The Peasant King by Tessa Afshar was simply amazing! Every page captured ancient Persia.
I just love the main characters. Asher was guarded; he had endured a horrible life at the hands of his father, and his vow for revenge ran deep. But for him to cross paths with Jemmah, whose brush with death and darkness didn’t make her bitter, helped him return to the faith his mother instilled in him when he was a child.
I love that the author didn’t shy away from the depth of pain behind Asher and Jemmah’s history, and shall I say present, concerning how he was treated in the palace prison.
The secondary characters also held their own. I could have glimpsed over how integral king Cyrus was to the Judeans. But his storyline was done well, and the conversation that he had with Jared was the stuff Christian stories are made of–or at least should be made of. Perfectly done.
The verse chapter headings were a nice touch as well. What a colorful history lesson for a story that needed to be told!
Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher, for giving me an ARC copy of this book to read and review. All of these thoughts and comments are my own.
Jemmah has always thought of herself as perfectly ordinary . . . until she faces extraordinary circumstances.
When her mother, the Persian king’s famous senior scribe, is kidnapped, Jemmah and her sister must sneak undetected into enemy territory to rescue her. But infiltrating their adversary’s lands proves easier than escaping them. Fleeing through dangerous mountain passes, their survival depends on the skills of a stranger they free from prison: a mysterious prince named Asher.
Asher is not who the world believes he is. Despite his royal blood, he has had to climb his way out of poverty to forge success from nothing. A manufacturer of some of the best weaponry in the East, Asher has only one goal: to destroy his father. But following his escape from prison, Asher is irresistibly drawn to Jemmah, unaware that she guards her own secret.
Jemmah must convince Asher to give up everything he has worked for, all for the sake of a higher purpose he’s not sure he believes in. The fate of the Persian empire—and possibly the Judean people—hang in the balance and in the persuasive power of one ordinary woman.
Bestselling author Tessa Afshar delivers another adventurous novel filled with romance and imagination, reminding readers of what Publishers Weekly calls her “amazing talent for packing action and intrigue into the biblical setting for modern readers.”
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