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Sarai (Wives of the Patriarchs #1)

4.05  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,201 Ratings  ·  163 Reviews
Sarai, the last child of her aged father, is beautiful, spoiled, and used to getting her own way. Even as a young girl, she is aware of the way men look at her, including her half brother Abram. When Abram finally requests Sarai's hand, she asks one thing--that he promise never to take another wife as long as she lives. Even her father thinks the demand is restrictive and ...more
Paperback, 317 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Fleming H. Revell Company (first published 2012)
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Mar 27, 2012 Laura rated it it was amazing
I love biblical fiction! I think it is the perfect way to get someone who has never picked up a bible, interested in the stories that the bible holds. Sarai, by author Jill Eileen Smith is the type of book that does just that.

The first book in the Wives of the Patriarchs, Smith has taken the story of Abram and Sarai and filled in all those missing pieces that makes these biblical characters real and vibrant. I love how she stuck close to scripture yet was able to use her imagination just enough
Apr 07, 2012 Chantelle rated it really liked it
I don't know what it is about biblical fiction that I love so much, but I do. I blame The Red Tent, I think.

This was a free kindle book, the story of Abraham and Sarah. I enjoyed it. It definitely held my interest, and I learned a lot from it as well.
SUMMARY: Sarai, the last child of her aged father, is beautiful, spoiled, and used to getting her own way. Even as a young girl, she is aware of the way men look at her, including her half brother Abram. When Abram finally requests Sarai's hand, she asks one thing--that he promise never to take another wife as long as she lives. Even her father thinks the demand is restrictive and agrees to the union only if Sarai makes a promise in return--to give Abram a son and heir. Certain she can easily do ...more
Now, I will admit that I didn't finish this book; I just absolutely couldn't. The plot was dragged out for far too long. I only read about 70 pages, and I was completely bored out of my mind. The only problem that our heroine was facing was that she couldn't get pregnant. I mean, not to belittle this woman's most difficult challenge in life, but COME ON. Think about something else for a change. Almost every chapter depicted her worry of not being able to have a child with her dear, loving husban ...more
Feb 18, 2014 Kristin rated it really liked it
Over the last few years I’ve really became interested in historical fiction—particularly biblical fiction.

It helps me visualize the world, the setting and the characters when I’m doing my Bible reading. It helps me look at the Bible differently by bringing to life the characters I’ve read about.

This is the first book that I’ve read by this author and I thought it was pretty good. I would definitely read more of her stories. I liked that she provided scriptures in sections of the story so I coul
Mar 04, 2012 Cindy rated it really liked it
Jill Eileen Smith does such a wonderful job of bringing stories we have read all our lives in the Bible to life. I can honestly say after years of reading many different authors and books, that I enjoy the way that Jill does Biblical fiction best. She is true to the scriptural passages and the historical facts, but also bringing in her own take of the stories and making that come to life. Her descriptive powers are great, you can picture the scenes in your mind, and you feel like your a part of ...more
Mar 17, 2012 Linda rated it it was amazing
Jill amazes me with the in-depth insights in her Biblical historical novels. Sarai: A Novel is no different! Though this may be a familiar story from the Bible to many of you, Jill brings it to life through the depths of her characters and their interactions throughout the unfolding of their lives.

From the introduction of idol worship, the call of Abram to Canaan, and the eventual settling in the land, we see the personal struggles, jealousies, regrets, greed, and anxieties of each character, pa
Abbie Riddle
Mar 04, 2012 Abbie Riddle rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Abbie by: Donna Hausler, Baker Publishing
Jill Eileen Smith wowed readers with her Wife of David series in which she explored the lives of Michal, Abigail and Bathsheba. Now she is embarking on a new series called the Wives of the Patriarchs that promises to be just as exciting and engaging.

I was so excited to receive a review copy of this book. When I was first introduced to this author it was through the book Bathsheba, which I devoured with great excitement. I expected great things with this book and was not disappointed in the least
Aug 19, 2014 Renee rated it really liked it
“What a failure her life had been. Would she have lied to God if she’d had more faith, been more righteous? How could she possibly have a son at her age? And yet, if she had believed all along . . .” ~from Sarai ~

These lines from Jill Eileen Smith’s novel share the anguish Sarai feels as she realizes how often she has missed God’s favor because she cannot bring herself to trust Him. God blesses Sarai with a very good life—especially for a woman of that time period. She has incredible beauty, a
Jan 26, 2013 Meghan rated it liked it
I've read several of Smith's books and while I loved the first few I stopped reading "Michal" partway through and was very disappointed with this one's ending. The story itself is wonderfully imaginative and I liked the speculation throughout. At the very end, however, after all this intricate story and sharing of Sarai's heartache of infertility we basically get: a year later Isaac was born, Abraham was happy, the end. Gahhh! Really? No description of how she felt when she figured out she was p ...more
Alicia Willis
Jun 06, 2016 Alicia Willis rated it really liked it
18+. Preferably for married individuals for large amounts of marital moments and adult content.

