“Step back in time and experience what it would have been like to be the daughter of the Roman magistrate, curious about the new sect of Christianity. Betrothed to a man she doesn’t love, in love with a man her family would disapprove of, told that the gods she grew up believing in are false, Claudia learns to seek and follow God’s will while coping with her tyrannical father’s plan for her future and his goal of maintaining his “dignitas.” Discover the beginnings of the early Christian church and how they converted the pagans. Experience the life, culture and society of the Ancient Roman Empire. Be there when Vesuvius erupts and buries Pompeii and its inhabitants.” (from http://www.giselleaguiar.com/novel1/)
We met at Women of Faith (2011) in Phoenix, AZ. Originally, I went to meet a blogging friend in real life. My blogging friend introduced me to Giselle. Giselle was the second place winner of the Women of Faith/Westbow book contest. Not to lose an opportunity to let my readers hear a brand new voice on my blog, I asked if she wouldn’t mind doing a guest blog. Fairly soon after that, I received a request from her to review her book.
Before the novel begins, there are maps, cast of characters, historical notes, even a chronology of important historical events that took place during the character’s time. Each chapter begins in Roman time. There’s a definition on Roman time in the back of the book. I probably would have put it in the front of the book. At first, I didn’t know what the Italian words met, but I eventually caught on. Even when I couldn’t understand, I thought that small touch gave a feeling of realism to the novel.
Deo Volente is a beautiful love story akin to Romeo and Juliette. Aguiar has done her research thoroughly. I’m not a history major or a theology student, but as far as I can tell Aguiar didn’t miss a detail. It’s a love story that’s realistic and for one moment we step into the early church and learn what hardships Christians endured. So if Aguiar won second place, I can’t help but wonder about the first place winner. Aguiar’s story is so well-done that it is hard to believe she got second. Minus an obvious spelling error, this story deserves five-stars.
IT’S NOT TOO MUCH TO HOPE FOR—AN END TO SLAVERY IN THE WORLD.
…”In heaven we’ll be equal in God’s kingdom. Here in Roman Imperium, there are still slaves and masters.”
“If it were up to me, I would free all our slaves.” As she said that, Claudia looked up to see Anthony standing next to her smiling.
“Hello, Claudia, you’ve learned quickly. I believe there will come a time when there will be no more slavery in this world.”
“Is that too much to hope for?” she asked him.
“No, Claudia, it’s not. If we work to spread the teachings of Jesus and the apostles, people will start to change the way they live. I’ve seen it already. Many Romans who joined the church gave their slaves their freedom…”
“This passage stood out for me as I reread the novel in preparation for
publication. I wrote it years ago and since then, I’ve become aware of the
gruesome fact that slavery still exists in the world – more now than ever
before. Even in the city where I live – Phoenix, Arizona.
It’s child rape for profit. Girls – average age of 13 – are enticed,
captured, branded and forced into prostitution.
When the pimps are caught, these girls had no where to go until
Streetlight Phoenix came into existance. It’s a safehouse where police can
take these girls and they get help, rehabilitation, education, counseling
and spiritual guidance. Some have children. Some are addicted to drugs
or alcohol. Some are malnourished. All are traumatized. All get help.
Streetlight Phoenix is a non-profit organization and it’s model is being
replicated in cities across the nation. It’s not too much to hope for – help
stop child rape for profit – modern-day slavery.
One Dollar from the sale of each
book, no matter what format, will be
donated to Streetlight Phoenix
For more information visit:
*book given by author to review.