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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
When the walls of Jericho came tumbling down, one family survived and was welcomed into the Hebrew faith and community. It was the family of the innkeeper, Rahab, also known as a zonah or a harlot. Rahab and her twin sister, Rohat, were the most beautiful girls in the family. Three other children had already been sold into slavery, but when Rahab’s twin sister and best friend is sold to the temple of the goddess Ashtoreth to help feed her family, Rahab realizes her parents' disregard for her well being. She takes matters into her own hands, settling into a life as a harlot to support herself. Although her family forgets that she is one of them, Rahab never forgets her family and works hard to help support them, saving all the while to create a more satisfying home and income by purchasing her own inn. This is where she first meets the Hebrew Prince Salmon. By helping him escape, she seals her fate when Jericho falls and it is not so different than what the fortune teller once told her.
Carlene Havel and Sharon Faucheux’s novel, The Scarlet Cord, takes the reader back to the days before and after the fall of Jericho. The Hebrews, who recently escaped Egypt, follow God’s course and plan to create their own home. In the process, pagan communities like Jericho fall to the power of God’s will. It is not an easy time to be a woman, especially in Jericho, and the authors develop a plausible plot around the character of Rahab, who is herself a very strong character, a survivor as well as a compassionate person. A fascinating story of the early days of the Hebrews in the Promised Land. Well done!