The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I could either hate this book or like it depending on how I approach it. If I think of it from a biblical perspective I hated it, if I see it from a fictional story of life at that time I like it.
The part that I had a difficult time with was how the family of Jacob, son if Isaac and Rebecca, grandson of Abraham and Sarah, saw God as just another god, more powerful and foreboding than their other gods; and they kept idols and paid homage to these other gods. I guess this is true to the big picture of what happens in the bible...God rescues his people, they worship him, time passes, they forget His wonders, turn back to their old ways, fall into despair, and God rescues them again. So it really isn't that big of a stretch that the wives would have kept and worshiped the idols of their family.
If I see it as a complete work of fiction depicting life during that time, it is a wonderfully woven tapestry of the bonds between women, of coming of age, love, loss, and finding purpose and happiness. A story that celebrates the beauty of womanhood, and our ability to create and sustain life. I loved how the tale came full circle in the end bringing closure to the life of Dinah, daughter of Jacob.
I am not sure if I would recommend this book or not, but if you choose to read it, know that it is a work of historical fiction, where an author took many creative liberties to paint a picture of life during the time of the sons of Jacob.
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