I enjoyed this book very much. It stayed close to the Biblical account, while adding some historical details and creative insight. I learned a lot and found myself understand (rather than judging, as we often do with Bible characters) Sarai and Abram. The stories of Hagar, Lot, Melah, and others were also interesting.

A few modern words towards the end threw me off, thus resulting in the 4 star rating.
Feb 10, 2015 Jennifer rated it really liked it
The book (and series, presumably) is a romanticized version of the Bible*.
Initially, my skeptic emerged at the first glance at this book, but I put it behind me and opened up the book. At times, I wanted to throw the book**, only to find myself picking it up again to read more. Like I said on Twitter, it's like eating a good piece of chocolate*** and then trying not to look like a pig as you devour the whole box. (okay, I said that better before...blech. Which is why if you're not following me t
Margaret Metz
Feb 27, 2014 Margaret Metz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I love the biblical fiction. It's a sort of balancing act though. We can't know all the details of these stories and whenever details are added to the biblical story it can either add to our enjoyment or detract. This isn't my favorite story of the series, but I do appreciate the research the author has done to make the story feel authentic. In this book, the focus of the story is specific to how the lives of two different women were similar and how they made very different choices. Their choic
Andrea M
May 03, 2016 Andrea M rated it it was ok
I kinda recall from my bible studies of ages ago that Sara was a likable, even cool woman. Well not in this book, she wasn't. She was spoilt, fixated on not having children, mean and selfish. There wasn't anyone else I could like either, Abram was kinda single-minded on following God although I came close to finding some personality in Hagar. I think the author realised after some time that the Egyptian girl was turning into more of a heroine than the intended heroine because suddenly poor Hagar ...more
Dec 04, 2012 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Sarai grew up in a family of wealth and privilege. She was a true princess of Ur. Along with this privilege came responsibility: bear an heir for her husband. In fact, she wanted so badly to marry her half brother, Abram, that her father finally consented on one condition. She needed to give him an heir. If she did, then Abram would be under no obligation to take another wife. If she didn't give him one, he would be released from the promise of monogomy and be able to have another wife.

Adonai ap
Mar 01, 2012 Louise rated it really liked it
Story Description:

Sarai, the last child of her aged father, is beautiful, spoiled, and used to getting her own way. Even as a young girl, she is aware of the way men look at her, including her half- brother, Abram. When Abram finally requests Sarai's hand, she asks one thing--that he promise never to take another wife as long as she lives. Even her father thinks the demand is restrictive and agrees to the union only if Sarai makes a promise in return--to give Abram a son and heir. Certain she ca
Mar 24, 2012 Judy rated it it was amazing
Sarai – A Great Biblical Read!

This book tells the Biblical story of Abram and Sarai. If you are a believer and a follower of Christ you will know that this book follows very closely to the writings of Moses. I found this to be a great fictional read. I was so caught up and absorbed in this book that I didn’t want to put it down. I picked it up and read it every chance I got.

The author did an awesome job with the dialogue between characters. I felt like I was right there traveling with them on th
Holly (2 Kids and Tired)
I haven't read Jill Eileen Smith before, but I enjoy fictionalized accounts of biblical events. There is, of necessity, such a high degree of subjectivness to these stories, because the accounts in the Bible are brief and scholarly research can only take you so far. I think the author did a terrific job with her research and portrayal of Sarah and Abraham. Their relationship was a love story and one that, despite their grief at not conceiving children according to their own time frame, lasted th ...more
This novel brought the Old Testament to life for me. Once again Jill Eileen Smith has given me a greater appreciation for the scriptures. I knew from reading the Old Testament that Sarai was bitter and jealous of Hagar when she felt like she had to give Abram her maidservant at the time she believed she was no longer physically capable of bearing children. This story shows how difficult it was for her, and for me it created a greater empathy for her plight because I better understood her pain. T ...more
Apr 09, 2016 Trisha rated it liked it
I enjoyed reading about Abram & Sari. The author did a good job following the bible story for the most part. I didn't like some of the things she added to the story; such as Sari entering the idol worship temple and nearly offering a sacrifice. I do not believe she would have done that. Of course none of us can know this side of heaven all of the daily details of what happened, I just personally felt it wasn't in her character. The story was a bit slow in places. However, the detail and the ...more
Apr 10, 2012 Janna rated it it was amazing
I have never read Biblical fiction books quite as engrossing as the books that I have read by Jill Eileen Smith. Her series on the wives of King David was just riveting and now she has started off with the Wives of the Patriarchs and who better to start off with than Sarai, wife to Abraham. She has done it again by sweeping me away to the past and thrusting me in the middle of the scenario that Sarai lived in. Jill has a gift for recreating the setting and times of that era in such a way that yo ...more
Freda Labianca
Mar 30, 2012 Freda Labianca rated it really liked it
I love biblical stories, especially when a great author can bring them to life. This book is a great example of that. Telling you a story, that most are familiar with, and giving you a wider look at what it must have been like in that time.
And we think we have struggles now, could you imagine life without tv, internet or even running water?? Well it happened, and so did these stories.
I think anyone who knows who Abraham is would enjoying reading about his wife. She was more than just a pretty fa
Mar 07, 2016 cloudyskye rated it liked it
It is interesting what Jill Eileen did with a few chapters of the Bible, and her description of life in those ancient times in Mesopotamia, Canaan and Egypt seems quite plausible and well researched.
Still, somehow that typical 21st century clean romance language does get in the way, the protagonists don't feel quite real.
And after obsessing about Sarai's barrenness for most of the book, all of a sudden it only takes two more pages, and bam - Isaac is here.
I'm still undecided whether to carry
May 09, 2016 Cayla rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I typically don't read Biblical fiction books, but I have some degree of curiosity about a lot of characters in the Bible: Sarai, Rachel, Ruth, etc. There's so much we don't know, but it's nice to speculate. To wonder: What if? How did they feel about all these events that happened in their lives? Imagine the conversations we could have with them!

