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First Light (A. D. Chronicles Series #1)

First Light (A. D. Chronicles Series #1)

4.6 18
by Bodie Thoene, Brock Thoene

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Winner, 2004 Logos Bookstore Award for Fiction

Go back in time to first-century Jerusalem. It's a dark time in the world's holiest and most turbulent city. Walk with Peniel, the blind beggar who longs for rescue from his suffering. Peek into the lives of Susannah and Manaen, two lovers separated by overwhelming odds. And meet an unusual healer, who ignites a


Winner, 2004 Logos Bookstore Award for Fiction

Go back in time to first-century Jerusalem. It's a dark time in the world's holiest and most turbulent city. Walk with Peniel, the blind beggar who longs for rescue from his suffering. Peek into the lives of Susannah and Manaen, two lovers separated by overwhelming odds. And meet an unusual healer, who ignites a spark of controversy in the fire of hatred, deceit, and betrayal that is always burning in this ancient city. This first book in the A.D. Chronicles series will bring you face-to-face with the man called Yeshua.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Although Jerusalem's Hope, book six in the Zion Legacy series with Viking, was supposedly the conclusion, this new offering from Tyndale picks up the same basic story line and many familiar characters. It's now 2002, and Moshe Sachar takes his youngest son, Shimon, through a secret passage to an underground library chamber. There, Shimon is shown a cache of 70 scrolls and told to begin studying the fourth (other scrolls were the premise of earlier books in the series). The words of the document begin, "Those who lived in darkness have seen a great light..." Several pages later, the novel's time period changes to that of the document-New Testament times-where the story revolves around a young blind beggar named Peniel. Other familiar characters from the earlier series, including Zadok, Miryam, Nakdimon and Marcus Longinus, make appearances throughout. The text, which is a retelling of New Testament events and history at the time of Christ, is heavily padded (Peniel is repeatedly visited by Old Testament characters, and their stories retold), and the pacing drags. Although the Thoenes are veterans of historical fiction, this plot sags under the weight of choppy dialogue and one-dimensional characters. CBA readers may recoil at some fairly gruesome incidents, as when Susanna bat Maccabee carries what she believes is her lover's heart around with her in a jar, or when another character is viciously blinded with a hot dagger. While hardcore Thoene fans will add this to their collections, many readers' patience will be sorely tested by this too-long rehash of scriptural stories. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher

"Sean Barrett depicts multiple emotions—especially fear, passion, and excitement—in a wide array of characters. The story begins in modern-day Israel and then moves to Palestine during the time of the New Testament. The harrowing story of Peniel, a beggar blind from birth, is fraught with excitement as he yearns for the Messiah to come and bring peace. Suspense and romance also play a part in this wonderful story, the first of 10 in the A.D. Chronicles series. Barrett adds just the right touches of drama to keep one glued to one’s earphones."
N.L.  Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award - © AudioFile Portland, Maine

Product Details

Tyndale House Publishers
Publication date:
A. D. Chronicles Series , #1
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.40(d)

Meet the Author

Bodie and Brock Thoene (pronounced Tay-nee) have written over 45 works of historical fiction.  That these best sellers have sold more than 10 million copies and won eight ECPA Gold Medallion Awards affirms what millions of readers have already discovered - the Thoenes are not only master stylists, but experts at capturing readers' minds and hearts.  Bodie and Brock have four grown children - Rachel, Jake, Luke, and Ellie - and five grandchildren.  Bodie and Brock divide their time between London and Nevada.

