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Of Fire and Lions

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The Old Testament book of Daniel comes to life in this novel for readers of Lynn Austin's Chronicles of the Kings series or Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series. Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she'd perfected in the many years am The Old Testament book of Daniel comes to life in this novel for readers of Lynn Austin's Chronicles of the Kings series or Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series. Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she'd perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar's court. Now, as Daniel's wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she's safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear--until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar's palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili's tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone? Ultimately, Yahweh's sovereign hand guides Jerusalem's captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.


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The Old Testament book of Daniel comes to life in this novel for readers of Lynn Austin's Chronicles of the Kings series or Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series. Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she'd perfected in the many years am The Old Testament book of Daniel comes to life in this novel for readers of Lynn Austin's Chronicles of the Kings series or Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series. Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she'd perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar's court. Now, as Daniel's wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she's safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear--until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar's palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili's tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone? Ultimately, Yahweh's sovereign hand guides Jerusalem's captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.

30 review for Of Fire and Lions

  1. 4 out of 5

    Alysha (For The Love of Christian Fiction)

    Mesu Andrews with rip out your heart, step on it a few times, then mend it back together. This story was a lot to ingest. I wanted to savor every single moment of it, so it took me longer to finish it. In all honesty I could've gone for another 400 pages. Every word had a purpose and they hit their mark with perfect aim. One of the main reasons I love biblical fiction is how much it tests my knowledge of the Bible. Though I know my fair share of the book of Daniel, I had to set the book down and r Mesu Andrews with rip out your heart, step on it a few times, then mend it back together. This story was a lot to ingest. I wanted to savor every single moment of it, so it took me longer to finish it. In all honesty I could've gone for another 400 pages. Every word had a purpose and they hit their mark with perfect aim. One of the main reasons I love biblical fiction is how much it tests my knowledge of the Bible. Though I know my fair share of the book of Daniel, I had to set the book down and really wrack my brain to line what I knew, up with the book. I learned new things I never knew before too. It made me hunger to dive into the Scriptures and LEARN ALL THE THINGS. I'm going to be super transparent with y'all right now! It is very rare that I "feel" anything when reading Christian Fiction. Don't get me wrong, I see the hope and love oozing off pages, but I'm rarely so moved by what I feel in a book that I get choked up. BUT THIS BOOK Y'ALL! I FELT God while reading this book. Though some aspects of this book are fictional, the God of Daniel is not. That miracle worker is not. Yaweh is not. I will NEVER know what those times were like. I will never understand the physical and spiritual battle Daniel had to face on a daily basis. But I know that the same God back then, is the same God right now. Getting a glimpse into what it could have been like was eyeopening. But even more so was the utter conviction I felt as I read this masterpiece. I never want to get to comfortable where I am that I take God's spirit for granted. Tomorrow is not promised, and I want to live every day having an ASSURANCE that when I take my last breath on earth I'll take my next in Heaven. This book is so full of wisdom. I got SO much out of this book and I know it's going to stay with me for the rest of my life. For I feel this is the book that altered my walk with God. If I could give this book more than 5 stars I absolutely would. Just know this piece of art has earned it's rightful spot as one of my favorite books ever! *I received this book from the publisher**All opinions are my own*

  2. 5 out of 5

    Loraine

    Mesu Andrews says her philosphy of writing Biblical fiction is: 1) Biblical accounts and Scripture to build the foundation, 2) Historical facts that support the truth of God's Word, and 3) creative fiction to hold the historical fact and Biblical truth together. This is so obvious in this wonderful tale of Daniel. The story is so well-fashioned that it seamlessly weaves all 3 components together to place me right in the middle of Daniel's life and the time period and evil that existed during the Mesu Andrews says her philosphy of writing Biblical fiction is: 1) Biblical accounts and Scripture to build the foundation, 2) Historical facts that support the truth of God's Word, and 3) creative fiction to hold the historical fact and Biblical truth together. This is so obvious in this wonderful tale of Daniel. The story is so well-fashioned that it seamlessly weaves all 3 components together to place me right in the middle of Daniel's life and the time period and evil that existed during the 70 year Jewish exile to Babylon. I felt the frustrations and weariness that Daniel faced in dealing with the kings and royal court while, at the same time, staying true to his Hebrew beliefs. The stress and pressure had to have been overwhelming, yet Daniel never lost faith. While the Bible doesn't tell us whether or not Daniel was married, Andrews' story created a plausible marriage and family that could have been true. I especially appreciated Andrews' concluding notes that gave explanation of the choices that she made in determining points within the story that were best supported by Scripture and history. An excellent Biblical read that made my 2019 favorites list and which I would highly recommend to readers of Biblical fiction. **I received a complimentary copy of this book from Waterbrook through NetGalley. Opinions are mine alone. I was not compensated for this review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Monzon

    Anyone else an Adventures in Odyssey fan? I always used to think taking a ride in the Imagination Station would be really cool. Well, you don’t need a trip to Whit’s end in order to find yourself caught up in the adventure and action found in bible stories. All you need is a Mesu Andrews book! The fiery furnace and the lion’s den are two stories we’ve all grown up hearing in church school and family worship. Mesu makes those stories come alive thousands of years later in this book.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    If you are a fan of biblical fiction, you won't want to miss this exciting retelling of the life of Daniel. Mesu Andrews is a wonderful story teller. She includes a lot of historical details that enrich the biblical account. The story is told through the eyes of a fictional character named Abigail. I enjoyed her character development and story line. She added an interesting female aspect to what would have been an all male story. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for the purp If you are a fan of biblical fiction, you won't want to miss this exciting retelling of the life of Daniel. Mesu Andrews is a wonderful story teller. She includes a lot of historical details that enrich the biblical account. The story is told through the eyes of a fictional character named Abigail. I enjoyed her character development and story line. She added an interesting female aspect to what would have been an all male story. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Andi

