The book is massive in size, double the size of a regular book you find in a book store. Its cover intriguing the title said – In a Bubble of Time and boy what a bubble it was. Yes bubble is an apt tag if you consider the period it covers in the vast expanse of time. One of the greatest events in the known timeline that changed the course of mankind was the birth of Christ. There is a lot of build up in expectations – financial, economical, philosophical and many more. What Susy Matthew attempts to paint is an explanation to you and me in a small concise way is the mood of the people and lets you breath the dry warm pregnant air of Judea, Samaria and the surroundings. This was a story that had to be told and the author does a fantastic job.
The author manages to capture accurately a revolution, the oppression of Jews by invading foreigners, their own upper class elite, rules and restrictions. The air was ringing with rebellion. The time was just right for a leader, an ocean of problems to solve and here comes Messiah. In this engaging story Susy takes us on a journey of two people – Deborah and Joanna. Through these two central characters, she manages to weave out a tale that measures up to the drama of the time with ease so you won’t feel left out.
While Deborah is a wild spirit with a lot of energy and drives the situations in a more charming, positive way, things don’t actually work out for her and how she is thrown from her high perched ambitions, dreams and in to the bedlam paths all her life till she finds peace in her saviour, Joanna has her own disarrayed path from the comfort of a loving prosperous family that envelopes and shields her to finding herself the channel of evil till the saviour rescues her. While you read about the brewing revolution around these two super strong spirits which are broken and reach out for the restoration, many people, situations are engulfed, play each other and culminate in the ultimate spectacle of the universe. The deafening silence, utter confusion and the restoration that happened after the son of Almighty rose up from the dead and brought back the passion of liberation not just from the physical occupiers but also from all things demonic and Deborah and Joanna experience this liberation along with the readers.
While a book can be many things to many people, this one can be a real eye opener for the kind of accuracy it tries to bring in with regards to the almost authentic picturesque it reveals. Whether it is about the status of women, oppressive men, violence, slavery, free thinking men, philosophy, literature, travel modes, routes, climate, agriculture, architecture, political narration and the mood of the season, it is really enlightening for even a history enthusiast like me. I am sure it would blow you over when you realize that this story is not just a tale of two people in love with what they want to be but also a tale of time itself for those two centuries and reflections of what the civilization wants you to witness.
Will Deborah ever find the peace and comfort she is looking for or would Marcus be able to live up to his high expectations, will live be normal again for Joanna, will calmness return to Judea. While time is slipping, things change every moment like the waves that land upon the pristine beach that Deborah loves to watch every day.
In a bubble of time is a fleeting mirror of emotions, people, culture in a conundrum that moves with the light you want to see it in and exploits your emotions to transport you to the time of the day. You are left dry on the road to Samaria in the deep of the night feeling scared to look over your shoulder lest someone pounce on you when suddenly the characters of Marcus and Deborah come to comfort you while Joanna and Mary invite you to quench your parched throat at the sea of Galilee while listening to the ever loving sound of the saviour. Susy has done a commendable job churning out one of the very few christian historic fiction available with good engaging story-line. Pick it up to walk few miles in the land that Christ chose to be and feel the sweet aroma of the harvest.
Verdict: Pick it up!
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