Tawnya's Reviews > The Gates of Zion

The Gates of Zion by Bodie Thoene
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's review
Jan 06, 2009

it was ok
Read in January, 2009

This book was like reading a "B" movie. Some books can seamlessly blend historical fiction, romance, adventure, suspense, cultural issues--this is not one of them. The closest is comes to fulfilling any of these would be historical fiction. The characters are generally stereotypical and shallow, the premis is grossly biased, and I have to balk at any theme that makes one race of people 'the bad guy'; it takes a subject that is complex, historical, and sensitive and reduces it to the cognitive level of a fourth-grader. One redeeming area can be found in a few religious (Judaism-vs-Christianity)conversations between various characters. Yet, it's easy to feel that these islands of intellect are there to bolster the progaganda of the book rather than from the depth of the characters' personality.
There is really no feeling of suspense when there should be, and with the possible exception of Reb Lebowitz and Yacov, who are minor characters, you could really care less who loves who or who lives or dies.
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Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Jen (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jen I got so pissed at myself for getting into those books and hating them so much but not being able to put them down 'cuz I liked them too that I haven't picked up another book since. I can't get myself to pick one up.

I feel like I need a really excellent book to get me back on my reading rampage again. 'Cuz right now, I've got no desire. I don't want to get caught up in another crappy story. (I haven't even had the desire to pick up #5 of the Outlander series either - after yours and Patti's review)


Tawnya Excellent books are hard to come by. I have been trying to steer clear of series for precisely the reasons you mentioned, and because they take so much time, you miss lots of other good books! Maybe just settle for "good" rather than "excellent". Try The Pillars of the Earth and let me know what you think. It's long, but.... lots of interesting characters. I thought anyway, it's not for everyone, but I thought you might like it.

message 3: by Donna (new) - added it

Donna Glad to see others who found the book less than hoped for. I found it poorly edited, often redundant, and too wordy. It was recommended by my beloved niece, and I really wanted to like it. But after laying it aside several times & completing while books in the intervals, I had to admit the book just was not engaging. The was a surprise because the British mandate period its one of my favorite subjects in non fiction. I've read several books about it. My advice to Boogie Thorne - get a better editor. Did it get better in the sequels?

message 4: by Donna (new) - added it

Donna She a said as she filled her comment with typos. Evil spell correction on my phone determined to destroy my reputation.

Denise Griffin Speechless

message 6: by Danielle (new)

Danielle I know i'm late to this, but do you guys have any recommendations for historical fiction regarding Israel? I'm always nervous to read books written by conservative christian authors (even though I identify as christian, just not super conservative).

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