Eileen Smith's "Wives of the Patriarch" series.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781936034673
  • Publisher: Worthy Publishing
  • Publication date: 4/16/2013
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 297,325
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Joan Wolf has lived most of her adult life with her husband in Milford, Connecticut, where she raised two children and an assortment of horses, dogs and cats. Along the way she also managed to write forty-six published novels, the writing of which profoundly enriched her life.

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Read an Excerpt

Daughter of Jerusalem


By Joan Wolf

WORTHY PUBLISHING

Copyright © 2013 Joan Wolf
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-61795-174-9


CHAPTER 1

It was deep August when my father and I made the journey from my old home in Bethany to what was to be my new home in Magdala. We traveled with a party of friends from Jerusalem going to visit family in Galilee, and we joined up with other groups in Jericho because it wasn't safe to travel the route along the Jordan if you weren't with a large caravan.

Papa was taking me to live with my mother's sister, my aunt Leah, because I did not get on with my stepmother. He had married Judith shortly after my mother died, when I was three. She was never nice to me. As I grew older, I learned to stand up for myself. We disliked each other intensely and made no attempt to hide our feelings.

A neighbor once told me that Judith was jealous of me. Instinctively, I knew that to be true. On the surface, Judith had the authority in the house, but I always felt that I had more power because I was better than she was. I wasn't petty minded, and people liked me. My little half brother, Lazarus, and half sister, Martha, loved me more than they loved their own mother. But Judith had brought several highly profitable olive groves to Papa when they married, so he always took her side.

When I was ten, and the confrontations between us were growing worse, my father decided to send me to live with Aunt Leah. He told me it was for Aunt Leah's sake; her husband had died, and she had no children of her own. I would be a comfort to her, he said. My mother would have wanted me to go.

I knew the real reason behind my banishment was that he was tired of having to listen to Judith's complaints. He saw an opportunity for peace in his house, and he was going to take it.

It's not that I didn't love my Aunt Leah. She lived with her husband and his brothers in a house on the Sea of Galilee, and she always stayed with us in Bethany when she came to Jerusalem for the holy days. She was my mother's only sister, and there had always been a special bond between us. If my aunt had lived in Bethany or anywhere close by, I would have been thrilled to make my home with her. But I could not feel happy about being sent to Galilee.

Judeans believed Galilee was a barbarian place. All my life I had heard that Galileans weren't strict Jews, the way we were in Judea. They were lax in their practices, unclean in their table manners, and poorly educated. None of the great Temple scholars came from Galilee. Nobody of any importance had ever come from Galilee. I couldn't understand how my father, who had often said these things himself, would want me to live in such an uncivilized province.

When I told him this, my father got the hard expression on his face that meant he wasn't going to change his mind. So Judith packed my belongings, and my father and I left Bethany, the only home I had ever known, to make the long, hot walk north to Magdala in Galilee. Lazarus and Martha cried and clung to me when I left, making me feel even worse, and I was thoroughly miserable as we joined the group of people who were to be our companions on the road.

The trip north wasn't as horrible as I feared. The farther we walked, the lovelier the landscape became. In August, Bethany was hot and brown and dry; Galilee, in contrast, seemed cool and lush. Dark evergreen forest covered the hillsides, and the sheep looked fat and healthy in their lush pastures. The wheat had been harvested, but everywhere figs hung ripe on trees, and we could see men at work harvesting dates.

After two days of walking we arrived at the southernmost tip of the Sea of Galilee. The sun was setting as we came into the village, and the lake waters reflected back the streaky gold colors of the sky. The hills on the western side of the sea rose like shadow guardians out of the sunset. It was the most beautiful sight I had ever seen.

One of the men in our party saw my face and chuckled. "It's nice, isn't it?"

"I never saw so much water!"

The man laughed. "One day perhaps you will visit the Great Sea, where you can sail for days and never see land. Then you will understand just how tiny this so-called Sea of Galilee is."

One of the men traveling with us was from Capernaum, another city on the lake, and he was quick to defend his native province. "You have nothing nearly as beautiful in Judea. The Dead Sea is ugly, and nothing can live in it. Our lake teems with fish. You can't get fish like ours anywhere in Judea."