    If you grew up in Sunday school like I did I’m sure you’ve heard the story of Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace and their best friend Daniel in the lion’s den during their exile in Babylon. But, have you truly experienced the story in a way that makes it unforgettable? That is what Of Fire and Lions does. I’ve read Daniel, studied it, even Bible quizzed on it as a kid, but Mesu Andrews with the use of an exiled Hebrew girl, Abigail/Belili makes the experience of Daniel all enc If you grew up in Sunday school like I did I’m sure you’ve heard the story of Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace and their best friend Daniel in the lion’s den during their exile in Babylon. But, have you truly experienced the story in a way that makes it unforgettable? That is what Of Fire and Lions does. I’ve read Daniel, studied it, even Bible quizzed on it as a kid, but Mesu Andrews with the use of an exiled Hebrew girl, Abigail/Belili makes the experience of Daniel all encompassing. In fact it is so incredibly rich and detailed with exquisite research it begs to be savored rather than devoured. The theme of faith, commitment, and trust run through this novel from beginning to end. Living in America we’re not going to see someone tossed in a fiery furnace or fed to the lions for a crime but as I read through this story I hoped I would’ve behaved like Meshach, Shadrach, Abednego and Daniel and willingly gone into the furnace and lion’s den trusting that God would take care of me instead of the fear that would surround me. This book is not to be missed! Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book via the publisher in association with Mesu Andrews street team. I was not required to write a review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Mesu Andrew's Of Fire and Lions tells the story of Daniel. It is told from the POV of Daniel and Belili. While the Bible tells us that Daniel maintained a strong walk when faced with persecution, many Hebrews in captivity struggled to maintain a close relationship with God. Ms. Andrew's chooses to give Daniel a wife and family. In Belili, the author gives us a heroine that has learned to be strong and courageous in order to survive. The story spans the full seventy years of Hebrew captivity. Th Mesu Andrew's Of Fire and Lions tells the story of Daniel. It is told from the POV of Daniel and Belili. While the Bible tells us that Daniel maintained a strong walk when faced with persecution, many Hebrews in captivity struggled to maintain a close relationship with God. Ms. Andrew's chooses to give Daniel a wife and family. In Belili, the author gives us a heroine that has learned to be strong and courageous in order to survive. The story spans the full seventy years of Hebrew captivity. Through Belili's journey of faith, the author describes the hardships many Hebrews endured in captivity and the difficult decisions they made in order to survive. The author deftly describes life in Babylon at the time, filled with political intrigue of the court and the various rulers Daniel served under. While the retellings of the escape of Shadrach,Meshach and Abednego from the furnace and Daniel from the lion's pit were fabulous, I was most touched by the retelling of Nebechadnezzar's transformation. Mesu Andrew's continues to write biblical fiction in a way that maintains the integrity of the biblical foundation, expertly utilizing historical research and weaving these all together in a hauntingly beautiful story of the Hebrews in captivity. Her writings challenge me as the reader to visit these stories in the Bible, reading them with a new perspective. Not a perspective that diminishes God's Word, but one that challenges the reader to wonder how they would respond if placed in a similar fate. A few of my favorite quotes: " In that moment, I knew my greatest failures as a mother hadn't been protecting my children too fiercely or even holding back secrets. My most dire mistake had been neglecting to trust Yahweh's power and sufficiency in both their lives and my own." "Because uttering meaningless words to a false god shriveled my soul." "No fear of physical or emotional pain could compare to an everlasting separation from the One who always showed me mercy." I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book from the author/publisher. I was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    I read this book in one sitting. A facinating look at Daniel and the Babylonian captivity.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    OF FIRE AND LIONS is Ms. Andrews' newest biblical fiction and fans of this genre will devour it. Biblical fiction is not my favorite genre, I find it changes the way I look at the Bible and I am not sure if how much of the story is fiction. However, Ms. Andrews is a very talented author, the story is engaging and hard to put down--even for me, a non-fan! Her characters come to life on the page and as the reader, I care. If you love biblical fiction, you will love OF FIRE AND LIONS. I was given a c OF FIRE AND LIONS is Ms. Andrews' newest biblical fiction and fans of this genre will devour it. Biblical fiction is not my favorite genre, I find it changes the way I look at the Bible and I am not sure if how much of the story is fiction. However, Ms. Andrews is a very talented author, the story is engaging and hard to put down--even for me, a non-fan! Her characters come to life on the page and as the reader, I care. If you love biblical fiction, you will love OF FIRE AND LIONS. I was given a copy free. All opinions are my own.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Audrey

    At first I found the story confusing since it alternated between different time periods in Daniel's life but soon it came together. I was sceptical about Daniel having a wife but the author explained that possibly a eunoch was a palace official. Ok, I grant her the right for artistic license. The story was written from Abigail/ Belili's perspective. She was a childhood friend of Daniel in the early years of their captivity. Years later she became his wife. In the intervening years Abigail became At first I found the story confusing since it alternated between different time periods in Daniel's life but soon it came together. I was sceptical about Daniel having a wife but the author explained that possibly a eunoch was a palace official. Ok, I grant her the right for artistic license. The story was written from Abigail/ Belili's perspective. She was a childhood friend of Daniel in the early years of their captivity. Years later she became his wife. In the intervening years Abigail became Belili when she strayed away from Yahweh for sometime. When she returned to God she kept many secrets from Daniel and her daughters about her past life. It was hard to know how to rate this book. Even though I had doubts about his wife, the story of Daniel was quite interesting.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    This is another success for Mesu Andrews! I don’t read her books but I become part of her books. When I read the description I knew I must have it in my hands. I love to read anything about Daniel. He is one of my favorites besides Jesus. I love the way Mesu gave this fictional bible story to life. The characters, the time and feeling part of this book was such a wonderful experience. I love how she made this book come alive. I received a copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kathy DiDomizio

