Saturday, February 8, 2020

Isaiah's Legacy By Mesu Andrews

Isaiah's Legacy
by Mesu Andrews
Publisher: WaterbrookMultnomah
ISBN: 9780735291881

Having started following Mesu Andrews on Instagram last year and also starting a new bookstagram account, I heard a lot of book people talking about her books. When I had the opportunity to read Isaiah's Legacy for review, thanks to WaterbrookMultnomah, I jumped at it


The drama of the Old Testament comes to life as Judah's most notorious king ascends to the throne in this gripping novel from the award-winning author of Isaiah's Daughter

At eight years old, Shulle has known only life in a small village with her loving but peculiar father. When Uncle Shebna offers shelter in Jerusalem in exchange for Shulle's help tutoring King Manasseh, Judah's five-year-old co-regent who displays the same peculiarities as her father, she's eager to experience the royal court. But Shulle soon realizes the limits of her father's strict adherence to Yahweh's Law when Uncle Shebna teaches her of the starry hosts and their power. 

Convinced Judah must be freed from Yahweh's chains, she begins the subtle swaying of young Manasseh, using her charm and skills on the boy no one else understands. When King Hezekiah dies, twelve-year-old Manasseh is thrust onto Judah's throne, bitter at Yahweh and eager to marry the girl he adores. Assyria's crown prince favors Manasseh and twists his brilliant mind toward cruelty, beginning Shulle's long and harrowing journey to discover the Yahweh she'd never known, guided with loving wisdom by Manasseh's mother: Isaiah's daughter, the heartbroken Hephzibah. Amid Judah's dark days, a desperate remnant emerges, claiming the Lord's promise, "Though we're helpless now, we're never hopeless--because we serve El Shaddai." Shulle is among them, a girl who becomes a queen through Isaiah's legacy.

My Review:

As this was my first introduction to Mesu Andrews as an author I'm wondering if this is where my starting point should've been.

Isaiah's Legacy is an extremely intense story. I've heard of King Hezzekiah as well as Manasseh, but didn't realize how terribly things went from the king to his son. As we all know, if we've read the Bible, there are stories in there that are intense and ofttimes overwhelming. We can't quite wrap our minds around how dark times were.

The introduction to Shulle sets off a very dark story. I have to admit, when I first started reading the book, I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to complete it. The depravity that Shulle experienced at the start was really hard for me to digest.  Evil existed then and it exists now. While Shulle had good intentions at the beginning, it's clear to the reader how quickly a person's thoughts can be manipulated and turned.

I will warn you, if you dive into this story, there are topics that could be hard to swallow. Yes, these are events that took place in Biblical times, but that doesn't make it any easier to read. There is also the topic of witchcraft that's throughout the entire story. You see how evil it truly is.

As we're introduced to Manasseh, I can picture children who have autism being like him. I appreciated the author's handling of this condition. She never made it more than it needed to be and I felt like she portrayed it in a very believable way. His life is also brought to life in such a detailed way.

I had to keep reminding myself how young he was and everything he went through. It's easy in this day and age to forget that kings (as well as others) married as adolescents. Imagining even my 16yr old as a ruler, married, or in battle boggles my mind, yet here was a young boy reigning initially as co-regent and then as a king. I can see how his mind was able to navigate it all if he had something such as autism, especially in this story. It certainly makes sense. It was incredible to me how Mesu brought his mind to life and helps the reader understand how it worked in his decisions.

It also helped that there was a thread of humanity in him when it came to Shulle. It aways came back to her. While he had darkness in his mind and heart, Shulle in a way kept him human. Through all of the deception that occurred in the early part of his reign (in this story), I wasn't surprised at how winding a path his life took. Amazing to me how God can use a life that had been spent in so much darkness, and for His glory!

I'm definitely going to have to try a different book by the author. This one certainly left a heaviness with me, even as I finished it. Once again it was a learning experience getting to know people of the Bible better, even through a fictional setting.

About the Author:

MESU ANDREWS is the Christy Award-winning author of Isaiah’s Daughter and numerous other novels, including The Pharaoh's DaughterMiriam, Of Fire and Lions and Love Amid the Ashes. Her deep understanding of and love for God's Word brings the biblical world alive for readers. Mesu lives in North Carolina with her husband, Roy, and enjoys spending time with her growing tribe of grandchildren.


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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.