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Fourth Dawn (A.D. Chronicles #4)

4.4  ·  Rating Details ·  1,144 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
Where is the promised liberator who will set the world right?
No one is secure in Judea. Betrayal and suspicion are the coin of the realm as King Herod plunges deeper into madness, determined to hold on to his kingdom . . . no matter the price.

Young Mary of Nazareth receives an unusual visitor as she tends a cow in her parents’ barn. What he tells her will change everythi
Hardcover, 332 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Tyndale House Publishers (first published August 18th 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Oct 19, 2016 Jerry rated it really liked it
A wonderful retelling of one of the Bible's best-loved stories.
Sep 27, 2012 Loraine rated it it was amazing
I have never been disappointed by anything Bodie Thoene has written. This story covers the time period from right before the angel appears to Mary through Mary and Joseph's wedding. Thoene has done an excellent job of portraying the thoughts and feelings of Mary, Joseph, Mary's parents and siblings as well as her Aunt Elizabeth and Uncle Zachariah (the parent's of John the Baptist and a cousin of Mary). This was biblical fiction at its best.
Ruthe Turner
Sep 24, 2016 Ruthe Turner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this 4th book of the A.D. Chronicles, the Thoene writing team re-tell familiar events from the Bible – the birth of John the Baptist, the angel visits to Mary and Joseph, the birth of Jesus. Thank you, Thoene's, for taking those dear stories that have become almost rote in our minds. You have returned us to the drama and wonder of it all. Reader Sean Barnett is as much a master at reading as the Thoene's are at writing.
Apr 25, 2010 Amanda rated it really liked it
In a LOST-esque turn of events, the 4th book in this series takes a step backward in time. The previous book left off with Jesus restoring sight to blind Manaen and Alexander and Zahav uniting in marriage. Now we're taken 33ish years back in time to before Jesus was born. To before John the Baptist was born. To before Mary and Joseph were even Nazareth's hottest item.

This story centered primarily around Mary and Joseph. They are betrothed and head-over-heels in love with one another when Mary re
Todd Coburn
Nov 27, 2016 Todd Coburn rated it it was amazing
The entire AD Chronicles series, starting with book 1, is some of the best writing I've encountered, both in the spiritual and secular realms. Bodie's insights into Scripture are consistently deep, often deeper than what I have seen from many pastors and teachers of God's Word. The fictional details that she creates to flesh out the details of the story not recorded in Scripture seem insightful and accurate to a surprising degree. I highly recommend this book and series as the pinnacle of Bodie ...more
Tiff Miller
Jun 14, 2012 Tiff Miller rated it really liked it
I just finished this one the other day, and it was beautifully written. It jumps backwards in time to before Jesus' birth, and tells the story of Mary & Joseph, as well as Zechariah and Elizabeth (the parents of John the Baptist).

Besides the first book in this series, this one has been the most believable. I was so bummed that it ended!

Unlike the other books in this series, the one flaw that bothers me the most is basically absent, which is refreshing. In this series, many of the characters
Oct 09, 2012 Lizzy rated it it was amazing
4th in the series. This is how Mary meets Gabriel, and about Elizabeth and Zachariah and we are introduced to Onias who goes back into the genealogy to discover when the Messiah should come. Herod is going crazier and getting more demented as he thinks everyone is after his throne. I love all the details of the Jewish and Roman history I am learning. One highlight~Hebrew letters have a numerical value. In David's name the number of the letters add up to 14. 14 is also the number of the word YOD ...more
Jan 13, 2016 Dyana rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent biblical fiction series. In this fourth book we flash back to the events leading up to the wedding of Joseph (Yosef) and Mary. It begins with Zachariah and Elizabeth (Elisheba), parents of John (Yochanan) the Baptist and the angel Gabriel visiting Mary. We also read about the evil, paranoid, jaundiced, King Herod and his attempts to eliminate anyone who is interested in the coming Messiah.

