The Esther Paradigm (2017) is a truly fantastic stand-alone novel by Sarah Monzon. This novel is set to release on November 2, 2017 through Radiant Publications. This novel will come in all forms including eBook, and is 362 pages in length. With a full-time job and a precocious five-year old daughter, this story took me two days to read. I received a free eBook copy of this novel from the author. In no way has this influenced my opinion of the story. All opinions expressed in this review are mine. I give this novel 5+ STARS. This story is a Contemporary Christian Romance that re-envisions the Esther story from the Bible.
About the Book
Hannah Pratt dreams of starting a school for the Bedouin clan she grew up with as a missionary kid, and finally her hopes are coming true. But shortly after she returns to the desert from her college years in the U.S., she discovers her parents have received threats from their Muslim neighbors. As the danger escalates, Hannah finds she’s in the middle of a battle no one seems to understand. She must decide to what lengths she’ll go to stay faithful to the mission to which God has called her. Even if it costs her everything.
As Sheikh, Karim Al-Amir feels the weight of responsibility as the leader of his people. When a mysterious illness ravishes the clan’s flocks and threatens to destroy their centuries-old way of life, locals believe the American doctors and their daughter, his childhood friend, Hannah, are to blame. Karim must do something to keep them safe—even if the only solution can be found within marriage vows.
In a society where the line is drawn between us and them, Christianity is outlawed, and foreigners are mistrusted, will their union heal wounds or inflict the final fatal blow?
Esther is one of my most favorite books in the Bible. I absolutely love the courage and bravery that Esther illustrates when she chooses to sacrifice her wants for her peoples’ safety. I love how God is present throughout the entire story, yet His Name is never mentioned once. Finding Him throughout the story is one of my favorite ways to read the book. And, I especially love how Esther symbolically illustrates the Bride of Christ. It is a book in the Bible that I come back to again and again. When asked to join Ms. Monzon’s book launch team and read The Esther Paradigm — a modern-day retelling of Esther — I jumped at the opportunity, and boy am I glad that I did. This book is amazing!!!
This novel is so captivating! I was hooked from page one and had a very hard time putting this book down. Monzon does an excellent job of creating unique and authentic characters who are their own people, but who also exhibit a blend of qualities from the various figures in the Biblical Esther story. The setting is described perfectly in this story, so much so that the landscape becomes a character in and of itself. The romance in this novel is so sweet and pure that the reader cannot help but cheer for Hannah and her Sheikh. And, this book illustrates life as a Christian missionary in a foreign country in a way that evoked a roller coaster of emotions. At times, I was so encouraged by Hannah’s family’s courage and bravery. I admired how sure they are of the path God put them on. And, there were some definite moments of fear as they took abuse by the foreign culture they had come to love so much. Truly, there is a new, fascinating character, cultural issue, or action taking place on every single page of this story. You cannot get bored reading this wonderful book.
My most favorite aspect to this novel is the importance supernatural dreams play in the conversion stories of many of the Muslim characters in this book. There are countless stories reported today from the Middle East that tell of men, women, and children coming to Jesus because of dreams where He has appeared and called them to Him. Ms. Monzon uses this supernatural phenomenon in her novel very well, and it really left the biggest impact on me. It is very easy in this day and age in America to give up, to raise a fist in anger at God for letting so many bad things happen, or to believe that God has given up on His people here on earth. BUT, stories of people coming to Jesus in some of the scariest parts of the world because of supernatural dreams of Jesus remind me that God is as present today as He ever was in the past. We are currently living in an Esther time — God’s Name, God’s commands, God’s morality seem to have disappeared for the most part, but He is absolutely alive and present in every facet of the world’s happenings. The Esther Paradigm reminded me that God is present in the big things, the small things, the mundane things, etc. I just need to look up!!!
The Esther Paradigm is a really excellent read, and I cannot recommend it enough! I love the unique way Ms. Monzon has weaved the Biblical Esther into her story. I found this book to be a very sweet romance with some fantastic swoon-worthy moments. This story is also action packed, and leaves the reader to reevaluate his/her role as a Christian in this rough world. This story has made me fall even deeper in love with Jesus because it reminded me of the amazing work He is still doing in this world today. In November when this novel is released, buy it! You will not be disappointed that you did!