The Judean exploded into a defense of his province, but I stopped listening to the squabble. Instead I stood quietly, looking at the beauty that lay stretched out before me, praying in my heart that God would let me find happiness in this new place.


* * *

It was too late to go on to Magdala, so my father and I spent the night at one of the inns that served travelers and merchants along the well-traveled route. We set forth early the next morning, taking the road that ran along the west side of the lake. The first town we came to was Tiberias, a new city that was still being built by Herod Antipas, the ruler of Galilee.

I was hungry, but we didn't stop. My father told me Tiberias was a Roman city and that no good Jew would sully the soles of his sandals by stopping near it.

"It's almost as bad as Sepphoris," my father said with disgust, as he marched me along, determined to put the polluted city behind us as quickly as possible.

"What's Sepphoris?" I asked, skipping along beside him.

My father spat, something he rarely did. Then he told me that Sepphoris, the capital of Galilee, was a den of sin. It had been built by Herod the Great using Greek architects and was the seat of the Roman occupation in Galilee. Herod Antipas, my father said, his voice dripping with scorn, was as in love with the Greeks and Romans as his father had been.

It was early afternoon when we arrived in Magdala. As the first houses started to appear, I noticed that most of them were built of a light-colored stone, not the mud bricks we used in Bethany. It was very pretty.

"There is the house," my father said, and I stared in amazement. Built of stone, it was situated directly on the lakeshore. And it was huge! It had two stories, supported by a series of stone arches. Gardens stretched out on either side, and the roof was tile, not the packed clay I was used to.

The people who live here must be very rich, I thought. My father was considered a well-to-do man in Bethany, but our house was tiny compared to this.

I felt my chest growing tight with anxiety as my father opened the gate that gave onto a path to the front door. Close up, the house looked even more enormous, sprawling over a huge plot of land, with outbuildings and an orchard of date palms and fig trees.

"Papa," I whispered, as I trailed behind him, "are you certain this is the right place? This house is so big!"

He didn't appear overwhelmed. "Benjamin has obviously done well with his business."

He kept going, and I followed reluctantly, forcing one foot to move after the other. I was frightened and had a dreadful feeling I might cry. I never cried, and I was proud of that distinction. No matter what Judith said, no matter how many times my father locked me up in my room, I never cried. I would not start now.

But the outlines of the huge house had become suspiciously blurry. I ground my teeth together to gain control.

The gate banged behind us, and someone called out my father's name. We stopped and waited while a well-dressed boy came down the path toward us. He addressed my father politely: "You must be Jacob bar Solomon. Welcome to our house, sir. I am Daniel, Benjamin's youngest son."

My father smiled and reached out to embrace the boy. "I thank you, Daniel bar Benjamin," he replied, turning the full strength of his charm on the boy. My father was a very handsome man, with thick black hair only beginning to turn gray, dark brown eyes, and imperious black eyebrows. People often joked that there was no way he could deny my paternity, I looked so much like him. I was never quite sure I liked the comparison. Certainly I had his hair and eyebrows, but my nose did not jut out like his, and my cheekbones were high and thin, not broad and solid.

Lately I had taken to stealing peeks at myself in Judith's polished bronze hand mirror, and I had been pleased with what I saw. Judith caught me once and called me ugly names, and I lost my temper and told her she looked like a cow. That was when my father made the decision to send me to live with Aunt Leah.

My father introduced me to Daniel, and we stood, silent in the sunlight, looking at each other. He was the handsomest boy I had ever seen, with clean, dark brown hair and reddish brown eyes. We knew immediately that we would like each other.

"Welcome to our house, Mary," he said and smiled. Daniel had a wonderful smile; it lit up his thin, boyish face and made me feel that I truly was welcome here.

"Come into the house with me," he said, glancing back at my father and then again at me. "I'll find Leah and my mother to greet you."


* * *

My aunt was waiting just inside the front door. And I ran into her outstretched arms. They closed around me tightly. "Mary," she said, her lips pressed against the top of my head, "I'm so glad you have come to me."

I was glad too. Daniel's smile and Leah's welcome had washed away the tears that had threatened on the path, and my old confidence came rushing back. My father said, "You have contributed greatly to the peace of my household, Leah, by having Mary live with you. I thank you with all my heart."

"We are happy to have her," another voice said, and I lifted my face from my aunt's shoulder to greet Daniel's mother, Esther, the matriarch of the family.

