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Harvest of Rubies (Harvest of Rubies #1) by Tessa Afshar: A Book Review

Harvest of Rubies (Harvest of Rubies #1)
Author: Tessa Afshar
Genre: Historical Fiction, Christian, Biblical Fiction
Publisher: River North
Release Date: 2012
Pages: 373
Source: My State Public Library

Synopsis: The prophet Nehemiah's cousin can speak numerous languages, keep complex accounts, write on rolls of parchment and tablets of clay, and solve great mysteries. There is only one problem: she's a woman in a man's court.

    In her early childhood years, Sarah experienced the death of her mother and her father's subsequent emotional distance, and she came to two conclusions: God does not care about me, and my accomplishments are the measure of my worth.

     Catapulted into the center of the Persian court, Sarah is working too many hours, rubbing elbows with royalty, and solving intrigues for the Queen. Ironically, it isn't failure—but success—that causes Sarah to lose her only source of external validation.

     Sarah soon learns that she has something of worth to offer beyond her ability with languages and sums; her very being proves to be a blessing to others, particularly the aristocrat Darius, whom she is given to in marriage.

      Sarah and Darius' story continues in Harvest of Gold. Darius may be able to learn to love his wife, but can he ever learn to trust Sarah and her Lord?

     My Review: Harvest of Rubies tells the story of the Prophet Nehemiah’s cousin. Sarah is gifted with reading and writing. Her accomplishments lead her to become the queen of Persia’s scribe. When her skills save the queen, the queen rewards her with a princely husband. However, Sarah has publicly humiliated her husband which causes him to have a grudge against her. Could Sarah grow to care and love for her husband?

     Sarah was a fun character. She was very relatable. I loved her sense of humor. She was also very intelligent and tomboyish. I also loved her willingness to care for others. Her kindness leads her to be admired by others. Therefore, Sarah was a very enjoyable character. I could not wait for her to have her own happy ending. Thus, Sarah was a very unconventional woman who defied societal expectations of Persian royalty.

     Overall, this novel is about belonging, change, and healing. The message of this book is to trust in God. All the characters seemed very realistic and were likable. My favorite aspect of this novel was Sarah's friendship with the queen of Persia. The queen cared about Sarah which is why she found a suitable husband for her. I also liked Sarah’s relationship with her husband, Darius. While her romance was not as sweet as ones in Mrs. Afshar’s other novels, I realized that it may grow stronger in the sequel, Harvest of Gold. Therefore, I cannot wait to read the sequel so that there will be a more satisfying romance! There were times in which the novel seemed very slow. Nevertheless, Harvest of Rubies is steeped with meticulous historical details of the Babylonian empire. Harvest of Rubies is a light romance with a dash of mystery that will leave readers hungry for more! I recommend this for fans of Tracy L. Higley, Diana Wallis Taylor, and Angela Elwell Hunt!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Here is the official book trailer for Harvest of Rubies:


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