By Ann Burton

They have been girls of conviction and braveness, whose tales encourage the devoted to today. Now, Signet launches girls of the Bible, a compelling new sequence for fanatics of old fiction and romance. this is often the tale of Abigail... To settle her brother's playing debt, Abigail of Carmel convinces her boorish lord to marry her. Then exiled through him to the lifetime of a shepherdess, she grows to like David, the warrior son of Jesse, who will come face-to-face along with her husband in a mindless war-and ruin her hopes of peace.

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Sample text

Nor will I travel to the hills to coddle them. They are paid to watch over my flocks, not to whine about marauders and hardships. ’’ One of the female slaves offered him a small, flat bowl of water, in which he washed his hands. The other slave held out a towel. ‘‘That I have used. ’’ He held his hands out to keep them from dripping on his fine garments and eyed us. ‘‘Well? ’’ ‘‘We are grateful to you for seeing us,’’ Amri said politely, free to speak now that we had been addressed. ’’ ‘‘I am.

Perhaps my brother was only now realizing how few sensible friends he had. ’’ ‘‘Let us imagine no one can,’’ I said. ‘‘What then? ’’ He shook his head and looked away from me. New dread poured atop the cold knot in my chest. ‘‘Rivai, what will he do to you if you cannot pay? ’’ ‘‘Maon law gives Nabal leave to take the debt owed from my family from our go’el,’’ he muttered. ’’ We were not subject to Maon law unless we lived or worked in that town. However, Maon’s distractions kept many undesirables away from Carmel, and I suspected that our shofetim would not bar the town’s authorities from pursuing and prosecuting my brother, even from a suspected swindler.

He asked me. ’’ He was weary. I had been awake and working since before dawn, and had done more than he would in a week. I felt so tired my bones ached, and now the thought of eight maneh of gold ground like olive press stones atop my fatigue. For a moment I was tempted to throw the clay at my brother’s head. ’’ I put on one of my father’s woolen work aprons to protect my khiton, dropped a portion of clay on the reed bat covering the top of the wheel, and dipped my hands in the rainwater. Rivai sighed and bent to the wheel.

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