Gabriel’s Daughters

Janet K.

CULTURAL FICTION:  Raised in a very closed, sheltered, polygamous community, Zina is thrilled when given permission to venture outside to attend high school.  Her innocence and naiveté become her undoing, however, when she is seduced and left pregnant by a handsome but unscrupulous teacher.  Faced with shaming her entire family or marrying a man three times her age, Zina runs away.  Through her experiences in the “gentile” world, Zina embarks on a journey of self-discovery that ultimately teaches her the importance of love, family and staying true.


The first half of this book is absolutely enthralling, captivating and hard to put down!  As the reader follows Zina on her journey, one can’t help but be deeply touched.  Unfortunately the middle of the story loses momentum as characters barely mentioned before take over. This disrupts the main storyline and from there on, things become choppy. Zina meets a man who becomes her love interest but very little page time is given to their growing relationship, making his declaration and subsequent proposal out of place and unbelievable.  Zina’s reaction and subsequent revelations follow the same pattern.  This also happens with her sister Amy.  What starts out as a heart-gripping secondary storyline, ends up brushing aside everything the reader really needs to understand. In both cases the most important parts are left out or merely “told” about on the surface or after the fact.  SO much potential lost in a wide brush that touches only the surface rather than mining the rich depth and feeling of its characters!  Still, the potential is extraordinary as one hopes to learn more in future books.


Ruth Lynn Ritter