Christine's Reviews > Rachel & Leah

Rachel & Leah by Orson Scott Card
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's review
Jun 29, 09

bookshelves: religious, other
Recommended for: Orson Scott Card fans
Read in June, 2009

This is the first part of the story of Jacob and his wives, up to the marriage of Rachel and Leah. With so many characters to follow, there was too much to fit in a single volume and so while it did feel incomplete, I did appreciate the difficulty trying to squeeze more of the story into one book. It would have felt much too rushed and the entire point of the story -- to get to know the women of Genesis -- could not have been realized.

I liked this book slightly better than Rebekah, but not as much as Sarah. I had noticed all throughout the series a flaw that I thought may become nearly fatal -- Card is going out of his way to make all of the main characters, the women and their husbands, into such honorable people. Yes, they have flaws but basically they are noble, good, children of God. Their human weaknesses almost make them more endearing. This is an excellent trick to use when developing fictional characters.

The following is a bit spoilerish...

The trouble is that these particular (semi-fictional?) characters had to follow a path that was laid out in the Bible. In this story, in particular, there is a situation in which a man is tricked into taking the wrong sister as his wife. How does this happen when everyone is being good and honorable and has only the best intentions? Well, the answer is more than a little convoluted. It alternately made me cringe and laugh at loud.

So while, as always, I enjoyed Card's easy-to-read style and likable characters, I found I simply could not suspend my disbelief for this tale. If he completes the series, I will undoubtedly pick up the next volume to see where it goes, but with reservations.

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