Daughter of Ishmael: Promised Land, Broken Heart

Diane Stringam

HISTORICAL:  The family of Ishmael is blessed with many daughters and when God commands their kinsman, Lehi, to flee Jerusalem with his family of many sons, Ishmael decides to join their families in marriage and leave together. His daughter Hannah hopes to wed the faithful Nephi, but she instead is given to Lemuel, a man who struggles with standing firm. As they venture to a new land, many trials and difficulties await them physically and spiritually. When Hannah’s own faith is tested to the limit, will she be able to stay strong?

 Readers are introduced to Hannah at a very young age and follow her life into adulthood. She is a faithful young woman filled with hope of the wonderful husband and family she will have someday, until her arranged marriage to a weak man changes everything. Hannah’s character is well-developed and the setting of her ancient culture intertwined with her spiritual convictions is especially well done. Readers will truly be able to experience myriad emotions as Hannah is forced to make choices and decisions that take her in directions she hadn’t ever planned on. There are several twists and turns throughout the book that are riveting, though there are times the pacing is uneven. The thought-provoking themes of faith vs. obedience, and culture and tradition vs. following your heart will leave an impression long after the last page is turned. With memorable characters, vivid settings, and a roller-coaster of emotion, readers will be hard-pressed to put this inspirational story down.

 Kate Campbell