Thursday, December 24, 2020

TO DWELL AMONG CEDARS by Connilyn Cossette, Reviewed by Kim and Winnie

Connilyn Cossette is a master storyteller when it comes to Biblical fiction. Her stellar writing immediately draws you into her stories and makes you feel as if you are actually there. Her characters are always so real and likable, flaws and all, and you can’t help but root for them the entire time you are reading their story.

I immediately loved Eliora and the way she cared for her younger brother, Natan, and the rest of her family. I felt so bad for her as she struggled to believe her adopted Levite family had truly grafted her into their hearts. Ronen was also very likable and I was sympathetic to him being torn between his family and what they expected of him and Eliora and her family. My only issue with this story was that I felt like it was a bit slow in some parts.

The next story in this duology is about Natan. I’m really looking forward to seeing how his story plays out. If you are a fan of Biblical fiction, you really need to read Connilyn Cossette’s stories.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book. Strong faith thread.

Connilyn Cossette has a unique talent for making Biblical fiction come alive on the page. I don’t usually read many books in this genre, but since I discovered her last series, Cities of Refuge, I’m hooked on her stories. I’m always amazed at how she can take a small slice of history from so long ago and create fascinating tales around it. To Dwell Among Cedars is such a book, and I was totally hooked from the first page. Eliora and Ronen are realistically flawed and engaging main characters, and I enjoyed seeing their spiritual growth and their relationship evolve. A stellar and imaginative cast of supporting characters, including Eliora’s younger brother Natan, and a captivating storyline made this book a fascinating read.

Cossette’s impeccable historical details show evidence of her extensive research into Biblical times and people and gives authenticity to her story. Sweet messages of faith, hope, and the importance of a loving family add a layer of dimension and depth to it.

I’m looking forward to reading Natan's (Lukio) story in the next book of the series. (The Covenant House Series) There is a bit of a cliffhanger at the end of the book in regard to him, but it sets him up for his story to come.
*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Bethany House and NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

BackCover Blurb:
Eight years ago, when the Philistines stole and then surrendered the ark of the covenant back to the Israelites, Eliora left her Philistine homeland to follow the ark to the community of Kiryat Yearim. There, the family she was adopted into has guarded the ark at the top of a mountain in seclusion. 

Ronen is a Levite musician determined to secret away the ark to a more fitting resting place, watched over by priests who would restore the Holy of Holies. He never expected that the Philistine girl he rescued years ago would now be part of the very family he's tasked to deceive.

As Ronen's attempts to charm Eliora lead them in unexpected directions, betrayal leaves Eliora with strained family ties and Ronen questioning his own loyalties. Ultimately, Eliora and Ronen are caught up in the battle for the soul of Israel and its future under the leadership of Samuel, the last judge before the era of the kings begins.

Bethany House Publishers, December, 2020
Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover and audiobook:

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