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Potiphar's Wife

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Potiphar’s wife is one of the bad girls in The Bible. She framed and sent Joseph to jail because he rejected her advances. In this retelling of the infamous event, Mrs. Andrews gives Potiphar’s wife a voice. Through Potiphar’s wife’s eyes, the reader gets to know her background and her motivations for framing Joseph. She also has a name that was not mentioned in The Bible. Her name in this novel is Zuleika.

     Zuleika was once the crown princess of Crete. Her husband and mother die in an earthquake and the kingdom is destroyed by the natural disaster. With hopes of rebuilding her homeland, she travels to Egypt and offers herself as a bride for the pharaoh. However, the pharaoh gives her to his best friend, Potiphar. There she meets Potiphar’s right-hand man named Joseph. This unleashes a chain of events that would lead her to commit her horrible act of framing an innocent man.

     Zuleika is a sympathetic but not often likable protagonist. Because she was once a princess and comes from a culture where women ruled when their husbands were absent, she often assumes that Potiphar will let her run the estate when he is away. However, Potiphar makes Joseph ruler in his stead. Zuleika is not happy with being powerless and confined to her rooms as a docile wife. She also wants the power to manage her own household. Therefore, Zuleika and Joseph are wrapped in a power struggle. Zulieka goes through many tragic events. However, she’s made many bad choices. These bad choices really made it hard to like her. She also can be ruthless at times. Still, she suffered through so many hardships that she becomes a pitiful woman by the time she frames Joseph. Thus, Zukeika was an unhappy woman who was trying to find her happiness.

    The supporting characters are more fascinating than Zuleika. My favorite character in this story is Joseph, who is the true hero of this novel. His faith is tested by God, and he remains very faithful to him. With God’s love, he becomes stronger no matter his hardships. Thus, Joseph is a very admirable character. I also like Zuleika’s Hebrew maid, Ahira. Ahira suffered many hardships. However, she finds healing through God’s love and mercy. Potiphar is also an interesting character who is faithful to his best friend, the Pharaoh. Thus, all the supporting characters are very complex and realistic.

     Overall, this novel is about loss, repentance, and forgiveness. The message of this book is that God has a plan for everyone. There are a few drawbacks to this novel. The plot is very simple and because of it seemed drawn out. It could easily have been shorter. The pacing of the story is also uneven. It moves at a slow pace from the beginning to the middle. The last part of the novel seemed very rushed. Nevertheless, Potiphar’s Wife gives readers a deeper look at the infamous villainess. I recommend this novel for fans of The Red Tent, The Dream Weaver’s Bride, and Asenath!
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COVER: Simply beautiful

LOCATION: This Biblical Historical Fiction took me on a journey from the isle of Crete, to Egypt, the land of the Pharaohs. The author's description of Egypt literally took me into the throne room of Pharoah Khyan, and all the intricacies of the desert land, the good and not so good. 

Our protagonist Zulieka, a minoan princess,  goes to Egypt to marry Pharoah. This union, instigated by her father the King of Crete, was supposed to save her people from the tradgedy that brought their country to want, and took the lives of her queen mother and husband the prince. She enters Egypt with a gift for Pharoah and high hopes for her beloved country's future. However, things don't go as planned. Pharaoh refuses the arrangement and instead passes her off to his commander of the army, Potiphar. All hell broke loose after that. 

I was so looking forward to reading my first Mesu Andrews novel, because her name is so esteemed among the christian community. 

I went in expecting to not like the character of Zulieka, considering her actions towards Joseph in biblical accounts. However, the author Mesu Andrews showed Zulieka's motivations behind her deceit. It prooved that no one is either good or bad. Both traits inhabits us all, and it depends on the choices we make that determines the traits that surfaces. Still, my heart couldn't warm up to her, even after finishing the book. 

One of the characters that I loved was Pushpa, who was like a mother to Potiphar. She was humble, full of wisdom and had a heart of gold. We also got to go a little deeper into Joseph's faithfullness to Elohim and his feelings towards his brothers' cruelty. I really wished there was more character development in the story. The moments leading up to Zulieka's treachery felt flat. 

