Mary Magdalene

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Title: Mary Magdalene
Author: Diana Wallis Taylor
Publisher: Revell
Published: June 1, 2012
Pages: 304

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Long maligned as a prostitute or a woman of questionable reputation, Mary Magdalene’s story seems lost in the sands of time. Now a story of this enigmatic woman comes alive in a whole new way.

After one night dashes her hope of a future filled with learning, family, and young love, she tries to just make it day to day. Every day the nightmares, waking visions, and seizures get worse until she doesn’t even remember what her dreams for the future were. Her world seems like it will never seem right again. Now all she wants is for her terrors to finally stop so she can be a normal girl again.

Her seizures have ruined everything her reputation, marriage proposals, her life. Her nickname “Mad Mary” is filtered throughout the city and potential husbands run when she seizes. Except one. One says he’s willing to marry her despite it all, that they’ll work it out together, but she’s doubtful he knows what he’s getting into or that he’ll stay with her when he really sees what can happen.

Will he stay with her or will he put her away and take a new wife? Will her tormentors finally leave her or will she be called “Mad Mary” forever? Who will bring her peace from her torment if HaShem hasn’t? What will she do if and when she’s healed?
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This book was nothing like I expected. The author was imaginative and descriptive in her creation of this story. She took Mary Magdalene from a missing puzzle piece to a complete picture. Though, I don’t know how much of her story is accurate, I can definitely say that this is the way I could see her life going, and though I would have liked to tweak a few parts to the story, I give this author credit for creating such a realistic story.

Though, I’ve never read a book by this author that will change very quickly. This author loves Bible stories as much, if not more, than I do. Her passion for her work shows in every page of this book. Her knowledge of the timeline is obvious and well established and transports the reader to the time of Jesus Christ’s ministry.

Romance isn’t an integral part of the story, despite it’s advertisement of otherwise, but what little the romance is in it relaxes the story a little and lets the reader forget, even for just a few pages, of the ailments crippling Mary. Though the lack of romance was a little disappointing, I wouldn’t say by any means that it made or broke the story.

One of my favorite parts about this book was the vividness of it all. The ailments plaguing Mary an the emotions of her and her family during that time are described in vivid detail as well as the environment and the ministry of Jesus. The author stuck to the story until the very end and vividly described it all along the way. Her descriptions are the thing that really made this book.

The story was strong and well planned leading the reader through a story that some know well, others not at all. I believe that no matter you opinion of Mary Magdalene, whether you believe that she was just a normal girl with seven demons or a prostitute, I believe you can enjoy this story. Her storytelling is impeccable and expands the little that was known about Mary Magdalene. I absolutely can’t wait to read more by this author.

Overall, a fantastic story that sheds some light on who Mary Magdalene might’ve been. It’s perfect for someone who likes fiction Bible stories and/or someone who wants to read a story that is about the mysterious biblical woman. I give this book a solid four out of five.

*I received this complimentary copy of this book in exchange for this review. All opinions expressed are my own.*

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