    Mesu Andrews writes Biblical fiction in a way that completely draws me into her stories like few other authors. I have thoroughly enjoyed all her books, but Of Fire and Lions is my new favorite! This beautifully told story follows a Hebrew girl, Abigail, who is captured in the fall of Jerusalem in 605 BC and made a servant to four young princes who were also taken in the siege. It becomes her charge to ensure the princes, who include Daniel, arrive in Babylon healthy and unharmed. During their jo Mesu Andrews writes Biblical fiction in a way that completely draws me into her stories like few other authors. I have thoroughly enjoyed all her books, but Of Fire and Lions is my new favorite! This beautifully told story follows a Hebrew girl, Abigail, who is captured in the fall of Jerusalem in 605 BC and made a servant to four young princes who were also taken in the siege. It becomes her charge to ensure the princes, who include Daniel, arrive in Babylon healthy and unharmed. During their journey, Abigail becomes close to the young princes, and all five vow to return to Jerusalem at the end of Jeremiah’s prophesied 70 years. Once they arrive in Babylon, however, Abigail becomes separated from the princes, and her life takes a drastic turn. Renamed Belili, she does things of which she would never have thought herself capable in order to survive and feels unworthy of Yahweh’s love. Meanwhile, Daniel’s life takes a very different path. Gifted from God with the ability to interpret dreams and understand prophecy, he is appointed to use his talents to serve Babylon’s royalty. Even so, Daniel remains wholeheartedly devoted to Yahweh. The lives of Abigail and Daniel rejoin in an elegantly woven tale of abiding faith, steadfast devotion, reconciliation, and forgiveness that underscores the glory of our amazing God. I won’t spoil it by sharing more, but I highly recommend this inspirational book and feel certain that if you like Biblical fiction, this will become a new favorite. I received an advance copy free from the publisher, but the opinions expressed are entirely my own.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Dianna

    Abigail is a Hebrew servant when, at age nine, she is taken as a captive into Babylon. She is assigned to serve Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. I thoroughly enjoyed this imagined retelling of the life of Daniel (and his fictional family) from the Old Testament. So many Bible-based books that I pick up lately seem have the goal of exposing all the weirdness that is in the Bible (and yes! there's a lot! I get it!). I found it refreshing that Mesu Andrews was more interested in telling the Abigail is a Hebrew servant when, at age nine, she is taken as a captive into Babylon. She is assigned to serve Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. I thoroughly enjoyed this imagined retelling of the life of Daniel (and his fictional family) from the Old Testament. So many Bible-based books that I pick up lately seem have the goal of exposing all the weirdness that is in the Bible (and yes! there's a lot! I get it!). I found it refreshing that Mesu Andrews was more interested in telling the story from a faith-promoting perspective (while still not trying to plaster modern ideals on top of the story). Daniel was such a human character, although he was a prophet, and I love that the author wasn't afraid to give him weaknesses and imperfections. But he also had a prophet's perspective on God's plan for his people, and I appreciate that the author was able to give him two sides. I would highly recommend this book to friends who are interested in historical fiction, Christian fiction, or just a good book. It was hard to put down! Content: rape, sex, beatings, war, happen "off-screen." There are no details and nothing graphic, and I would let my kids age 13+ read this.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Phyllis

    Freedom despite captivity Mesu Andrews brings the book of Daniel to life in this exciting tale. Not content to have her characters molded perfectly, without flaw, for her readers to wish they could emulate, she carves them out of flesh and blood and makes them fully human. She took the Biblical account and made it come to life for me more than than it has in the past as I considered even more the things the captives would have seen and experienced. Belili, also known as Abigail, was one of the cap Freedom despite captivity Mesu Andrews brings the book of Daniel to life in this exciting tale. Not content to have her characters molded perfectly, without flaw, for her readers to wish they could emulate, she carves them out of flesh and blood and makes them fully human. She took the Biblical account and made it come to life for me more than than it has in the past as I considered even more the things the captives would have seen and experienced. Belili, also known as Abigail, was one of the captives wrested from her life in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon in the company of Daniel and three other princes to whom she became a handmaiden. Despite an amazing encounter, when she later found herself deserted and alone, she allowed fear to dictate her choices and lead her into a life which she wished she could tuck away and hide from. And for decades she was able to do just that. Her fears and shame controlled her and the secrets she couldn't share caused her children to despise her. The author's portrayal of Daniel was simply amazing! I hesitate to say much, not that I think you don't know his story, but because I don't want to give away the things you wouldn't know about this story. The way she made him both more human and more admirable was nothing short of masterful. And quite encouraging. I imagine one of the hardest things about writing historical fiction is potentially taking people's preconceived ideas and tossing them out the window. There were a few things, especially at the beginning when Abigail is escaping from the palace at her Ima's command, that made me think ""but that's not possible!"" ""If she had done that. . ."" And yet I could also think of why it could be possible after I stopped to consider. Because of what David. . . And what the Babylonian soldiers did. . . Early on, I determined to read without judging too quickly and to see where the author was going with this. I know that she has studied the events and the history surrounding this period much more than I ever have. I'm not saying I threw out everything I know. I balanced what I read with what I know of Scripture and of God's nature. As long as there was nothing contradicting these two things, I would not stop reading. And once I made that determination, I found myself getting wrapped up deeper and deeper in this incredible story that had me pondering things I have not pondered before. Potential reactions and motivations. And where was Daniel when his friends refused to bow to the image? Why wasn't he cast into the furnace with them? The author's suggestion was actually quite surprising. While it was all extremely touching, one of the most impacting passages in this story for me was the depiction of the events during the seven years King Nebuchadnezzar was transformed and of when that time was over, I was nearly brought to tears. One of the themes I keep seeing in my Bible reading this year, more than any other, is God's longsuffering and the way He forgives again and again and again and again. The story of His faithfulness to His people even as they were in the exile imposed on them for their faithlessness is one that should have all of us humbled and awed - because isn't that our story as well? Of Fire and Lions shows so clearly God's patience with us and His love that is always ready to accept our repentance and forgive. This story of fiery trials, shame, guilt, treachery, forgiveness, and faith is one that should not be missed! If you enjoy Western-themed romance, Her Last Chance Cowboy is sure to please. Read my full review with a Preview Do not post I was given a copy of this book. I was not required to give a favorable review nor was any money received for this review. All comments and opinions are my own.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Faye