Her eyes were the same color as Daniel's, and she looked at me for a long moment before she said, "I hope you are used to working, Mary. In this family, everyone has responsibilities."

I bowed my head respectfully and assured her I would happily do whatever she might ask. I felt Aunt Leah take my hand and squeeze it, and I squeezed hers back.

Suddenly I was glad to be here in Magdala, in this house set on the beautiful Sea of Galilee, where Daniel lived.

CHAPTER 2

It didn't take long for me to learn that fitting into a large, new family wasn't going to be so easy. The head of the household and the family business was Benjamin, Daniel's father; next in authority after Benjamin was his younger brother, Joses. Counting from Benjamin down to the youngest baby, the household numbered thirty-two people in all. For a girl from a small family of five, it was overwhelming.

Aunt Leah had been married to Benjamin's other brother, Isaac. When Isaac died, Leah, having no other place to go, remained with her relatives by marriage. That's why she had been so happy when my father asked her to let me come live with her. I was someone of her own blood.

She was so sweet and gentle that I often thought my mother must have been like her. I had no memories of my mother, but that didn't stop me from missing her. If she had lived, she would have taken care of me and loved me. If she had lived, I would never have had to deal with Judith.

Esther, Lord Benjamin's wife (we were all supposed to call him Lord to show our respect for his position), put me to work right away. Even though some girls came from the village to help, there was still a lot to be done each day. Just getting enough water for the daily household needs was a huge task, as were milking the goats and making cheese and curds from the gathered milk. The daily bread had to be baked and the food for supper gathered and cooked. Squeezed in between these chores were the ongoing tasks of spinning cloth, making the cloth into garments, and caring for the large vegetable garden.

I tried hard to do everything the way Esther wanted, but I had learned little about housekeeping or cooking from Judith. Nothing I did had pleased her, and she banished me from her kitchen.

Aunt Leah gently tried to show me what to do, but I was miserably homesick for Lazarus and Martha. I would often slip away into the courtyard to play with the young children. It was much more satisfying than trying to carry out tasks that everyone scorned me for doing poorly.

Eventually Esther settled on the jobs most suited to me. I would rise early and prepare the day's bread, do the weeding in the vegetable garden, and help look after the children. I didn't mind doing any of these things and tried to go about my work as quietly and competently as I could.

My biggest misery of the first few months in Magdala came from the girls my age, the daughters of Benjamin and Joses. They all slept together in one of the big upstairs rooms, and none of them was nice to me. Fortunately, I got to sleep in a small room with my Aunt Leah so I didn't have to put up with their snide comments at night, but they kept it up in the daytime. Or they just turned their backs and ignored me. I knew I shouldn't respond, but it was hard to keep a quiet tongue.

I explained this to Daniel one day, when he came home from the synagogue. He saw me in the vegetable garden viciously pulling weeds and came to speak to me. He was the only male in the family who did not work in the family business of salting, packing, and shipping fish. Instead he went into town every day to study with the rabbi. Lord Benjamin's plan for his brilliant youngest son was to send him to Jerusalem when he was sixteen to complete his studies at the Temple and become a scribe.

On this particular afternoon I watched him making his way along the narrow garden paths, and I smiled. He was twelve, two years older than I, tall and slim and elegant looking in his immaculate white linen tunic and cloak of fine blue wool. Its ritual blue tassels swung rhythmically as he strode along.

It was not the first time we had talked together in the garden, and he grinned as he came up to me. "You are certainly attacking those weeds, Mary." He looked around. "Where is Rachel? I thought she was supposed to help you today."

"She said she had a headache and went to lie down." I ripped out another weed and tossed it into my basket.

Rachel was Joses' daughter and my chief tormenter. I thought the rest of the girls might be friendly if not for Rachel's influence. They seemed to be afraid of her.

"Come and sit down," Daniel said, gesturing toward the wooden bench that was nestled in the shade of the house.

I sat next to him, licking the perspiration from my upper lip. I poured a cup of water from the jug I had brought with me and offered it to him. He took a sip and then gave it back to me. I drank thirstily.

"Is Rachel still making life difficult for you?"

I put the cup down on the seat next to me with a loud click. "She hates me. I have tried to be nice to her, Daniel, but she goes out of her way to be mean. And she makes all the other girls act mean too. I don't know what's wrong with her."