The themes of deception, redemption and forgiveness were thoroughly expressed and I was very content with how things concluded for Zulieka. 
All in all, Potiphar's Wife was a well researched biblical fiction, but it didn't pull at my heart strings. 

Thank you to NetGalley and Waterbrook Press for gifting this copy in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are entirely my own. 

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This book was not at all what I expected based on the biblical story. It seems the author used that as a loose background for a wildly fictitious tale, which offers a sweeping historical read but not what I was looking for. I prefer Bible fiction to stick closer to the text and not take so many liberties. And the sexual content added to the Bible story bothered me too, plus the light mention of abortives. This may present a realistic glimpse at life in ancient Egypt and Crete, but I think it should just be billed as intriguing historical fiction. The characters do seem quite authentic, and I learned some interesting history set in a compelling plot. I recommend it with reservations. I appreciate the redemptive thread woven in. I received a copy from the author. All opinions are my own. #PotipharsWife #NetGalley
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Potiphar's Wife is another captivating Biblical fiction book from award-winning storyteller, Mesu Andrews. Her stories are fascinating, rich with detail that take readers right into the scenes of Scripture and the culture of the people. Readers will love this fictional account of a young princess of Crete, Zuleika. Compelled to wed Pharoah's best friend, Potiphar, in a move to strengthen trade ties with Egypt and save her beloved Crete, her ultimate goal is to do all she can to return to Crete. The characters have depth and reality. Their emotions and strengths resonate well with readers. Compassionate and wise, Pushpa, "mother" to Pharoah and Potiphar, is a favorite character of mine. Zully makes selfish choices, yet the author gives credence to the idea that those choices were understandable and perhaps forgivable. Throughout the story there is a strong thread of faith in the God Who Sees and is at work in difficult situations, extending grace and mercy and changing lives.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher, and a favorable review was not required. The opinions are my own.
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Potiphar's Wife
Captivating story! Well researched and written. Based on the Bible, but with some discretion in adding to the true story.
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Title:    Potiphar's Wife
Author:    Mesu Andrews
Genre:    Christian
Rating:  4.2 out of 5

Before she is Potiphar's wife, Zuleika is a king's daughter on the isle of Crete, where the sisterhood of women rules in the absence of their seafaring husbands. Now that she's come of age, Zuleika knows she will soon be betrothed. Her father believes his robust trade with Egypt will ensure Pharaoh's obligation to marry his daughter.

But Pharaoh refuses and gives her instead to Potiphar, the captain of his bodyguards--a crusty bachelor twice her age, who would rather have a new horse than a Minoan wife.

Abandoned by her father, rejected by Pharaoh, and humiliated by Potiphar's indifference, Zuleika years for affection. But when her obsession with Joseph, the Hebrew chamberlain with the face and body of the gods, goes terribly wrong, she discovers the truth: Only the God of Joseph can heal her wounded heart.

I’ve been looking forward to reading this for so long, and I finally had the time! I’ve loved all of Mesu Andrews’ books I’ve read, and I really enjoyed this one, too, although not quite as much as some of the others. I found Zully really difficult to like, frankly. She was so selfish and self-absorbed and couldn’t see past her own short-sighted ambitions to anyone else. I enjoyed the secondary characters like Joseph quite a bit, and I would have liked to see more from Potiphar’s point-of-view, but Zully annoyed me quite a bit. Still, a solid read that I enjoyed.

Mesu Andrews is an award-winning author. Potiphar’s Wife is her newest novel.

(Galley courtesy of WaterBrook & Multnomah in exchange for an honest review.)
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Mesu Andrews wrote yet another compelling story about biblical characters from the Old Testament. I loved her attention to detail in the Egyptian and Minoan cultures depicted. I enjoyed her portrayal of Joseph and other supporting characters, and I felt real empathy for Potiphar’s wife. 

I’m excited I have another treasure to pass on to friends and family who also enjoy biblical historical fiction. 

I received this ARC from NetGalley. Thank you for the opportunity to read this book early.
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4 1/2 ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Mesu Andrews is one of my all time favorite authors, and this book was such a treat. Mesu does a great job with character development and this book even had me rooting for the bad guys.

Little is known about Potiphar's wife, she is the one who was trying to tempt Joseph to her bed and when he refused she told Potiphar that he had tried to rape her. 

