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Up from Dust by Heather Kaufman (Book Review)


The message of this book is gentle like a feather, and at the same time roaring like a fire. Throughout it all, Heather Kaufman's passionate storytelling and powerful prose remains steady.


It can be both a wonderful thing and an unfortunate thing at the same time when a book keeps you up all night reading despite the fact that you should be sleeping. In the case of Up From Dust by Heather Kaufman, I have no regrets! I happily stayed up until well past bed-time just to get to the very last page. Once I got started, I just couldn't put it down!


Up From Dust is a Biblical fiction (ancient historical Christian fiction) novel that reimagines the lives of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus from the Gospels, through the perspective of Kaufman's fictional version of Martha. We see and experience all the bigger moments of their story—Lazarus' resurrection, Mary's anointing of Jesus, etc.—but we also experience smaller moments that give us possible reasons as to why and how these historical figures would've acted and reacted to these situations. The message of this book is gentle like a feather, and at the same time roaring like a fire. Throughout it all, Heather Kaufman's passionate storytelling and powerful prose remains steady.


Without giving away narrative spoilers, Martha's journey is an emotional one. Heartbreaking at times, aching at others, but also resilient and joy-filled. There were so many unexpected connections, little twists and turns, grand reveals... I was totally swept away!


I like to highlight quotes I love in books, and with this story, I had to stop highlighting line by line and instead just drawing big circles around whole paragraphs and pages. There were chills, goosebumps, deep sighs, maybe not-so-slightly muffled squeals and screams... I loved this book, and I am eagerly awaiting more from this author.


I think you will too!


Up From Dust is available NOW via this link. Get your copy today.


Happy Reading!

*I was provided a copy by the publisher. All opinions are my own.


Martha of Bethany is no stranger to adversity. After her mother's untimely death, Martha shoulders the responsibility of raising her siblings--quiet and studious Lazarus, and wild and rambunctious Mary. She finds solace in friendship and the beginnings of first love, but just as Martha begins to imagine a new future, hardship strikes again and her dreams crumble into dust.
Ten years later, Martha's friend pleads for the new teacher, Jesus of Nazareth, to come and heal her husband. When Martha discovers that the carpenter-rabbi is connected to her past, she's not sure she can trust him with her future. But as he continues to perform miracles, the invitation to believe becomes harder to resist, renewing Martha's hardened heart, even as she faces an unknown future.


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