"She's jealous of you," Daniel said.

I frowned. "What does she have to be jealous about? She's the granddaughter; I'm only a poor cousin."

"You're prettier," he replied and stretched his legs comfortably in front of him.

"Much good that does me."

He turned his head to look at me. "Before you came, Rachel was the prettiest of the unmarried girls. You've taken her place, and she resents you for it. Give her time, and she'll come around. She's spoiled, that's all."

"I don't care about Rachel," I said with a sniff. I turned my face away so he couldn't see my expression and regarded the sparkling lake that lay beyond the walls of the house. "I just want the other girls to like me. I have to spend so much time with them, and they're either mean or they act like I don't exist." I swallowed. "It's horrible."

Daniel took my hand. "I'm your friend, Mary. Try to remember that when they upset you; you do have a friend in this house. And my sisters and cousins will come around eventually. They're good girls at heart, truly."

I turned back to him. He was so handsome, with his warm red-brown eyes, chiseled nose, and neat ears.

Without thinking, I blurted, "You were lucky you didn't get your father's ears."

He looked startled, and then he burst into laughter. I put my hand over my mouth and stared at him in dismay. "I didn't mean to say that."

"I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I've had the same thought myself." He was breathless with mirth.

Lord Benjamin had huge ears. Sometimes, as we all sat in the courtyard in the evening, I would find myself staring at them. Aunt Leah had once leaned over to remind me that I wasn't being very polite.

"They're enormous," I said now with awe.

"They are, aren't they? My mother once told me large ears were a sign of God's special blessing."

"I never knew that."

Daniel grinned. "She made it up. I'm sure of it."

We both laughed.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Daughter of Jerusalem by Joan Wolf. Copyright © 2013 Joan Wolf. Excerpted by permission of WORTHY PUBLISHING.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 12 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 4, 2013

    Daughter of Jerusalem by Joan Wolf I won Daughter of Jerusal

    Daughter of Jerusalem by Joan Wolf




    I won Daughter of Jerusalem through a Goodreads first reads drawing, and I am so glad I did!  It is a fictionalized account of Mary Magdalene’s life.  Not much is revealed about Mary Magdalene in the Bible, but the author made some judgment calls and ran with it and turned out an AMAZING story!  It was really interesting to learn about the culture in Israel during the time of Christ’s life on Earth.  Also, it was neat to get to know some other biblical personalities through Mary’s eyes.  But most of all, this was such a well-crafted story.  Author Joan Wolf made me feel as if I were experiencing the heart-wrenching disappointments, the temptations, and the joys that Mary went through, myself.  I highly recommend this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 20, 2013

    Ok, my experience with the historical novel has been with the ma

    Ok, my experience with the historical novel has been with the mainstream ones about English history. All I know of Mary Magdalene is from the Bible and Jesus Christ Superstar. So for me this is a new foray. Bit dubious at first, some Christian novels are rather 'in your face' preachy. However...Daughter of Jerusalem surprised me in many ways.

    First the storyline flowed smooth as silk. My preconceptions about Mary Magdalene as a prostitute in this book were unfounded. The book is fiction, and thoroughly enjoyable. As I read certain parts, especially those referring to women during their cycles as 'unclean', well the women's lib side of me wanted to go 'grrrrr' at whoever made that ridiculous rule.

    As the storyline unravelled, I found myself enjoying the setting, and most of all that Mary became stronger and stronger. Establishing her own identity and refusing to be subservient to any man. She stood up for her beliefs and when she met Jesus, knew that he was the Messiah. The Jewish leaders spoke of someone who would save them and in their own mind became blinkered to the events happening around them. They had their own ideals, and refused to believe that God would walk among them in human form. Experiencing for himself the world he had created.



    So, as a conclusion. Please do not judge a book by it's cover. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and have no problem recommending this to friends and family.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 18, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    In this fictionalized story of one of the Bible's most compellin

    In this fictionalized story of one of the Bible's most compelling women, Joan Wolf beautifully recreates the history, romance, and tradition of Mary's world. Daughter of Jerusalem follows Mary's life from her first love through her loveless marriage, to the moment she heard of a miracle worker in her own town -- and ultimately to the moment she saw Him risen from the dead.