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First Light 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you love historical fiction you will love these writers. They are wonderful. In this book they make biblical history come to life in a way I have never read before. It is an exceptional book and I can not wait to read the next installment in the series.
Novel_Teen_Book_Reviews More than 1 year ago
As Rome rules ruthlessly, the people of Jerusalem wonder if Messiah will ever come. Susanna and Manaen wish to marry, but Herod Antipas has forbidden they be together. While Susanna resists being married to a wicked man, Manaen searches for a way he and Susanna can be together. There are two other stories in this novel, that of centurion Marcus and Peniel, the blind beggar boy. First Light was an intriguing look at life during the time of Jesus. Yeshua of Nazareth was even a minor character in this book. I liked how the authors intertwined all three stories into one, though Marcus' story felt a bit incomplete. Perhaps his story continues in one of the next books in the series? Jerusalem-or Yerushalayim, as the Jewish characters pronounced it-was fascinating. I really admired the research the Thoenes' must have done to write such a gripping and accurate storyworld. I highly recommend this book for readers looking for a story of love, trust, and history all rolled into one.
clemmy More than 1 year ago
The Thoenes are wonderful writers, and this book is a testament to that. This book brought the world that Jesus came into alive. The Bible tends to be vague and not very descriptive, but this was fabulous. I couldn't stop reading it. They put names and pasts to people that Jesus healed, changed, or simply affected by being alive. I have to admit I cried quite a bit in this book, but still, I loved it completely. All the characters matter. My favorite was Marcus the Centurion. He was without a Jewish background and saw his need for the Messiah. I thought his conversation with Caligula was very telling of the world they lived in, a world where people killed anyone who was in the way. Peniel and Manaen are Jewish and battle physical issues. Zadok and his adopted boys demonstrate the hope that people who were not beaten down by the Roman control had. This book really shows why John the Apostle thought that Jesus would return within his lifetime. It was terrible, but at the same time, the Light of the World was with them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I CANNOT wait to read the rest of the series!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is an amazing book. I can relate so much to the book. It tells history in a new light.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First Light was simply amazing. The story of Peniel, Marcus and Manean was gripping. I got so into their stories i felt for them. The THOENE'S are some of the greatest writers ever!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing. Travel back in time to the most important period in histroy. You will discover amazing truths and be blown away by the things you will learn. Unforgettable characters and beautiful scenes will transport you to a time long gone but whose truths still ring loudly today! This book is a MUST read! Kerrin
Guest More than 1 year ago
Be transported into the first century Jerusalem life. This time period and all its wonder and corruption is shown through the life of a beggar, an aristocrat, a shepherd, and more. Meet corrupt jews working for the Romans, and meet Romans who are seeking something more out of life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Excellent. Hopefully they release another book in this series! The book follows the lives of totally different individuals living in Jesus's time. Revealing how each sector of society lived and related to Jesus, this book takes us down to the steps of the Temple with the blind beggar. This is also a great devotional, calling our own faith under the microscope. A must read for every person who wants to learn more about the Bible.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First Light is another masterpiece from the Thoenes'. The descriptions of the peroid, places and people make you feel like your there. Explore the peroid and meet Yeshua, experience his ministry first hand. I can hardly wait for Volume 2 in the series.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In the first century, Jews flock to Yerushalyim to celebrate the Passover at a time when Roman legions dominate the landscape. The Jews question their faith and their God as the invaders slaughter innocents with the help of the local religious priests. Even though they feel abandoned by God and are beginning to believe that evil will inherit the earth, still they come until the latest genocide leaves many dead.

In this unholy period of doubt, disaster, and foreign rule, blind teen beggar Peniel still believes in his God and that the Messiah is coming. No one welcomes Peniel; even his parents shun him because they blame him for the death of his brother. Most people feel Peniel or his parents sinned leading to his sightlessness. Still being a pariah does not stop Peniel from his search for the light of the Messiah with Yeshua the healer his prime candidate.

This is an entertaining but serious look at the first century during a time when the Jewish people are religiously in disarray. More people feel God abandoned his Chosen ones than those like the hero who expect the Messiah to arrive any moment. Though cramming too much in one novel, as there are other stars of subplots that do not tie together except through their dealings with the messianic healer Yeshua, readers will enjoy this engaging insightful first century tale.

Harriet Klausner

quiltlady0000 More than 1 year ago
When will these books/series be made into a Nook book???
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Glad to know how it could have happened.
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