Posted August 9, 2023 by Carole in Reviews / 4 Comments

I received this book for free from the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

JezebelJezebel by Megan Barnard
Narrator: Perdita Weeks
Published by Penguin, Penguin Random House Audio on July 25, 2023
Genres: Fiction / Historical / Ancient
Length: 8 hours 40 minutes
Pages: 304
Format: ARC, Audiobook
Source: Publisher
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Jezebel. You’ve heard the name. But you’ve never heard her story.

"Historical fiction at its finest," (Louisa Morgan) this propulsive novel is a stunning reimagining of the story of a fierce princess from Tyre and her infamous legacy

Jezebel was born into the world howling. She intends to leave it the same way.

When Jezebel learns she can't be a king like her father simply because she’s a girl, she vows never to become someone’s decorative wife, nameless and lost to history. At fifteen she’s married off, despite her protests, to Prince Ahab of Israel. There, she does what she must to gain power and remake the dry and distant kingdom in the image of her beloved, prosperous seaside homeland of Tyre, beginning by building temples to the gods she grew up worshipping. As her initiatives usher in an era of prosperity for Israel, her new subjects love her, and her name rings through the land.

Then Elijah, the prophet of Yahweh and her former lover, begins to speak out against her. Bitter at having been abandoned by Jezebel, he lashes out, calling her a slut. Harlot. Witch. And the people, revering their prophet’s message, turn on her.

As ancient powers and faiths are pitted against each other, bloodshed descends on Israel and Jezebel faces the fall of her legacy. Determined despite the odds to make Israel a great nation, she must decide how far she's willing to go to protect her family, her throne—her name. A stunning revision of a notorious queen’s story, Jezebel is a thrilling lyrical debut about a fierce woman who refuses to be forgotten.

This was such a well-done novel! I am the first to admit that I knew next to nothing about the historical figure of Jezebel so I was very interested in picking up this historical fiction story. Sure, I have heard the name thrown around in a derogatory manner during my lifetime but I knew nothing about the woman behind the name. I was quickly pulled into this story of a strong and resilient woman.

Jezebel could be tough, even brutal, at times but I do feel that she did what she thought would strengthen her country. She doesn’t always do what is right but it is apparent just how much she cares. The story was bleak at times and exciting at others. She was very concerned with leaving a legacy so that her name would be remembered. This story takes us from Jezebel’s childhood through middle age and I enjoyed watching her grow and change over the course of the story.

I listened to the audiobook and thought that Perdita Weeks did a phenomenal job with this story. I believe that this was the first time that I have had the chance to listen to this narrator’s work and I must say that she was the perfect choice to bring Jezebel’s story to life. I found her voice to be very pleasant and wanted to listen to this story for hours at a time. I am certain that her performance added to my overall enjoyment.

I would not hesitate to recommend this book to others. I found this to be a very entertaining story that kept me glued to my headphones. The writing was spectacular so I could easily see myself picking up more of this author’s work in the future.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Penguin Books and Penguin Random House Audio.

4 responses to “Jezebel

  1. Oh this sounds interesting and it’s definitely not a time period I see very often. Jezebel sounds like an amazing character and this sounds like a tough but worth it read.

  2. Is this supposed to be the Jezebel from the Bible? She’s a pretty nasty woman from that account. Looks like they did some shuffling with the story. Glad to hear you enjoyed it.