    Taken captive by the Babylonians, Abigail, fights to survive using her wit and charm to survive in Nebuchadnezzar's court, denying her Hebrew heritage and taking the name Belili. Now many years later she is married to Daniel, and mother to four daughters who resent her, everything changes when Daniel is called to interpret mysterious writing on the wall. What will the reign of Median King Darius mean for Belili and Daniel? Told for the most part through Belili's eyes the story weaves itself forwar Taken captive by the Babylonians, Abigail, fights to survive using her wit and charm to survive in Nebuchadnezzar's court, denying her Hebrew heritage and taking the name Belili. Now many years later she is married to Daniel, and mother to four daughters who resent her, everything changes when Daniel is called to interpret mysterious writing on the wall. What will the reign of Median King Darius mean for Belili and Daniel? Told for the most part through Belili's eyes the story weaves itself forward and back through the years, winding its way and picking up threads and binding them together in various decades as the story unfolds. Well researched and lush in detail, Mesu Andrews brings this story to life with her realistic imagining of life in the courts of Babylon, the pressure to conform and fit in. Behili tells her tale in a decade jumping narrative that works well with this story, keeping many secrets until they are revealed in their due time. Belili is strong and clever, she makes the most of her situations and I was touched by her journey. She is a wonderful heroine, vulnerable and flawed, yet in that way so much more relatable. I loved Mert, their Egyptian servant and friend, who tells it like it is, and helps Belili mend what is broken. I loved how this story came together, and it is probably my favorite from Mesu Andrews. The suspense, and truly miraculous way that God used Daniel, preserving him to reveal His glory, is excellently done. Before reading this book I never thought how amazing it was that God prospered Daniel in the courts of many different kings, from the Babylonian to the Median empires. The author handles tough topics well, and takes Scripture very seriously, fictionally filling in where we can only guess what might have happened and how it came to be. A powerful and inspiring read about courage in the face of persecution and daring to be a Daniel. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and testimonials in Advertising."

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Johnson

    Title: Of Fire & Lions Author: Mesu Andrews Pages: 400 Year: 2019 Publisher: WaterBrook My rating: 5 out of 5 stars. This novel includes characters who really lived, and readers can read the true events in the Bible. The author does an amazing job of utilizing her research in this fictional tale. At the end of the book, the author shares what she learned and her thoughts about the story. Daniel was a Jewish man who was royalty and was taken to Babylon under King Nebuchadnezzar, along with three of Title: Of Fire & Lions Author: Mesu Andrews Pages: 400 Year: 2019 Publisher: WaterBrook My rating: 5 out of 5 stars. This novel includes characters who really lived, and readers can read the true events in the Bible. The author does an amazing job of utilizing her research in this fictional tale. At the end of the book, the author shares what she learned and her thoughts about the story. Daniel was a Jewish man who was royalty and was taken to Babylon under King Nebuchadnezzar, along with three of his friends. The author uses flashbacks to fill in the memories of the life Daniel’s fictional wife lived and her many interesting and hard experiences. To me, she puts life into Daniel throughout the novel. She doesn’t paint Daniel or his friends as super spiritual but men who had to face difficulties in slavery where their life was precarious every day. The work of fiction is meant to stir the imagination and help us go back in time to see the nuances of the Babylonian kingdom, Medes, Persians and G-d who was showing Himself to pagan kings. The book of Daniel tells us many things, but the author in this novel doesn’t try to include his visions of prophecies as she leaves that part to scholars. However, she tells us about the large image of King Nebuchadnezzar made all in gold and the requirement of all to bow down to it when music played. Mesu also tells of the three men who were bound and thrown into the furnace and the wonderful inexplainable thing G-d does for them. The story tells of the time Daniel is thrown into a den of lions and why this was done. Both events were real experiences of Daniel and his friends, as well as G-d revealing His judgment about one of the Babylonian kings by writing on a wall! There are fictional family members and relationships that bring to readers minds what that time might have been like for the Jewish men in captivity. How does one stay faithful to Yewah with a pagan king and polytheistic practices surrounding them? Here is a novel that takes readers back to a time long ago, to be engaged in the story with heart and soul. Enjoy the tale and read the nonfictional story in the book of Daniel in the Bible. You will be glad you did! Note: I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book. The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    Of Fire and Lions by Mesu Andrews is an outstanding book that brings to life the story of Daniel in the Bible. The story takes us from 605 BC to about 539 BC. Using Biblical facts, the author writes a fictional retelling of Daniel's life after the Babylonians took over Jerusalem to the returning of the exiles to Jerusalem. The main character in this story is Daniel's wife Abagail/Belili. I just loved this story from Abigail being the maid for Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego all the way to Of Fire and Lions by Mesu Andrews is an outstanding book that brings to life the story of Daniel in the Bible. The story takes us from 605 BC to about 539 BC. Using Biblical facts, the author writes a fictional retelling of Daniel's life after the Babylonians took over Jerusalem to the returning of the exiles to Jerusalem. The main character in this story is Daniel's wife Abagail/Belili. I just loved this story from Abigail being the maid for Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego all the way to the end. The love story between Abigail and Daniel is very touching. As children they fell in love but became separated. They married others and eventually found each other and made a life together. They had a family, all the while Daniel served the kings. This book is so well written, it is easy to forget it is fiction based on true events. There are many things that really touched me about this book. We see how Daniel put God first in his life even when he knew it could cost him his life. We see how God protected Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the furnace and Daniel the night he spent with the lions. We see how the daughters turned against Abigail when she left them to help Daniel protect King Nebuchadnezzar and his wife. We can imagine the pain Abigail must have felt to not be there for her daughters during the important times in their lives. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading fiction based in Biblical times. The author has done much research to write this story. The story is told by both Abigail's and Daniel. At the beginning of the book the author lists the characters by each of their different names they are called during their lives to make it easy to understand. I received an uncorrected copy of this book through the Of Fire and Lions Launch Team from the publisher. This is my honest review.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Vicky Sluiter