    Of all the biblical novels I've read that included the character of Mary Magdalene, I believe Daughter of Jerusalem is my favorite. Joan writes in an easy flowing style that held my attention while moving the story along. The first two sections, which deal with the love of Mary's youth followed by her loveless arranged marriage, are great storytelling. And the third section, which includes many of the people and events of Jesus' ministry as seen through Mary's eyes, I found very inspiring. The story makes the miracles of Jesus come alive.

    Mary Magdalene has been a fascinating character throughout history, and I like how Joan portrays her as adulterous rather than being a prostitute. Betrayed by the men in her life, Mary learned a hard lesson early on: "Never give men any more power over you than they already possessed. . . . I raised unseen walls around me and let nothing or no one come in." She strays away from the innocent faith of her youth - "I still believed in the God of Israel; I just wanted nothing to do with Him" - and her growing faith in the Messiah is a joy to watch.

    The attention to historical and cultural detail is impeccable and adds much interest to the narrative. There were a couple of things I differ in belief on, but even biblical scholars don't agree, so that's okay. The story rises above that and never fails to entertain and inspire.

    The way Mary became a devout follower of Christ, never wavering in her faith and using her considerable wealth to help others, offers both a challenge and example to us today. This is a story that I can easily recommend to all readers, not just to those who enjoy biblical fiction.

    This book was provided by Worthy Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 16, 2013

    his is the story of Mary Magdalene, sister of Lazarus and Martha

    his is the story of Mary Magdalene, sister of Lazarus and Martha.  At 3, her mother died, and her father soon remarried a woman, who didn't like Mary.  At 10, her father took her to live with her mother's sister, in a well to do household, several days away.  She fell in love with a man she couldn't marry, and then was forced to marry a man she could never love.




    This is the kind of book I can't put down, it comes across as written by someone who was there.  When Mary's husband dies, and she is forced to face the fact that she can no longer live in Sepphoris, you can feel her angst. 




    Can you imagine knowing Jesus personally?  Of seeing your brother raised from the dead?  Of being at the cross, when Jesus was crucified?  Of being at the tomb and realizing that Jesus' body was no longer there?




    I keep few books after I review them, but I plan on keeping this one, to read again.




    I was given a copy of this book to read and review, no other compensation was given.  I am not required to give a postitive review.  All opinions expressed here are my own

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2013

    My thoughts: Joan Wolf takes a very intriguing woman from the Bi

    My thoughts:
    Joan Wolf takes a very intriguing woman from the Bible and writes a fictionalized account of her life in such a way that the reader is immediately drawn to Mary Magdalene, rejoicing with her  as she finds love, and mourning with her over love lost. 
    The writing in this book is first person, which, I admit, is never my favorite. But Ms. Wolf has written this in such a way that you really don’t notice the first-person account. You really feel like you’re hearing Mary Magdalene’s story straight from her mouth, and it’s beautiful. And painful. And full of hope, redemption, and forgiveness. 
    I’ve learned many things about Mary’s story through this book. I knew she had been a disciple of Christ, but it never dawned on me that she was truly that involved, and that she and Jesus had a close relationship. Ms. Wolf writes with some liberty as one will never truly know what Jesus said outside of what is recorded, but I do imagine she likely got some things right. ¿
    I highly, highly recommend this book. It’s easy to read, draws you right into the story, and is thoroughly enjoyable. Ms. Wolf has outdone herself!

    *I was given this book for free from Worthy Publishing in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 11, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Mary truly loves God and follows his commands as she¿s shuffled

    Mary truly loves God and follows his commands as she’s shuffled from one family to another never actually being identified as a part of a family until she’s forced to chose. Can God ever forgive her for her sins? Can she ever forgive herself?

    Hott Review:
    While I did not agree with all aspects of this book – like that Mary of Magdalene and Lazareth’s sister were the same person – I found the book to be quite amazing. I was completely drawn into her life and the amazing people and what it must have been like to live during the time of Jesus.

    More…
    Author: Joan Wolf
    Source: Worthy Publishing via Netgalley
    Grade: B+
    Ages: Adult

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  • Posted July 19, 2013

    She was the first person to see her resurrected Savior, a sinner

    She was the first person to see her resurrected Savior, a sinner whom Jesus cleansed of seven demons, and one of the women who followed and supported Jesus and the Twelve Apostles, but who was Mary Magdalene? What was her story? In her latest novel, Daughter of Jerusalem, New York Times bestselling author Joan Wolf puts a story to the person of Mary Magdalene. This first-person tale begins when, at a young age, Mary is sent from her family to live with her aunt and ends after Pentecost.

