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Overpowered (Bible/ Fairy Tale Novella Review)


As I mentioned in my last post, I really needed to find some good combinations of Bible fairy tales to see if I'm doing this thing right with my Fur Slipper.

These stories couldn't have come to me at a better time. Especially this one.

Wow. Overpowered is amazing. What more can I say? I'll try to tell you what made it so great.


What I liked: 

  • As crazy as this may sound, I've always loved the book of Judges in the Bible. It's full of so many unique stories. It was definitely an interesting time for Israel. I can never bore while reading that book. So, suffice it to say, I loved how this fairy tale felt just like a story out of Judges. I really recognized the stories of Gideon. And a lot of what happens in Judges 9 happened in the background of Overpowered. I loved that.
  • But even though this story was obviously heavily influenced by ancient Israel, I could tell it was clearly set in another world. And I didn't mind that. It allowed room for the author's story and for a made-up creature. 
  • Normally I don't like many made-up animals, but I did like the Pazir quite a lot. I don't like were wolves, but that's almost what they made me think of (without the man-turning aspect). They felt very biblical and fairy tale at once. And fit the story. 
  • I loved so many of the characters! I really loved Willow and all of his wise sayings. But then Proverbs is another favorite book of mine. Willow was perfect for the mood of this story. 
  • I loved Yotam. He seemed a real gentleman. 
  • I didn't find Snow/ Taliyah too feministic or too wimpy. She was perfect. I love when I can love a main character. I also adore her name. It's become cliche for a girl to dress as a boy, but I felt the author did very well with this. It didn't feel thrown out there, but great for the plot. 
  • All of the men Snow stayed with were great, but I really enjoyed reading about Fig and Vine. They were interesting characters. 
  • The villain was perfect. 
  • I also really enjoyed the writing style. It flowed almost as Bible poetry. To me at, least. I loved the word choices. I loved how characters said Thus instead of Yes. And all the other neat cultural words. 
  • I really loved the culture of the world. 
  • I love that God was called the Overpowerer. Unique and true all at once.
  • If you can't tell, I very much enjoyed reading this book.
What I didn't like:
  • Normally the conversation was great. But I remember feeling it was stilted just a few times. But no examples of this stand out to me. It was rare. 
  • The prologue set up the culture behind what was happening in that time with sanctuary cities for people who accidentally kill people. I've always found sanctuary cities fascinating, and while I enjoyed the prologue for that reason, I also found it unnecessary to the story as that bit of information eventually revealed itself anyways. 
  • Also, while the last chapter in the book was OK, I think the ending would have been more satisfying had it ended in the previous chapter. 
  • Many people will probably enjoy the interviews, snippets, and deleted scenes. To me it felt bulky and messy and out of place. I did found the original first chapter interesting but I'd picked up on all of that by reading the novella.

I'll also add that I LOVED the short story at the end of the book, The Man in the Mirror. I was a bit confused at the ending (who was the Captain of the Guard??? and who was really the man in the mirror???). But I found it a very cute and enjoyable read. 

I feel that this author is very talented in combining biblical and fairy tale into intriguing imaginative plots. And so I rate Overpowered ✰✰✰✰✰ 5 Stars. 



Buy On Amazon
From Goodreads:
Taliyah bat Shammai is fleeing a terrible crime. Though she has no hope of shelter, she must keep running—for the Avenger will be coming. Even losing herself in the mist-haunted hills cannot protect her for long. But perhaps other criminals can…

Yotam bin Yerubba’la has left his home, his only guide a cryptic dream. Endangered by a perilous secret, he soon finds himself among men with secrets of their own—in a place where trusting others may be his most serious mistake… or his best defense.

Cypress and his band have been mercenaries for a long time. Criminals all, they don't trust easily and never reveal their hearts. But when a battle goes horribly wrong, each man must decide whether he fights for gold, for fame, or for something yet more rare…

Disguised as a boy, Taliyah finds the outlaw life to be full of more questions than answers. What are those strange tracks around the ruined houses? Why is Yotam so calm in the face of battle? Where are the rest of Cypress' men? And who is the Avenger?

There may not be much time for Taliyah to find the answers, for war is about to ignite in the hills. And they all will burn…

Loosely inspired by the tale of Snow White, this Christian fantasy novella is set in a magical version of ancient Israel. 135 pages (33,000 words) plus 65 pages of bonus features including cut scenes, a bonus short story, author interview, and more. For ages 12 and up.



Kathryn McConaughy is a Christian and has studied biblical languages, linguistics, and ancient history.

Most recently, she has been working on the fifth book in a series of young adult fantasies set in the world of King Arthur.

She is the author of the ancient Near Eastern fairy tale "Guardian of Our Beauty" (in the anthology Five Magic Spindles), and the flash fiction story "A Bride-Price for Hinzuri" (in the May 2017 issue of Spark).

When she’s not writing stories, she enjoys gardening, reading, sword-fighting, and writing papers on obscure aspects of Semitic grammar. Kathryn lives in Maryland with her list of dissertation ideas and her large personal library. You can connect with her at her blog The Language Of Writing



I really hope y'all are able to get your hands on a copy of Overpowered. It's so worth reading. 

Also, since Judges is an amazing book, do you have any favorite stories from it? I love Gideon, Deborah, and the story of the man whose wife was killed so he cut her up and sent her to all the nations (yes, very gruesome, I know). 

And don't forget to check out the rest of the blog tour and enter the GIVEAWAY if you haven't already. 

Comments

  1. Woah, this book sounds awesome! (I also really like the book of Judges as well, especially Gideon's story.) Great review, Keturah!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yay! So glad it intrigues you ;) Gideon's story is amazing . . . one of our family's favorite songs is about Gideon. Thanks, Nicole :)

      Delete
  2. It sounds interesting, though I'm not sure if it's something I would feel comfortable reading, to be honest. I do enjoy the Book of Judges, though! (Okay, so I just enjoy the whole Bible, sue me.) Jepthae has always been a story that stood out to me, especially with the controversy over the ending. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I should add that this book isn't gruesome at all like Judges. It gives the vibe of ancient Israel and unique cultures. But this book is very appropriate and nothing made me cringe. I think it's safe to say that it'd be that way for everyone.

      Delete

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