    So imagine Daniel. We know about “Daniel and the lions den”. We don’t know a lot more about him. Author Mesu Andrews helps to fill in some gaps with her “what if” novel. What if Daniel was married as a young man? But not to his first love. What if later that first love became his wife? Let me say that Andrews in no way states her book as “the way it was”. It’s clearly a work of fiction that makes you think about possibilities but does not in any way attempt to change the biblical information abo So imagine Daniel. We know about “Daniel and the lions den”. We don’t know a lot more about him. Author Mesu Andrews helps to fill in some gaps with her “what if” novel. What if Daniel was married as a young man? But not to his first love. What if later that first love became his wife? Let me say that Andrews in no way states her book as “the way it was”. It’s clearly a work of fiction that makes you think about possibilities but does not in any way attempt to change the biblical information about Daniel. We are given a lot of historical information about the temple, the ark of the covenant, what life was like in those days, all wrapped up in a beautiful love story. I found myself on the edge of my seat often. Those were not easy times and no one was exempt from the brutal rulers. But through the entire story we see God caring for His people, no matter the situation they were thrust into. And I found myself searching my heart. Could I stand as strong as they did, in the face of death? Who knows. We may need to answer that some day. If you enjoy historical or biblical fiction that will cause you to search your heart, that will make you gasp at times or even weep, then you must read Of Fire and Lions. I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Janet Ferguson

    If you enjoy biblical fiction like Lynn Austin's god & kings series, you'll enjoy this fictional story of Daniel in the Old Testament. I like biblical fiction because it sends me to the Bible to see where the author got their research.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Molly Jaber (Cover To Cover Cafe)

    You all remember sitting in the Sunday school rooms growing up and hearing the tales of young Daniel and the Lion's Den? Or what about the story of Meshach, Shadrach, and Adednego? I definitely do! Mesu Andrews has taken those stories straight from the Old Testament and weaved them with the perfect amount of fiction, to make the story come to life and play out like a movie on the big screen.  I loved learning more about Daniel and his life. It wasn't an easy life, that's for sure! Andrews tips th You all remember sitting in the Sunday school rooms growing up and hearing the tales of young Daniel and the Lion's Den? Or what about the story of Meshach, Shadrach, and Adednego? I definitely do! Mesu Andrews has taken those stories straight from the Old Testament and weaved them with the perfect amount of fiction, to make the story come to life and play out like a movie on the big screen.  I loved learning more about Daniel and his life. It wasn't an easy life, that's for sure! Andrews tips the scales with his story. It takes places during Babylonian times, and the garb that was worn then is richly detailed, so I could envision the way the people may have been then. The words that were used during that time are beautifully portrayed in this story. The action of the times, Daniel being thrown in the lion's den, the furnace of fire, all of it is intricately woven together to tell the tale of having a faith the size of a tiny seed in the Almighty God, and how it can bring you through anything.  I loved how Andrews told this book in parts. It really helped to fully feel  the emotions, see the different times, know what was happening. The research that is put into this story is richly evident. Her passion for her characters and story is felt through out the book.  This is most definitely worthy of 5 stars. If you are one who may have trouble understanding the stories of the Bible, then I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Andrews' Old Testament story of Daniel. Her unique penning of The Lion's Den will have you understanding things in a whole new like, allowing you become Daniel for a time. Your faith in God will be strong by the end of this book, and it will leaving you wanting more. Mesu Andrews, wonderful job on your story of faith and hope and trust in God! I can't wait for you to write another amazing novel!  *I received a complimentary copy of this book from Waterbrook & Multnomah and was under no obligation to post a review, positive or negative.*

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lynna

    I fell in love with the wring of Mesu Andrews. Her telling the fictional account of Daniel was inspiring. I jave already gotten another one of her books. Isaiah's Daughter! She brought this part of the Bible to life for me and several times moved me to tears. A must must read!!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Ah-mazing. Mesu just keeps getting better and better! A must-read for biblical era fiction fans.

  22. 5 out of 5

    christianchicklit

    Another Amazing Book By Mesu Andrews! I have never read a book By Mesu Andrews that I did not completely love… and this one is no exception! Although I have done a comprehensive 12-week bible study from Beth Moore on Daniel, read Daniel for Dummies (yes it was a real book but can’t find it anymore), and studied the topic of Daniel’s life in detail, there were so many new things that I discovered about Daniel’s life through reading this book. While most kids in Sunday school have heard the stories o Another Amazing Book By Mesu Andrews! I have never read a book By Mesu Andrews that I did not completely love… and this one is no exception! Although I have done a comprehensive 12-week bible study from Beth Moore on Daniel, read Daniel for Dummies (yes it was a real book but can’t find it anymore), and studied the topic of Daniel’s life in detail, there were so many new things that I discovered about Daniel’s life through reading this book. While most kids in Sunday school have heard the stories of the three men in the fiery furnace and Daniel in the lion’s den, Mesu Andrews has a real gift for being able to put the reader in the middle of the Bible Story to experience it. You will feel all the emotion of the events as they are happening. You will see nuances you have never seen before. The story of Daniel starts when he was just a teen (about 15 years old) and he is taken from the royal family in Jerusalem and brought into captivity for an intensive three-year training period to eventually be put in service to the King. He faithfully serves four different Kings and it is not until the age of about 80 years old when he is thrown into the lion’s den for his “supposed disloyalty” to King Darius. Finally, Daniel has even won over King Cyrus who finally allows the Jewish people to return to their homeland (and pays the bill). Although I had read about Daniel’s integrity from an early age (when he chose not to eat of the King’s food that might have been offered to idols), this was just the smallest glimpse into the integrity with which Daniel lived his life. He faithfully served King Nebuchadnezzar although he had watched the destruction of the Jerusalem temple and the plunder of all of the holy items that were taken. The King had killed many in Daniel’s royal family (or had certainly not been gracious to them). Yet, Daniel continued to honor the role he had been given and continued to serve this King faithfully despite the horrific things he had experienced as a result of this King’s decisions. Despite the honor that Daniel should have received for his actions and wisdom in ruling the kingdom, he continued to humble himself in all occasions and point to the glory of his God. What a lesson for today about how to live humbly in a broken world, how to live justly among the unjust and how to hold fast to your faith and the principles of your God. I received a copy of this book from Netgalley.com and the publisher in exchange for my fair and unbiased review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Becky Van Daniker