    This is the first Joan Wolf book that I read and I am so glad I did. The novel is easy to read and utterly engrossing – I didn’t want to put it down. I cried at times while reading of Mary’s hardships and rejoiced in her triumphs. I will definitely be reading more of Joan Wolf’s writings. I’ll also be learning more about the Biblical account of Mary Magdalene. The book has me intrigued and I want to learn more about this important woman.

    I love historical fiction because it weaves well-known historical characters and occurrences into the story. It’s fun to see how the author gives life to the Biblical account by putting names and relationships to people who we know little about from the Bible, such as Fulvius Petrus, an acquaintance of Mary’s that turns out to be the centurion that had the faith to ask Christ to heal his servant from a distance. However, it is important to remember that Daughter of Jerusalem is a work of fiction. The Bible gives us no reason to suppose that Mary participated in many of the events that the author places her at, nor does it give us many details about her life. It also doesn’t explain her political leanings. I found it startling that the author blends Mary Magdalene and Mary of Bethany (the sister of Lazarus and Martha) into a single person. I had always thought that these were two different people, but after reading the book I spent some time researching and discovered that there are some who believe that they may be the same person (though many scholars do not). The author provides a believable explanation of how Mary of Magdala could also be Mary of Bethany and the truth is that we really don’t know.

    This is a fantastic book and a highly recommend it to any Christian. It is a wonderful story, makes some great points, and will cause you to open your Bible and learn more.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Worthy Publishing as part of their Daughter of Jerusalem blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing these things in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

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  • Posted June 17, 2013

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    Joan Wolf in her new book, "Daughter of Jerusalem" pub

    Joan Wolf in her new book, "Daughter of Jerusalem" published by Worthy Publishing takes us back in history to the Israel at the time of Jesus and into the life of Mary Magdalene.

    From the back cover: She was a widow, a businesswoman, an adulteress. In her lifetime, she knew murder, prejudice, and faith. She transformed from a Jewish girl longing for family to one of the closest friends of Jesus of Nazareth -- the Son of God.

    HER NAME WAS MARY MAGDALENE.

    In this fictionalized story of one of the Bible's most compelling women, New York Times best-selling author Joan Wolf beautifully recreates the history, romance, and tradition of Mary's world. Daughter of Jerusalem follows Mary's life from her first love through her loveless marriage, to the moment she heard of a miracle worker in her own town -- and ultimately to the moment she saw Him risen from the dead.

    As this inspiring chronicle reminds us, Mary was the first to witness history's greatest moment. She was a woman who sought forgiveness for her sins, and a follower of God who yearned for a deeper faith. She was Jesus' beloved disciple. Read Mary Magdalene's story and find yourself in this remarkable woman's journey to discover the Kingdom of God.

    The Bible, betrayal, romance, faith,and love. These are the ingredients for "Daughter of Jerusalem". Ms. Wolf took an interesting character from the Bible and has done an admirable work in adapting her to a fiction book. Ms. Wolf has made it much more romantic than the Bible portrays it but that is perfectly fine. "Daughter of Jerusalem" is told in three parts, each covering a different portion of Mary's life. Ms. Wolf does not skimp on detail as she gives life to this fascinating yet mysterious woman. While this book is based on a real-life person from the Bible it is also a work of fiction and that means that some of what is written is totally made up. Where does fact stop and fiction take over? I have no idea. Ms. Wolf has done a great job with these characters and you feel that you are there with them walking along with Jesus.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Wynn-Wynn Media for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted April 29, 2013

