Rebekah: Women of Genesis

Written by Orson Scott Card
Review by Sarah Nesbeitt

Rebekah grows up as the beloved only daughter of Bethuel, the leader of his village, and a mother who had died days after her birth. When an accident results in Bethuel’s deafness, she and brother Laban communicate with him in writing. This love of learning stays with Rebekah all her life and frequently serves to trouble her, for reading from the sacred scrolls is not a woman’s task. Though unaware of her own beauty, Rebekah knows she’s destined for a greater role than that of a farmer’s wife. When she’s approached by the steward of Abraham’s household, who wants a wife for his master’s son Isaac, she is eager to follow her destiny. Rebekah is similar to her predecessor (Sarah, Card’s first biblical heroine) in high-spiritedness and strength, and even the author’s minor characters, such as the slow-witted but kindly Deborah, are well portrayed. Gentle humor and occasional surprises enliven the tale. The dialogue can be modern at times, but it’s rarely distracting, and Card’s smooth storytelling makes Rebekah an appealing heroine for both her time and ours.