Everyone in Bethany admires Martha—the perfect Jewish woman. She feeds and clothes her loved ones, looks after the family farm, and meticulously follows every precept of the Pharisees’ strict laws. But Martha is hiding a secret. At her sister’s marriage feast, she gave her heart and her innocence to a young musician who promised to return and marry her, but instead betrayed her love and abandoned her.
Seven years later, only two people in Bethany know of Martha’s secret sin: her brother, Lazarus, and Simon, the righteous Pharisee to whom Martha is betrothed. When Lazarus falls ill, Martha is faced with a choice: send for Jesus to save her dying brother—risking the wrath of Simon who threatens to betray her—or deny Jesus’ healing power and remain trapped in her tomb of secrecy and lies.
My Review: The Tomb was a very interesting story intertwining both the story of Martha and Lazarus with the story of the man that Jesus cast seven demons out of. I felt as though the characters of both Martha and Mary were very realistic. I also really liked Lazarus. He was different than I expected him to be. The author made him the youngest of the siblings, instead of the oldest, as I always assumed he was when I read the story about him in the Bible. But he was a strong character and I really liked him.
I liked how the author defined right from wrong. One moral the book taught was that “the truth shall make you free”. The truth, no matter how ugly it is, is always, always better than a pretty lie. For, as the Bible says, the truth shall make you free. The truth certainly made Martha free!
One thing that the author did that I didn’t like was that she merged some Bible stories together in order to make it fit into her book. While the Bible stories are essentially the same, it felt more fictional than real. I realize that The Tomb is fictional, but there are ways to make fiction merge more seamlessly with reality.
All in all, it was a good book, but not the best biblical fiction I’ve ever read. I give it 31/2 out of 5 stars.
**I received a copy of this book from the publishers through Netgalley. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are mine and mine alone**