In the back of the book, I liked how the author acknowledged that Sarai was a woman who understood the feeling of regret. Her impatience for a child le
Jan 31, 2016 Robin rated it it was amazing
Loved it. This is the first novel I can remember ever reading about a woman of the Bible. I was wary of reading biblical fiction worrying that the author wouldn't follow scripture or warp it to fit their own written story... And it's why ,until now,never ventured into this genre.
However after reading "Sarai" I was so moved and impressed by Jill Eileen Smith and her deep reverence to the Lord and that it showed through her into her writing.
As I read this book, I felt as if I were literally tran
Apr 26, 2012 Rhonda rated it it was amazing
Jill Eileen Smith followed the scriptural facts closely and gave such vivid details that I felt I was actually there with them! I had never given much thought to how desperate and sad a situation it was for Hagar. She really did not have much choice in the matter, being a maid. This helped me to see things differently in the story that I had not noticed before from merely reading the scriptural account.
I highly recommend this book ! I want to read some of Jill's other Biblical ficton.
Cathy Gillespie
Apr 01, 2016 Cathy Gillespie rated it it was amazing
Wow. There are so many elements to this story. Familiar as I was with the story, reading it in this story form helped me understand it on so many levels in such a deep way.

Living myself as a woman of faith, how many times have I tried to force issues I felt God intended to happen? My I intent was pure, but the outcome was never a success when I had to play a heavy hand in making something happen. I had come to the realization some time ago, that if I allow God to do it His way and in His timing
Audrey Grant
Apr 10, 2012 Audrey Grant rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Each of her Biblical Novels is better than the last! I don't know how she does it... But I LOVE it!!! It is like being there with these women, feeling the sand and heat, the doubts and worries...she nails it and still stays true to God's Word! 5 *****
Mar 12, 2015 Allan67 rated it liked it
Another book read to the wife. She loves to be read to, she always has. Reading is one of the few things that we can do together after her stroke. This book is Biblical fiction. It pretty well follows the story of Abraham and Sarah from Genesis. There are some deviations to make the story interesting, but all told it is reasonably accurate. In my humble opinion, the story ends too soon, there are other parts of the story as related in Genesis that could have been covered that would have made int ...more
Mar 29, 2016 Molly rated it really liked it
I have never delved into Biblical fiction, but from the moment I downloaded this as an e-book on my iPhone, I couldn't put it down. It was over 800 iPhone pages, but the story was incredibly well-written. The character development was intricate, the story well-paced, and the dedication to telling the story with an attention to Old Testament history was impressive. I identified with Sarai, her struggles to keep the faith in God's promises. And I loved gaining a different perspective on some of th ...more
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 20, 2014 01:15PM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 01:25PM  
Translation to Spanish, why not? 1 1 Jul 07, 2014 05:04PM  
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Jill Eileen Smith is the author of the Wives of the Patriarchs series featuring Sarai, Rebekah, and upcoming Rachel, (Releases 2-1-14) as well as, the bestselling author of Michal, Abigail, and Bathsheba, all part of The Wives of King David series published by Revell (Baker Publishing Group.)

Her writing has taken her from the Bible to Israel and she loves learning how women lived in Old Testament
More about Jill Eileen Smith...

Other Books in the Series

Wives of the Patriarchs (3 books)
  • Rebekah (Wives of the Patriarchs, #2)
  • Rachel (Wives of the Patriarchs, #3)

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“What a failure her life had been. Would she have lied to God if she’d had more faith, been more righteous? How could she possibly have a son at her age? And yet, if she had believed all along . . .” 2 likes
“Blessed are You, Adonai our God, ruler of all things great and small, who has sanctified us with Your goodness, who has given us Your righteousness.” 0 likes
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