“I know Antonio understands the significance of this, for salt covenants were permanent, irrevocable covenants going back to the time of Abraham,” Isabel considers in Silvia Babola’s novel, The Salt Covenants.
This three hundred and forty-five-page paperback targets those who enjoy romantic historical fiction. With no profanity, topics of abuse, slavery, and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. This reader wishes there was consistency capitalizing pronouns of God for reverence. The beginning contains reviews, other books written by the author, and a map while the ending has a helpful glossary, epilogue, author’s note with information and sources, and twenty-one discussion questions.
Written in first person, this tale set during the Spanish Inquisition when many Jews fled to the Indies to avoid being tortured for their religion focuses on sixteen-year-old Isabel, who is engaged at the early age of seven-years-old.
When she converts to true Christianity, the Jewess is shamed by her parents as they pretend to follow the Spanish church’s demands. When her sister is accused of Judaizing, which forces the end of Isabel’s betrothal, her parents arrange for her to marry another and sail with Christopher Columbus to the Indies for her protection.
Having a loveless marriage, Isabel tries hard to be a good wife as she helps others in the new community survive through famine, a hurricane, and confrontations with the Tainos, the Indians living in the area.
After tragedies happen, Isabel questions God’s purpose in her life. Still honoring her Jewish upbringings and traditions, she is instructed to remarry her husband’s brother, only to face more issues regarding her faith.
With plenty of action, the writer not only offers historical information about living under Spanish rule in the new land and how the Jews dealt with their beliefs and covenants, but also she mentions medical techniques of bleeding, trepanning the skull, and blood tonics along with physical abuse, slavery, burning at the stake, and bloodshed.
An in-depth, engaging read, the book details the struggles Columbus and others faced establishing a new settlement as well as how God is always present as He watches over us during the good and bad seasons of life.
Having written seven novels, the award-winning author who has two adult children lives in Florida where she teaches women’s Bible studies and loves gardening and playing the guitar.
Thanks to the Book Club Network for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.
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GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.