This is certainly one the most imaginative and thought-provoking novels I have read to date. Tosca Lee accomplished an amazing feat in writing a novel from Eve's perspective that is still in line with the scriptural telling of the story of creation, fall, and the life after. If you have ever wondered how must have felt, what her life was like - you'd enjoy this book.
"Wake!" with this simple command the novel opens its doors to an amazing adventure, an invitation into Eve's life. An invitation to the beginning - life in the garden, a new relationship untarnished with sin (the wondrous state of marriage unsullied by the filth of the sinful world - in its most beautiful natural state), the fresh and inhibited relationship of God (called the ONE) and mankind - in it's perfect state. The richness of descriptive elements makes this story bound off the pages in full color in your minds imaginative eye.
I had never really taken time to contemplate the pureness of life before sin - how wondrous this must have been. A time of perfect, untarnished union with the Lord. A marriage free of temptation, shame, feelings of inadequacy or guilt - just sheer pleasure in knowing each other completely - neither person having anything to hide, withhold or fear.
Nor had I ever thought about the fact that God's most beautiful angel Satan (the angel of music and beauty) was possibly there deceiving Eve one encounter at a time, slowly leading her to the taking of that which was forbidden. That she was enchanted by his beauty and slick tongue, that she was led astray by his 98% truth and 1% lie. But then how true is that of us - one little fox ruins the entire vineyard. My heart cried out at the recounting of the fall - how Eve states, "I ate. I, who had come second went first. I, who had followed in the steps of every living thing before me, walked ahead. Perhaps my hands trembled as I held it out. Perhaps I already knew. Either way, I ate then gave it to him. He ate." WOW! My breath caught in my throat as I read it written in such a way. Never had I allowed myself to actually imagine this portion of scripture to allow the impact of the action to come to rest fully on my consciences in such a shocking heavy way. In that one moment creation became dull with the entrance of sin - things changed forever.
The remainder of the novel follows the life of Eve outside of the garden in what she calls the "slow death". For the first time all life around her, all creation was in the process of dying. Even now this is what we see - and her heart longed to find a way back to the beginning to a time where there was no word for death or pain. To a time when all creation existed together in perfect harmony a constant beautiful song raised to the Father of it all - and a daily communion with Him whose hands created it all. A relationship with God that was not a struggle to maintain - no enemy to fight - surrounded by peace and beauty unexplainable. This life outside Eden is one of firsts of all kinds - some good, some bad. Again, Tosca Lee's brilliant use of descriptive words and images wakens the reader's imagination, stirs the soul, pricks the heart - awakening that awareness deep in ones self that there is something better, something we are missing, something lost that must be restored. It is as if the reader is there in the midst of it all, experiencing the deep emotions of joy and anguish.
This is an excellent book for adults. I would not recommend it to youth because of some of the graphic details.
Thank you B&H for this review copy.