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About The One Who Sees Me (from Amazon):
Teenage slave girl Faru’s life has been turned upside down when she discovers she’s been traded to a new master, forcing her to leave all she‘s ever known. Upon her arrival, Faru meets a friend, Cailean, who helps her adjust to life in the strange location. Life settles into a new pattern, and romance blossoms between the young friends. But as soon as they plan to get married, another proposal comes about – one that cannot be ignored. Being a slave means not always marrying who you love.
On a daring journey to heal her heart, Faru encounters the Existing One. Will she trust Him and do His bidding even if what He requests is so hard?
Follow Faru’s tale in author Kandi J Wyatt’s retelling of a Biblical story found in the Old Testament book of Genesis, showing that when things don’t make sense, God will guide the way.
About Kandi J. Wyatt (from Amazon):
Kandi J Wyatt is a wife, mother of five, teacher, artist, and author. In her free time, she enjoys writing fantasy stories and Christmas programs, and drawing with graphite and colored pencils. Portraits are her specialty. Kandi also enjoys photography, thanks to her photographer husband who has let her join his journey as both his model and apprentice, and she occasionally serves as his assistant when he needs a “light stand with feet.”
You can connect with Kandi on her blog, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon.
Based on the story of Hagar from Genesis, The One Who Sees Me shakes up the all-too-comfortable perception that perhaps Hagar had done something to deserve her fate.
Faru is a medieval slave girl, subject to the whims of her masters and mistress, which often leave her isolated and confused. Whenever she tries to take control, it backfires to her misery. She’s well-written and easy to sympathize with, but her story is not a happy one.
It rings true. While I may not be a medieval slave girl, I’ve been through my share of misery that I had no control over. I’ve been in the position of trying to get out and being pushed down further than ever before, and the sinking, suffocating feeling that comes with that.
I felt it all again with Faru.
Then, she encounters the Existing One, the One Who Sees and Hears. I wish I could say that point turns her life and story around for the better, but her life doesn’t really improve – she just becomes more accepting of it. (Which, may, in some minds, be an improvement). She reacts to prolonged pain and suffering with patience and faith in the as yet unfulfilled promise of the Existing One.
And that’s when I stopped identifying with Faru, and started identifying with her son, Istik. Like him, I am not comforted by an entity who sees and hears … and does nothing.
If I had been Faru, I’d have been ticked. In fact, reading, I was ticked for her. Then, I realized I wasn’t ticked for her at all; I was ticked for me.
There are people who encourage me to be thankful for the things I’ve been through, to call them good, because look at who I am now. There’s truth in that: I wouldn’t have half the character I possess today if hadn’t been through it. I also wouldn’t struggle with crippling anxiety, depression, or anger that my character often cloaks. I certainly wouldn’t wrestle with the idea of a being who sees and hears and does nothing after reading a story like this. I know there is some good, but the things that happened were bad, and bad things sprung from them.
My faith has come through bloody battles, and every inch of ground over doubt has been hard won. Knowing Jesus has not brought the acceptance and patience and faith of Faru for me; at least, not yet. In terms of that, I may be more like Lady Cwen, the character based on Sarah.
The One Who Sees Me brings up another important matter: people of faith often exercise their faith imperfectly, even to the detriment of others. Yet, God still chooses to meet with them. Whatever I’m wrestling with this story in terms of God’s intervention, it undeniably paints a vision of grace.
Overall, The One Who Sees Me by Kandi J. Wyatt is well-written, creative, and undoubtedly historically accurate. The world and characters are believable and relatable. But there’s more to this story then plot, world, and characters: it’s a story about God, and His dealings with people. And, for that reason, I am certain it will be on my mind for a long time to come.
I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.