"If you sit on the bank of a river, you see only a small part of its surface. And yet, the water before your eyes is proof of unknowable depths." ~Anita Dimant, The Red Tent
Update on The Winter Reading Challenge:
I just finished The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. Wow - what a powerful book! The author takes the story of Dinah, a minor character mentioned in Genesis, and turns it into a magnificent account of that one woman's life during Biblical times. I hadn't (still haven't) read that story straight from the pages of the Bible, though I probably will now. But according to the author there is little to no detailed information on Dinah, so nearly all of what she wrote in the novel is historical fiction. Here's a blurb:
Her name is Dinah. In the Bible, her life is only hinted at in a brief and violent detour within the more familiar chapters of the Book of Genesis that are about her father, Jacob, and his dozen sons. Told in Dinah's voice, this novel reveals the traditions and turmoils of ancient womanhood--the world of the red tent. It begins with the story of her mothers--Leah, Rachel, Zilpah, and Bilhah--the four wives of Jacob. They love Dinah and give her gifts that sustain her through a hard-working youth, a calling to midwifery, and a new home in a foreign land. Dinah's story reaches out from a remarkable period of early history and creates an intimate connection with the past. Deeply affecting, The Red Tent combines rich storytelling with a valuable achievement in modern fiction: a new view of biblical women's society.
It's a beautiful book, and I highly recommend it. The story spans from before Dinah's birth all the way through her life and really highlights the role of women, and the power of motherhood and female friendship, especially in a patriarchal society. The writing is simple and lyrical, and I can't think of anyone who wouldn't enjoy reading it.
Well, my contract for One Night in Memphis is officially signed and returned, and just yesterday I heard back from my editor regarding putting together a blurb and filling our the cover art form. That was fast! And I have a tentative early July release date. It's exciting to think about another novel releasing...and yet a little overwhelming too, when I start thinking about all the ways I'm supposed to market and promote this one. Ah, well. One thing at a time, right?
Have you entered my Valentine's Day Contest yet? It's really, really easy! You can find all the details here.