    Mesu Andrews is one of my favorite authors when it comes to biblical fiction. I had no idea what the author had in store for "Of Fire and Lions" except that the cover was absolutely stunning and that it would be based on the book of Daniel. Now, if you've grown up in the church then you're probably very familiar with this guy. That's what I love the most about this story. Mrs. Andrews brings to life the stories that happened thousands of years ago and brings it into an entirely new light. One par Mesu Andrews is one of my favorite authors when it comes to biblical fiction. I had no idea what the author had in store for "Of Fire and Lions" except that the cover was absolutely stunning and that it would be based on the book of Daniel. Now, if you've grown up in the church then you're probably very familiar with this guy. That's what I love the most about this story. Mrs. Andrews brings to life the stories that happened thousands of years ago and brings it into an entirely new light. One particular theme throughout the story is the constant challenge of staying true to God and having an abiding faith even in the face of death. Like Belili, I constantly found myself questioning myself if my faith were as strong as Daniel's. While today's circumstances are quite different and no one is being thrown into fiery pits or fed to the lions here in America, I still found myself questioning myself if I would respond the same way if I were thrown into a similar situation. I hope my answer would be yes, but it was thought-provoking. Other themes found throughout the book contain devotion, reconciliation, forgiveness, and how amazing God is. You'll also probably find yourself opening your Bible to read the book of Daniel for yourself. That's one of my favorite parts when it comes to Mesu Andrews' books. This will definitely be a book that you will not want to miss out on. Seriously. Go do yourself a favor and pre-order yourself a copy. Highly recommended! Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marsha Dixon

    Of Fire And Lions by Mesu Andrews is the story of Daniel. Daniel is one of my favorite Bible characters. The cover of this book was also a huge draw. It’s beautiful. I’ve never read any books by this author before, but will be looking for some of her books now. This book begins with Daniel and Belili/Abigail in their old age, but has the story of their younger selves and adventures throughout their lifetimes woven into it. It focuses on their lives and how decisions and actions play such an impo Of Fire And Lions by Mesu Andrews is the story of Daniel. Daniel is one of my favorite Bible characters. The cover of this book was also a huge draw. It’s beautiful. I’ve never read any books by this author before, but will be looking for some of her books now. This book begins with Daniel and Belili/Abigail in their old age, but has the story of their younger selves and adventures throughout their lifetimes woven into it. It focuses on their lives and how decisions and actions play such an important part in our lives. There is regret, sorrow, feeling of inadequacy, but there is also forgiveness, love, hope and above all, the everlasting love of Yahweh spread throughout. I wasn’t sure how the author was going to bring this historical fiction to life without taking lots of liberties and making it just a story. She did an excellent job and makes me want to go back and read Daniel and study more. Overall, an excellent job and I would highly recommend this book. I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The views expressed here are my own opinion.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Barb

    I am a big fan of Mesu Andrew's Biblical fiction and very much enjoyed her newest, Of Fire and Lions. Mesu has a gift to make Bible characters come to life and leap off the page, and she certainly hit it out of the park with Daniel! I loved learning more about Daniel and the time period in which he lived. The background and history of what was going on in the Middle East politically, socially, economically, historically, was fascinating and really contributed to the story. The reader needs to un I am a big fan of Mesu Andrew's Biblical fiction and very much enjoyed her newest, Of Fire and Lions. Mesu has a gift to make Bible characters come to life and leap off the page, and she certainly hit it out of the park with Daniel! I loved learning more about Daniel and the time period in which he lived. The background and history of what was going on in the Middle East politically, socially, economically, historically, was fascinating and really contributed to the story. The reader needs to understand that this is fiction. Yes, it is based on what the Bible tells us about Daniel, but Mesu has also taken liberties to tell a full, rich story of his life. As anyone who has ever read the Bible knows, we often only get a few details about a characters life (and often yearn for more). Ms. Andrews gives us just what we are looking for. If you are interested in Old Testament history, Daniel in the lion's den, or just enjoy good historical fiction, you'll surely like this book! I received an Advanced Reading Copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    AMAZING STORY!!! Biblical fiction is my most favorite genre, and Mesu is one of my most favorite authors. I have read a number of Mesu’s works, and have loved every single one. She is such a stellar writer, and her research is impeccably done. But what I love the most about Mesu’s books is that she is so willing to tackle the hard stories of the Bible. She does so honestly, respectfully, realistically, and in a manner that proves she really has a BIG heart for Jesus. Of Fire and Lions is a superb AMAZING STORY!!! Biblical fiction is my most favorite genre, and Mesu is one of my most favorite authors. I have read a number of Mesu’s works, and have loved every single one. She is such a stellar writer, and her research is impeccably done. But what I love the most about Mesu’s books is that she is so willing to tackle the hard stories of the Bible. She does so honestly, respectfully, realistically, and in a manner that proves she really has a BIG heart for Jesus. Of Fire and Lions is a superb novel that deftly illustrates life during the Babylonian exile. I admit to being totally mesmerized and slightly terrified the entire time I was reading. And, best of all, this novel had me doing a bit of soul searching — exactly what a Biblical novel should do! When I read the Bible, I’m always inspired by and in awe of God’s chosen people. The Bible is filled with men and women who are fantastic examples of grit, strength, zeal for God, and a steadfastness that seems unshakable. I’m encouraged by characters like Joseph, Moses, Esther, and Daniel. I attempt to glean from their stories ways I can be a better christian, but I do have to admit that many times I feel I could never measure up. I think about what I would do or say if I was in Joseph’s, Moses’s, Esther’s, or Daniel’s sandals, and I’m afraid I wouldn’t be as brave and courageous as they were. Daniel has always been, to me, one of the most intimidating figures in the Bible. He goes through terrifying ordeals, yet he never seems to waiver. He appears to be perfect in his trust and faith in Yahweh. Is this the truth though? Did he really never question or fear? Did he never get frustrated or angry at God? One of the reasons I LOVE Of Fire and Lions is because Mesu made Daniel real. In this novel, he does have moments of confusion, insecurities, doubt, and fear. Yeah, he’s Daniel and his faith is unwavering, but in this story I see a man who feels things the way I might feel if I were taken captive into an unknown land by a brutal and cruel man. Daniel’s thoughts and questions resemble thoughts and questions I had when I went through scary times myself. And, the way Mesu envisions how Daniel feels when he’s taken to the lion’s den — the terror one feels when facing a brutally scary unknown — was like looking in the mirror. I don’t ever want someone to feel so frightened by fear they’re almost paralyzed, but it is nice to know I’m not the only one on this earth who struggles with fear. I really appreciated seeing Daniel as a man with normal feelings, thoughts, and insecurities instead of the seemingly perfect prophet one sees in the Bible. I highlighted and made notes on half of this book. So many topics and ideas resonated with me, but there is one question that Daniel poses to his child that struck me hard. At one point, when discussing the return of a remnant to Jerusalem, Daniel asks his daughter, “Can you give up your comfortable routine to live in the tension of God’s uncharted plan?” What a FABULOUS question! I finished reading this novel over 24 hours ago, but I’m still fretting over this question. I would LOVE to say, “Yes!”, but I’m not sure I can and that scares me a little. Not being able to immediately say yes to this question means I have some idols in my life, and that shames me a bit. I can’t say, as I sit her typing this post, that I am fully resolved on this issue, but I very much appreciate that Mesu’s novel allowed for such self-reflection. This is definitely something I am going to have to work on and talk to Jesus about for some time. Of Fire and Lions is an amazing novel. There is SO much more I could talk about, but I don’t want to spoil a thing. Suffice to say, I really appreciate the new insight I gained into the life of one of the coolest humans in the Bible. And, being able to self-reflect as I did makes this novel a Biblical fiction gem. I highly, highly recommend this stellar novel. I received a review copy of this novel in eBook and paperback form from the author via her publisher, WaterBrook. The eBook was supplied via NetGalley. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Baker (A Baker's Perspective)

