The Best People In The World!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

People of the Book

Farah Mohammed Al Otaibi lay bruised and bloody on the floor beside her bed. The image of her soft mattress floated in and out of her consciousness, as did the rank smells of urine and feces and blood. But she had no strength to drag herself from her current position. Even the slightest movement brought stabs of excruciating pain, so she tried to remember to keep her breathing shallow and her body still.

How long had she been here? Hours, certainly. Days? She couldn't be sure. Her father and brother had covered the windows with heavy, dark cloth, blocking out any light that might help her keep track of time.

Hunger wasn't an issue, for who could think of food when the pain was so intense? But thirst? Oh, how she longed for just a sip of cool water! Surely her mother would sneak in son and bring her some. She had always taken care of her before -

Before ...

The memory was back, though she tried desperately to block it out. Impossible. She could never forget that moment in time, for it was the dividing line between the before and after of her life. Before the tragedy that led to her brother's discovery. Before her father had flown into a rage over what he considered his daughter's betrayal and treachery. Before they had threatened to kill her in order to preserve teh family's honor. Before he mother had tried to intervene.

Hot tears pricked the back of Farah's eyelids, as the vision of her mother's face before - and after - swam in front of her eyes. The pain in her heart at that moment far exceeded anything she felt in her body. Then suddenly, inexplicably, the meaning of her name - Farah, joy and cheerfulness - burst into her consciousness. Despite her agony and sorrow, Farah was unable to hold back the brief burst of laughter that exploded from her aching chest. How absurd that her parents had given her a name that implied happiness, and yet she now wondered if she had ever truly understood or experienced an of it in her not quite nineteen years of life.

But then she had met Isa, and everything - both good and bad - had changed forever.

In the novel, People of the Book by Kathi Macias, we get the opportunity to view first hand through the eyes of Farah, what it's like living in Saudi Arabia and living as a practicing Muslim. However when Farah's life is interrupted by a vision from Isa, Jesus Christ, she feels conflicted in whether what she has believed all her life has been a lie, and with that knowledge, changing her faith is not that simple. It would mean certain death if her family found out. Will she be willing to take that risk?

I received this novel compliments of Kathi Macias for my honest review and once again she doesn't disappoint her readers. This one was a 5 out of 5 star in my personal opinion and gave me insight into just how much we take our religious freedoms here in the United States for granted. No where can someone select another religion and feel free to practice their beliefs and remain safe. Whereas, in places like Saudi Arabia, you may in fact lose your life for choosing something other than Islam as your religion.

For more information on this book, the author and where you can pick up a copy of this book, please click on the links below:

You can also find her on Facebook by clicking here.


  1. This book has the same title as another book which I'm thinking of... I think it's written by Geraldine Brooks and that's why I initially clicked on this post. It sounds like a great story and you've written a wonderful review!

    Megan @ Storybook Love Affair

  2. Megan is right. There is another book by this title, though it's been out longer and is quite different. Thanks for the great review!


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