Other characters are Onias the Tutor who researches the ancient prophecies in secret;
(To be read after "Third Watch" and before "Fifth Seal", although I recommend reading before "First Light")

Fourth in a series of "books" written by historical fiction character Peniel, this volume tells the partially fictitious backstory of Jesus' parents, Mary and Yosef, as well as his extended family, including Zechariah and Elisheba. Readers also learn more about King Herod the Great's paranoid policies, and just how the wisemen knew when Jesus was born.

I'd consider recommending this book to
May 01, 2014 Jill rated it really liked it
We get to meet Mary as a young woman in this book and Elizabeth, her cousin. Herod is also portrayed in a memorable (not in a good) way. In writing any historical fiction there are liberties taken to tell a good story, and this one is no exception.

Mary's father is shown as having no faith in Mary's angelic visit nor her news of immaculate conception. He shooed them off to Elizabeth's house to hide his shame and promised he'd believe she was pregnant as she had reported if they returned with a c
Jul 23, 2011 Monica rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite book so far in the A.D. Series. It chronicles the beginning part of the gosapels when Zachariah finds out Elizabeth is going to be with child and when Mary finds out she will birth the savior. Even though it is a fictional account of what truly went on the authors do a wonderful job mixing the truth of the Bible in with the story. What grabbed me the most was seeing what Mary could have gone through with her lovely revelation to her parents and betrothed over an angel ...more
Jun 17, 2013 LadyS rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-and-half-stars
Bodie Theone, a great read every time. these people can write.

observation: these books are not just entertainment, it is delightful to imagine what was happening during the time Jesus was born. The purpose for these books is to educate the reader on the real challenges people faced back then of political unrest and bloodshed. Also the authors reinforce the power of God and his wonderful works in the earth. Jesus can do anything, he is God! The realization brings you to closer relation with your
Jeni Enjaian
This is where the story starts to go off the rails. It's difficult to write fiction that involves Biblical characters and especially hard when those Characters are part of one of the most well known stories in the western world. I don't think the Thoenes managed as well as they could. These stories also reveal the differences in theology that I have with the Thoenes. It's hard for me to get into a work of Christian fiction when I'm struggling with that. I'm on the fence as to whether or my I'm ...more
James Lucas
Jul 11, 2016 James Lucas rated it it was amazing
I just finished the 4th book in this series and have not read the birth of John and Jesus written in this form. Many forget that they were Jews who followed all the customs and rituals. Even with their births, the Brit Milah was written in the way the ceremony followed. Their lives, until their ministries started, centered around following the same rituals. The story told this way makes the whole event, including their correct Hebrew names of Yeshua for Jesus and Yochanan for John, makes the ...more
A passionately woven retelling of the beginning of the Christmas story. Engaging, emotional,and inspiring, this was a fresh look at a story I've heard dozens of times. A few paragraphs in the Bible expanded into a whole other world - it really challenged me to think about the people and what it must have been like for Mary and Joseph. I loved it. The other stories - Zachariah and Elizabeth, Onias and Tovah, King Herod and his conspiracy theorists - iced the cake for for a positively spellbinding ...more
Brian Willms
Jun 18, 2013 Brian Willms rated it really liked it
This fourth book in the series took a turn in that it looked back in time to the story of Mary and Joseph and their angelic visitations. (The previous books were already into Jesus' ministry times.) It added a perspective (once again) of taking me to their time, political temperature, social norms, etc. to help me better understand the sacrifices they made and how incredible the Holy Spirit is to have orchestrated all the events.

On to book 5.....
Feb 05, 2016 RainbowWriter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was the first Bible novel I've ever read. I'm ready to give full score, because the story is absolutely loyal to the Bible and it gives realistic image of Joseph and Mary and the Antique's era. Though Bodie Thoene has added to the story some characters that the Bible doesn't name, the story gets even better and more believable. I love how Bodie writes with depth and emotion not forgetting to mention some attractive details. Bodie & Brock Thoene have been my favourite authors ever since.
Michelle Blackman
I've recently read the first three in this [A.D. Chronicles] series, so I'm curious to see how many of the characters from those are woven into this one.

