Abraham and Sarah

Written by Roberta Kells Dorr
Review by Marie Burton

In this biblical novel featuring the first patriarch and matriarch, Abraham and Sarah, the author glazes over the accepted storyline in Genesis but fills in the blanks with skillful storytelling. Beginning with Abram’s family, with Sarai as his half-sister, we follow the events in their lives as they marry and travel throughout the Holy Land.

With a supporting cast of characters such as Lot, his wife Mara, and Hagar the Egyptian, who becomes the mother of Abraham’s son Ishmael, readers of the Bible will appreciate the novelization as it adds more context to the actual events depicted in Genesis. The best features of this story are the characters as Dorr has portrayed them: selfish, envious, and flawed. Hope and redemption come along later, but the dramatic events beforehand will help readers appreciate the plight of our religious ancestors.

Readers looking for an obvious connection to God will be disappointed in the first half, as it takes a while for Abraham’s destiny to develop. Dorr examines the beliefs of various gods vs. Abraham’s God, the Elohim, who starts to take shape in the latter half. The author portrays her biblical knowledge well in all her novels, and this is no exception. The slight variations to the Bible are intriguing and well done and come across as realistic. Recommended for biblical fiction lovers.