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The Prophetess ~ Review

The Prophetess: Deborah's Story
Daughters of the Promised Land #2
By Jill Eileen Smith

In a time where woman were viewed as little more than possessions, Deborah is given a vision from God.  Her vision is a warning to the nation of Israel to forsake the idols that they have taken into their homes, into their hearts.  But who would listen to the warnings of a mere woman?

The land is ravaged by the might of Canaan.  The people not killed or enslaved have been broken and have taken to hiding within their own lands.  A champion is needed who will unite and lead the people to victory, but without the favor of God they have little chance of succeeding.  But God has spoken and the idolatry must be driven from the land.

Based upon the verses that can be found in Judges 4 and 5 we are introduced to Deborah a young woman who becomes known as a judge of Israel.  This is the story of a nation who turns against her God, becoming yet again unfaithful.

We also get to know the man chosen by God to lead His people to victory against the Canaanites. But Barak's own doubts and fears resulted in the true victory against Sisera coming from the hand of a lowly woman.

This is an interesting fictionalized accounting of the life and times of Deborah.  In a culture in which women were seldom acknowledged God yet again brings one to prominence so that millennia later her name is still one known and spoken of.

Combining literary skill with known historical and Biblical accounts Jill Eileen Smith weaves together a story that both seems plausible and reads well.  There are three main focuses of this book that move towards the climax - the village that Deborah calls home, Barak and his troops, and the Kenite family that has found itself caught in the middle.  This is historical fiction that offers some interesting insights into a world that finds itself caught up in the trials and anguishes of war.

I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher Revell in exchange for my honest review.

About the Book:
Canaan has ravaged Israel. The people are in hiding. 

All that stands between surrender and hope is one untested woman. 

Deborah will never forget the day her father and brothers left to worship at the Lord's tabernacle--or the wails of her mother after finding their bodies at the city gates. The memories of Canaan's cruelty haunt her and all of Israel. Now in this dark time, the Lord calls on Deborah to lead His people away from the idols of other nations and back to Him. 

Deborah never asked to be a prophetess or a judge over God's people. Still, she cannot deny His voice or the visions that accompany it. Can her family ever understand? Will her people believe God's calling on her life? And can the Canaanite menace be stopped?

With her trademark impeccable research and imaginative storytelling, Jill Eileen Smith brings to life the story of Israel's most powerful woman in this intriguing and inspiring novel.

Jill Eileen Smith is the author of the bestselling Wives of King David series and The Crimson Cord, as well as the Wives of the Patriarchs and the Loves of King Solomon series. Her research has taken her from the Bible to Israel, and she particularly enjoys learning how women lived in Old Testament times. She lives with her family in southeast Michigan.

Jill loves to hear from her readers. Contact her at, or follow her on Facebook at or Twitter @JillEileenSmith.