    Mesu Andrews has the ability to take a bible story that we are all familiar with and love, more than one actually, and make it come to life right before our eyes. Truly, I could see this book play out on the stage of the Sight and Sound Theater. It took me back to the days of Daniel, and offered such an interesting point of view from Belili. I don’t think I really thought of her story when reading my bible before, but this book has opened my eyes to it. And yes, I do realize that this book if fi Mesu Andrews has the ability to take a bible story that we are all familiar with and love, more than one actually, and make it come to life right before our eyes. Truly, I could see this book play out on the stage of the Sight and Sound Theater. It took me back to the days of Daniel, and offered such an interesting point of view from Belili. I don’t think I really thought of her story when reading my bible before, but this book has opened my eyes to it. And yes, I do realize that this book if fictional. However, it challenged me to look in my bible, see exactly what it said about Belili, and try to learn more about her. It also allowed me to use my imagination a little in what times truly were like in Daniel’s time. Can you imagine having to pretty much hide your faith? Can you imagine sent to a fiery furnace, or a lion’s den simply because you stood up for God? Yes, we read these two stories in the bible. Yes we are in awe of the courage these young men had. But Andrews brings you so much more than that. You see even more that they could have gone through. The research is so evident in each and every sentence you read. I felt like I was on some amazing journey where I get to jump in the bible and live there for awhile, kind of like the kids in The Magic Tree House. It’s so real, so vivid. I would find it very hard to believe that someone could read this book and not feel like they were right there next to Daniel, or Belili. I will also say this – there were some things I read that I did not recall reading in the bible. So I looked it up. I wanted to see if it was real, or if it was just an addition to the story to make it what it is – fictional. And truthfully there was a little bit of both. I think people get hung up on the fact that biblical fiction has to be 100% accurate – well I disagree. It isn’t there to teach us, although I can say that I learned A LOT in reading this. It’s there to open our eyes and minds to the things people could have faced. It’s there to make us want to search the truths in our bible and bring us closer to the One who created authors in the first place! Friends, if you have never read a biblical fiction book before, I encourage you to give this one a try. Mesu Andrews will transform you, challenge you, encourage you, and send you on a bible hunting mission. This is a story that will stick with me for years, and I can see myself rereading this many times. Read it alone. Read it with family members. Read it with a church group or book club. Just read it. I promise you won’t regret it!! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sally

    Everyone has a favorite author, one they gravitate to, and one whose new books they eagerly await. I first came across Mesu Andrews’ in 2013 with her third novel, Love in a Broken Vessel. I’ve read every one of her books since then and, yes, I do look forward to each new piece of Biblical fiction she writes. It’s always a blessing to be admitted to her street team, and one I never take for granted. That’s how I got an Uncorrected Proof for review. I’m also a bit of a tough reviewer. I have one pi Everyone has a favorite author, one they gravitate to, and one whose new books they eagerly await. I first came across Mesu Andrews’ in 2013 with her third novel, Love in a Broken Vessel. I’ve read every one of her books since then and, yes, I do look forward to each new piece of Biblical fiction she writes. It’s always a blessing to be admitted to her street team, and one I never take for granted. That’s how I got an Uncorrected Proof for review. I’m also a bit of a tough reviewer. I have one piece of criteria for a five-star review: the book must leave me with tears in my eyes. I might really, really enjoy a book, but if it doesn’t cause tears it doesn’t get that fifth star. I strongly believe in the power of emotion and sometimes I’ve been surprised by my emotional response. After finishing the final page of this book, I can say that Of Fire and Lions is a five-star read. I’m sure there will be some readers who object to the thought of fifteen year olds having intimate relations, and to the amount of violence in the book. But we must always consider the context. In this time period, people didn’t live as long. Children grew up quicker and became adults much earlier than they do now. One reason for early death was the constant military campaigns. This story of Daniel and Belili’s life starts with the invasion of Jerusalem. They endure forced exile, pagan customs, and political infighting between power-hungry leaders, and outlived kings and kingdoms. As I read, I thought about how I wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere close to a royal court. There are examples of entire families being made to pay the ultimate price for one person’s actions. What else is in this novel besides the above? Many will recognize the events after which the book is named. The main characters are witnesses to their Hebrew friends coming through the fiery furnace, and the lion’s den experience comes near the end. Daniel’s interpretation of dreams is a must in any story about him, and they’re included here. We also get Nebuchadnezzar (also sometimes historically referred to as Nebuchadrezzar) being turned into a wild animal. Mesu Andrews also gives us an in-depth look at life in the city of Babylon and the customs of both the Hebrew and Babylonian communities. One aspect I found interesting was Mesu’s choice of perspectives: Belili’s is written in the first person, while Daniel’s is in the third. She has also chosen to skip back and forth in time. The “present” time is when Daniel and Belili are old, while the other half of the narrative starts with exile and gradually moves forward in time. So, yes, to conclude: Mesu Andrews has written another amazing story based on the contents of the Bible. Of Fire and Lions has caused me to look again at the Old Testament, just as her previous books have, and has helped me understand better a section of it. It was enjoyable enough that I had a hard time putting it down. And yes, it was emotionally powerful enough to cause my eyes to leak when I finished reading! Thank you to Waterbrook and the author for my complimentary Uncorrected Proof of Of Fire and Lions.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Wren