This is like a "pre-quel" for the other three--goes back in time to the birth of Jesus--very imaginative about Mary milking a cow when the angel appears to her.

Debra Johnsen
Apr 14, 2014 Debra Johnsen rated it it was amazing
Another great one by the Thoene's. I love how they weave this fictional story around the well -known biblical story. I chuckled when someone complained that this series didn't seem biblical because it didn't use King James English. Of course, Jesus and Mary and Joseph didn't speak English, 1611 version or otherwise
Sheila Thonen
May 09, 2016 Sheila Thonen rated it liked it
Another great book in the AD Chronicles Series by the Thoenes. The fiction telling of what could very well have been the relationship between Mary and Joseph. Again, great research of the times, superb characters and great storyline. Not as good as the first 2 books in the series, but a worthy read.
Meadow Frisbie
Sep 24, 2009 Meadow Frisbie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jewish
Mary finds her betrothed to be a man that her family has been looking for. But when Mary returnes from a trip pregnant, she must convince Joseph that it was God's will, and not man's

This book was great. Mary was such a sweet, spunky character.
Jan 09, 2016 Linda rated it it was amazing
This volume leaves the ministry of Yeshua (Jesus) to fill in some of the backstory, specifically, the birth of Yochanan (John) the Baptist, and the wedding of Mary and Yosef (Joseph). We also get a glimpse of the Persian astronomer Melchior, who is watching the signs in the sky at Ecbatana.
Oct 06, 2011 Amanda rated it really liked it
Another good book to dig deeper into what the Bible really tells us about Messiah. There are so many things that prophecy His coming that I didn't even realize were about Him. Our God is an awesome God!
Mark Baker
Mar 18, 2014 Mark Baker rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2005
The historical fiction series flashes back for the first of a trilogy about the birth of Yeshua. Powerful even if you already know the ending.

Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.
Mar 04, 2009 Missy rated it did not like it
I thought I'd like this book since it was based during New Testament times. I couldn't make it very far.
Jan 05, 2012 Karen rated it it was amazing
What can I say - it was great. Love the authenticity and the storylines in the Thoenes' books. The order of this book in the series is a bit confusing, but still a good read.
Wayne C Anderson
Nov 02, 2010 Wayne C Anderson rated it it was amazing
This is the forth book in the A.D. Chronicles Series. I have read the first three. I will probably read them all if they stay true to their intrigue...
May 13, 2016 Cassandra rated it really liked it
I enjoy reading this series because of how real all the characters are. I feel like I am right there with them.
Dec 29, 2009 Jennifer rated it liked it
The story wasn't as good as book 2; some doctrinal inaccuracies. However, the book led to some profound thoughts.
Aug 09, 2012 greenivyk2 rated it it was amazing
Brings the stories of the New Testament a new life. Listening to it helped know how to pronounce many of the Hebrew names and added a realistic appeal! Reading the AD Chronicles in our book club.
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BODIE AND BROCK THOENE (pronounced Tay-nee) have written over 45 works of historical fiction. These best sellers have sold more than 10 million copies and won eight ECPA Gold Medallion Awards.

Bodie began her writing career as a teen journalist for her local newspaper. Eventually her byline appeared in prestigious periodicals such as U.S. News and World Report, The American West, and The Saturday E
More about Bodie Thoene...

Other Books in the Series

A.D. Chronicles (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • First Light (A.D. Chronicles, #1)
  • Second Touch (A. D. Chronicles #2)
  • Third Watch (A. D. Chronicles #3)
  • Fifth Seal (A.D. Chronicles #5)
  • Sixth Covenant (A. D. Chronicles # 6)
  • Seventh Day (A. D. Chronicles #7)
  • Eighth Shepherd (A. D. Chronicles #8)
  • Ninth Witness (A. D. Chronicles, #9)
  • Tenth Stone (A. D. Chronicles, #10)
  • Eleventh Guest (A.D. Chronicles, #11)

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