I was in love with the way Mesu wrote Potiphar's character, at first I thought I was going to hate him but he proved me wrong. Even the minor characters in the story held my heart and wouldn't let go. 

The only reason I gave it 4 1/2 instead of 5 stars, was I felt the beginning a little slow for me but it quickly picked up and had me wanting more.

Thank you to #NetGalley for a copy of this book #potipharswife
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This author was new to me. Honestly, I often shy away from historical fiction involving Biblical characters for fear of mixing fiction with fact. However, Mesu Andrew’s’ well-researched work may just change my mind. I believe, I’ll be reading more of her work. 

I had a love/hate relationship with the main character, Zuleika, Potiphar’s wife. I would have great empathy for her in one chapter and great disdain the next. She was complex to say the least. I love a good redemption story though and Elohim didn’t disappoint.
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Is she truly the villain we think she was..?

I've held off writing this review for awhile now. For the simple reason that I've been digesting it, thinking about, pondering it... I knew from the get-go that Potiphar's Wife wouldn't be the easiest read. Face it, who do you know that's actually sympathetic to her? Yeah, me either. We always think of her blip in the Bible from Joseph's perspective. He's the good guy of the story and she's the villain. End of story. But, leave it to Mesu Andrews to take that stereotype and toss it right out the window while staying historically accurate and also true to the Bible. 

From the outset I wasn't sure if I could ever like Zully (Zuleika). As I read her fictional story I found myself sympathetic, frustrated, annoyed, hopeful, and even a touch horrified a time or two. To me, she came across as young and naive, two things that, along with circumstances beyond her control, cause her to repeatedly make bad decisions in the name of following her own self-absorbed dreams. While I couldn't exactly connect with our anti-heroine personally, more than anything I wanted her to finally find the redemption and peace she longed for. 
Right here I will note that because of some of the heavier themes this story is for adults and much older teens.

Mesu Andrews has a God-given knack for writing Biblical fiction in such a vivid way that you come to feel like you are somehow a part of the story and not just reading words printed in black ink on a white page. Potiphar's Wife is definitely a pretty good example of just that as both the Minoan and Egyptian cultures came to life and almost leaped off the page.

If you are up for a little assumption upsetting and love a story that will engage all of your emotions and the senses of your imagination, you should pick up Potiphar's Wife from the very talented Mesu Andrews...It will make you think long after you've finished...

(I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are entirely my own.)
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Potiphar' Wife is an interesting story of how life might have been for Potiphar's Wife and what might have led her to attempting to entice Joseph. It was a very slow read for me partly because of not understanding the Egyptian culture. Potiphar's Wife is a wonderful example of God's forgiveness and redemption even though Zuleika kept making bad choices. I received a complimentary e-book through NetGalley. This is my honest opinion.
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This book was a great fictional enhancement on this popular and controversial story in Genesis! I would recommend for fans of Francine Rivers and Debra White Smith
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For whatever reason, Biblical fiction sometimes takes me a while to get into. I don't know if it's because I know the Biblical accounts, so there's no surprises, or what the reason is, but that's just the way it is for me. I'm always (ok, almost always) glad I read it, but it takes me a while to get into it. This book was an exception to that. 

This story had a way of drawing me in. No matter where I stopped, whether it was in the middle or at the end of a chapter, I got sucked right back in. I was THERE, in Egypt, watching all of this play out. Mesu Andrews, with her rich use of language, is very good at painting word pictures; I could see everything as if I was right there. 

I'm so glad I read this. It gave me a new perspective on Potiphar's wife. Of course, we know this is fictional, and there's no way to truly know how she was, but I appreciate this way of seeing her. It also helped me to view Joseph in a new light, and to understand him better. 

Excellent book!

~as an aside, while reading in 1 Kings today, chapter 10 verse 17 says he "used three minas of gold...", and that got me to thinking about this book again (Zully's first husband was named Minas). I love that the Bible reminds me of books I've read, and vice-versa. 

