About the Book
Book: Pearl in the Sand
Author: Tessa Afshar
Release Date: September 1, 2010 and October 6, 2020
Genre: Biblical Romance
Can a Canaanite harlot who made her living enticing men be a fitting wife for a leader of Israel? Shockingly, the Bible’s answer is yes.
This 10th anniversary edition of Pearl in the Sand includes new features that will invite you into the untold story of Rahab’s journey from lowly outcast to redeemed child of God. Rahab’s home is built into a wall, a wall that fortifies and protects the city of Jericho. However, other walls surround her too: walls of fear, rejection, and unworthiness. Years of pain and betrayal have wounded Rahab’s heart—she doubts whether her dreams of experiencing true love will ever come true.
A woman with a wrecked pas and a man of success, of faith … of pride. A marriage only God would conceive! Through the heartaches of a stormy relationship, Rahab and Salmone learn the true source of one another’s worth and find healing in God.
What can one say about Pearl in the Sand by Tessa Afshar? One could say it’s outstanding, superb, and beautiful. And that is 100% true. Pearl in the Sand is an outstanding, superb, and beautiful story. But these adjectives just aren’t enough. This is my second time reading this novel, and I have to say, Pearl in the Sand was even more amazing the second time around. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly loved the book the first time I read it, but this second read blew me away. I guess it’s the place I’m in right now. I first read this book in 2016. Between 2016 and now my life has changed drastically — in some good ways, but mostly in very devastating ways. I believe in God with my whole heart, but this second time reading Pearl in the Sand has illuminated some really deep hurts that I’ve been hiding from Him, and I realize now that I have to give them over. And it is this — this ability for a fictional novel to raise a mirror to me and show me my hurts and sins, and to get me to stop hiding things from God, that makes Pearl in the Sand one of the most amazing novels ever written. I implore everyone to read this story, but go into it knowing that the Spirit is going to move and you will go on an emotional journey that will change, for the better, your relationship with God.
There is so much contained within the pages of this novel that one review is not enough to convey the depth and breadth of this book. But, I will say that one of my favorite aspects to this story is the discussion on changing our perspectives that is weaved throughout the entire narrative. Early in this novel, Afshar illustrates a moment from Joshua, chapter 5. Joshua, the leader of the Israelites after Moses passes, brings the Israelites across the River Jordan to the shores of Jericho. Everyone knows the story of Jericho’s walls falling, but if you’re like me, you may have forgotten that before the Israelites marched around the walls shouting and blasting their shofars, Joshua took a moment to assess the situation. Joshua drew near to the walls and looked up. When he looked up, he saw a Man suddenly standing before him with His sword drawn. Joshua walked up to the man and asked Him if He was a friend or foe. The Man said, “No; but I Am the commander of the army of the Lord. Now I have come” (Joshua 5:14). To clarify, the Man is Jesus and the question Joshua was really asking was, “Are you going to fight with the Israelites or for the Canaanites?” Until the Man told Joshua who He was, Joshua’s perspective of the man was that he was a man, a common soldier. He had no idea he was standing next to THE Commander of God’s armies! But the BEST part of this perspective shift is Jesus’s response to Joshua’s question: “Are you friend or foe?” Jesus says,”NO.” What a startling answer. Jesus is the commander of the Lord’s armies. He doesn’t stand behind us in a fight. He stands before us. The question really is, “Who are you to Jesus? Friend or foe?” Too many times, we humans come at God believing HE is on our side. But doesn’t that actually make us gods trying to control God? In reality, God is God and it is we who need to be on HIS side. We must remember that God is the Boss. It’s when WE go to Him to hide under His pinions (Psalm 91) that we have Salvation, not the other way around.
Pearl in the Sand is filled with many more amazing perspective shifts just like the one illustrated above. There are moments when Salmone’s whole paradigm changes and you just want to cheer. He basically becomes a whole new man! And when Rahab realizes who she truly is in God it is the BEST change in the entire story. Dear reader, you are going to need a BOX of tissue to get through Rahab’s heart transformation. It’s so, so good and quite cathartic. This book is amazing. If you love Biblical Romance, if you love history, if you love excellent storytelling, and/or if you love literature that’s transformative then Pearl in the Sand is definitely the novel for you!
I received a copy of this novel in paperback form from the author, Tessa Afshar, in order to review. I also purchased a copy of this novel in eBook form from Amazon.com on October 5, 2020, in order to review. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.