Dinah (pronounced Deenah) only got a small chapter in the Bible. In this book her life is expanded, taking you from before her birth to her death.
What I liked:
This was a complicated book for me. I am still waffling over whether I liked it or didn’t like it. What I definitely did like was Ms. Diamant’s ability to put you in the time period she was writing about, so you felt like you were there. I was also impressed by Ms. Diamant’s ability to evoke feelings in me. I cried three or four times during this book, and I’m not a big emotional reader, so that was a big feat. This book makes you feel and I loved that.
What I didn’t like:
This is complicated. Understand that I’m a Christian. And while I didn’t object to the liberties Ms. Diamant took with the story, I just wasn’t sure about the whole rampant paganism in the story. Now, understand that I don’t have any problems with paganism, and of course, there should be some. One of the big events in Jacob and Rachel’s story is that she takes Laban’s household gods. I just wasn’t sure how the paganism portrayed here would have fit in with Jacob’s idea of the one true God. I mean, if he believed enough to carry on the covenant of Abraham, why wouldn’t he ask his family to follow him in his beliefs? Also, the men in this story seemed very lackluster. I know this was a story about women, but. . . I felt the men were ill-treated in this, and I would have liked to have seen more depth in them.
There are some people who are going to love it, and some people who are going to hate it, and I’m not sure where the line is drawn here. If you like historical fiction, though, or literary fiction, then I think you will enjoy this one.