*I received this book from NetGalley for review. All opinions are my own.*
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I had the privilege of listening to the author at a Women’s Retreat last year and quickly became a fan of her amazing gift of storytelling. She puts an enormous amount of research into her stories, so even though they are fiction, there’s a lot of accurate historical information in them - not to mention the fact that they’re based on historical Biblical accounts. 

I found this book to be VERY intriguing. So far, it’s my favorite book from this author. I couldn’t put it down! There are characters I loved and characters I loathed, and I enjoyed reading about a well-known Old Testament Bible story from a fictional standpoint. 

One thing I will point out is that it’s important when reading this book to remember that the story is about Potiphar’s wife, not Joseph. Unless you remember that, the story may feel somewhat unfinished. However, the storytelling in this novel is phenomenal and I thoroughly enjoyed it!

I’d like to sincerely thank the publisher - Waterbrook & Multnomah - for gifting me an e-copy.
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This was a super intense book.  While Mesu made the reader feel she was in the middle of the setting, with rich and evocative descriptions, there were many scenes that were hard to read.  I wouldn't consider this a light read, yet truth was woven throughout the book.
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Zully looses both her husband and her mother in a devastating earthquake. She is a princess who must safe her country island and the way is for her father the king to bring her to the Pharaoh to be his wife. But the Pharaoh refuses and gives her to his captain, Potiphar.  Mesu Andrews is a gifted writing who draws me into the time and culture of Biblical history. Beautifully written!
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Imagining a biblical woman and transforming what little is known into a captivating character and story is quite an undertaking. In Potiphar’s Wife, Mesu Andrews takes on a woman who is only known for evil - the unsuccessful seduction and following accusation that led to Joseph’s imprisonment - and tells a story that both repels and engages the reader. 

Wed to Potiphar within weeks of her husband’s death, Princess Zuleik of Crete is then abandoned to the mercies - and lack thereof - of the Egyptian noblewomen and Potiphar’s household. But the worst betrayal comes from those Zully trusts, as plots and circumstances spiral beyond her control, leading to her eventual betrayal of Joseph and the aftermath.

Being familiar with the story of Joseph from the book of Genesis, I was both skeptical and intrigued by a story with the wife of Potiphar as heroine - or perhaps, anti-heroine. From the joy, quickly shattered, in Zully’s introduction through the surprising twists and dark turns of this story, through the final redemptive scenes, Mesu Andrews’ storytelling shines. Potiphar’s Wife is a well researched and creatively imagined work of biblical fiction that, as in the Bible itself, does not shy away from the parts of the story that we might rather look away from. 


This review refers to a temporary and uncorrected digital copy that I voluntarily read via NetGalley, courtesy of the publisher. A positive review was not required and all opinions expressed are my own. Note that violence and lack of consent are portrayed on the page, though not in a graphic manner.
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I enjoyed this telling of this bad girl of the Bible. Joseph is one of my favorite stories and Potiphar’s wife is a part of his story and we don’t know much about her other than she lied after trying to seduce Joseph. She was quite the character and we know she wasn’t going to be honorable after what she did to Joseph. I really liked learning about the customs and life in ancient Egypt. I think the author did an excellent job with the story. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All views stated here are my own.
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Mesu Andrews never disappoints with her Biblical fiction. It is always obvious that she has done a lot of historical and Biblical research before ever putting a pen to paper, and she always brings the time period and Biblical characters to life. Her additions to flesh out the story always build on the Bible as a foundation.

Potiphar's Wife, Zuleika, who is only mentioned by name in the Koran not in the Bible, was an interesting character, and is best known for chasing Joseph and having him committed to jail by Potiphar when Joseph would not respond to her advances. But little did she know that this was part of God's plan for Joseph as Joseph's life was a testimony to Yahweh.

Excellent Biblical fiction that I highly recommend for anyone who likes this genre.

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions are mine alone. I was not compensated for this review.
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This is a really good story and I enjoyed it a lot even though I did not really like any of the characters.  Zuleika is really a spoiled brat and her father is too.  It was interesting to get a story about how Joseph ends up in Pharaohs prison.  I do love how the author takes a small mention in the Bible and can make a wonderful story out of that.  This story made me laugh and cry and hope for Zuleika to grow up.  This is inspirational and emotional.  I received a copy of this book from Waterbrook and Multnomah for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
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