    Absolutely my new Mesu Andrews favorite! We know some significant things about the prophet Daniel's life after he, along with other Hebrew youths, was taken to Babylon after Nebuchadnezzar defeated Israel. We know about his fast and his elevation among Nebuchadnezzar's advisors, his dreams and interpretations of dreams, and of course, his night in the lion's den. What about the rest of his life though? Did he marry? Did he have children? What happened to the other Hebrews after they were brought Absolutely my new Mesu Andrews favorite! We know some significant things about the prophet Daniel's life after he, along with other Hebrew youths, was taken to Babylon after Nebuchadnezzar defeated Israel. We know about his fast and his elevation among Nebuchadnezzar's advisors, his dreams and interpretations of dreams, and of course, his night in the lion's den. What about the rest of his life though? Did he marry? Did he have children? What happened to the other Hebrews after they were brought to a foreign country? Mesu Andrews has reimagined Daniel's life, from the perspective of his wife he might have had. Andrews brings life in ancient Babylon vividly to the eyes and ears of 21st century readers and listeners. What would it have been like to be removed from your own nation...and brought to a place with different sounds, foods, clothing, geography, and, perhaps most important for Israelites, an enormously different form of worship? Andrews introduces us to life as it might have been for Daniel. In OF FIRE AND LIONS he meets and watches over another Hebrew captive, Abigail, who's renamed Belili in Babylon (receiving a new name just like all the other Hebrew youths). Belili dreams of marrying Daniel, but Babylonian life and culture intervene, and she is carried off at the whims of a Babylonian man, to serve as a temple prostitute. Will she ever reconnect with Daniel? Andrews takes readers into Belili's life; the intimate observations of the Bible stories we're so familiar with, as well as views of life under Nebuchadnezzar. We get to experience the experiences not only of Daniel and Belili, but of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and the fiery furnace; of the night with the lions; of rejections and misunderstandings; and over and through all, the God Yahweh, who intervenes in the lives of kings, of men, and of women. OF FIRE AND LIONS is a fantastic historical fiction read. Its characters, and their lives, deeply captivate the readers, whether they're familiar with or new to the Biblical account of Daniel. If you are a fan of great adventure, of fiction based on Bible stories, and of seeing God work in the most difficult of circumstances with His love and His life, you will fall in love with Daniel and Belili. You must read Andrews' book! I received a free copy of OF FIRE AND LIONS to review. @WaterBrookPress #Partner #PRHPartner

  30. 4 out of 5

    Anne Rightler

    Of Fire and Lions is historical fiction at its finest. Mesu Andrews does a marvelous job of telling the story of a young woman who first is depicted as a Hebrew captive, finds herself an idol worshiper, and ends up the beloved wife of the prophet Daniel. Taking Biblical history and fleshing out the story, the author brings readers a thoroughly captivating read. With descriptive prose that makes the reader feel like you are right there in the scenes and realistic dialogue, the author expertly por Of Fire and Lions is historical fiction at its finest. Mesu Andrews does a marvelous job of telling the story of a young woman who first is depicted as a Hebrew captive, finds herself an idol worshiper, and ends up the beloved wife of the prophet Daniel. Taking Biblical history and fleshing out the story, the author brings readers a thoroughly captivating read. With descriptive prose that makes the reader feel like you are right there in the scenes and realistic dialogue, the author expertly portrays the struggles and the depth of emotions of the characters and brings clarification to some of the convoluted political alliances and tells of the Babylonian captivity of the Hebrews. The development of the characters throughout the story is strong, especially Abigail as she struggles to know who she is. Was she Belili, the woman who had won the love of the Medes' chief magus or was she still Abigail, a Hebrew captive who served Yahweh only? Could her family forgive her for her secrets and lies? Would Yahweh someday include her again in His watchful care? I enjoyed the portrayal of the prophet Daniel throughout the story, not just seeing him as a man who was continually faithful to Yahweh but as a husband and father as well. He knew God was good and nothing would make him deny the One True God. With the portrayal of warfare and subsequent captivity, and corrupt kings and their thoughtless rulings, this is not a light read but it is a story that portrays a sovereign God, the LORD God Most High, who alone holds all kingdoms in His hands. It is a story of sorting out fears and failures and extending and receiving forgiveness for the same. A story of the strengthening of one's faith as one learns the truth of Yahweh's love in the midst of hardship and despair, of seeing His working of miracles in impossible situations. Lovers of Biblical historical fiction will not want to miss Of Fire and Lions. I received a complimentary copy of the book from Waterbrook Publishers and was not required to write a review. The opinions are my own.

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