    Normally I do not read a lot of biblical fiction, but reading th

    Normally I do not read a lot of biblical fiction, but reading this book made me want to swallow up all the biblical fiction I could find. It was a wonderful read that made the biblical story of Mary Magdalene come to life. While all these events did not necessarily happen to the biblical Mary, this was a great fictional tale of the story of Mary.
    The story opens when Mary is just 10 years old. After having problems at her own home, she is sent to live with her Aunt Leah at the home of Lord Benjamin. Mary must soon find her place in a household of 32 people. While she doesn’t make friends with the girls very quickly, Mary quickly becomes friends with Daniel. Just when they think their lives are going to go in a happy direction, things change.
    When Mary is sold into a loveless marriage, she is terribly disappointed with her life. Feeling as if God has abandoned her, she finds love with another. Eventually, after a series of unfortunate events, she returns to Capernaum. There she meets Jesus and we see her learning to trust in him and rely on his strength and forgiveness.
    I loved seeing the relationship between Jesus and Mary come to life. You can see that Mary greatly admired him and when she finally found a way to forgive herself, she was willing to work hard to follow Jesus and do what she could to help his ministry.
    I enjoyed this book very much but as a warning to other readers, make sure you realize that this is a fictional account of Mary. It may have some of the facts straight, but a lot of this is fiction. If you want to know the real story of Mary, the Bible is where you’ll get the most accurate facts.




    I received a free ecopy of this book from Worthy Publishing through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions stated are my own.

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  • Posted April 18, 2013

    the best one in this series was the first.. the relucant queen..

    the best one in this series was the first.. the relucant queen...it far exceeds the next 2

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  • Posted April 17, 2013

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    DAUGHTER OF JERUSALEM by Joan Wolf is an interesting Christian H

    DAUGHTER OF JERUSALEM by Joan Wolf is an interesting Christian Historical Fiction set in Biblical times. Biblical fiction based on the Biblical character Mary Magdalene. Filled with betrayal,romance, faith,and love. Written in first person with engaging characters and a faith based plot. Mary Magdalene is forced to leave her siblings in Bethany,(Lazarus and Martha), due to her relationship with her step mother. Inspirational story of the life of Mary Magdalene,her struggles,her faith, her strength and how she served Jesus. An interesting and intriguing plot with engaging,interesting characters. I have read other stories of Mary Magdalene and Ms. Wolf's take on her life is a wonderful written story,although,a different version to this Biblical character life,her relationship with Jesus,heartbreak, death, infidelity, and deceit. If you enjoy reading more on Biblical characters,written with faith in mind you will enjoy "Daughter of Jerusalem". Received for an honest review from the publisher.

    RATING: 4

    HEAT RATING: SWEET

    REVIEWED BY: AprilR, My Book Addiction Reviews

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  • Posted April 5, 2013

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    DAUGHTER OF JERUSALEM tells a possible story of what Mary Magda

    DAUGHTER OF JERUSALEM tells a possible story of what Mary Magdalene's life was like from childhood until after Christs' death. The author includes familiar things from the BIBLE as well as create some things of her own. When you're reading you will recognize themes while others appear to be the authors creativity.
    The story begins as Mary's father, due to problems with his current wife, sends her to live with her aunt so that he may have a little peace in his home. Mary and her father walk from Bethany to Magdala to find she is to be living in a much grander home, filled with life and family. All doesn't come easily in the beginning, but she does manage to make a friend with her cousin Daniel. Here the author tells of a love story between Mary and Daniel, which helps to tell the reader of the real subserviant position women were in at that time. You really realize this when Mary is speaking to Leah after she learns she is to be married to a rich man instead.
    With this new marriage you see how women really are chattle in Mary's time and life. Once she gets to her new position, she is changed in more ways than one. She lives in her new home and city, where for the first time in her life she has some freedom. She accidentally runs into a woman at the market and they become fast friends. She learns a different language and has her eyes opened to the world around her. Mary makes choices based on her disappointment in those around her as well as herself, when she sees those in her faith for what they truly are. Mary becomes removed from her faith for a time, not truly returning until she meets Jesus and watches him die.
    To me, I thought the author gave Mary Magdalene some things which other women had done, however the story works out really well. Some things I would have liked to seen more of were images such as the man carrying the cross for Jesus. The author also brings to light the fact that women remained with Jesus while the men disappeared, as well as the fact that not only the men disciples are teaching, but also Jesus' women followers too, something often overlooked today.
    If you like stories from the BIBLE you will like this one. It portrays Mary as a human being, while giving the world a glimpse of what real faith can be like once you finally allow it in your life, but also reminds us that as Christians we have no reason to expect that life will be easy, that bad things will not happen to us. After all, look what happened to Jesus.

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