Reviewed by Deborah Stone for Readers' Favorite
Battlesong by Betty Natelson tells the story of Deborah, a judge of Israel and a prophetess. This well written and scripturally accurate account is taken from the book of Judges. While dramatized, the story maintains the essence of the time and upholds the integrity of the Scriptures. Following God’s instruction, Deborah appoints Barak as the military leader that will gather an army and do battle against the hated and much feared Canaanites. Although they are outnumbered and ill-equipped, Deborah assures Barak that God has promised victory. To prove her own faith in God, Deborah agrees to go to battle with Barak. While preparations are being made to go to war, Mariam and Daniel have been kidnapped by the Canaanites and forced into slavery. After seeing their mother killed during the raid, they both went willingly and trusted God that one day they would be set free.
Betty Natelson’s retelling of this familiar story is fresh, vibrant, and captivating. Although the reader may be familiar with it, Betty Natelson relays the story in such a way that it holds your interest until the very end. This well written and successfully embellished account of Deborah, Barak, and King Sisera brings these historical characters to life. The struggles and the eventual war scenarios are captured to perfection. The dread and fear that the people lived under are felt by the reader. Betty Natelson has taken an age-old story and breathed life into it for new generations to enjoy and learn from.