Title: Esther: Royal Beauty (Dangerous Beauty #1)
Author: Angela Hunt
A Bible story brought to life! After she is forcibly taken to the palace of the king, a beautiful young Jewish woman, known to the Persians as Esther, wins a queen’s crown and then must risk everything in order to save her people . . . and bind her husband’s heart…
An ambitious tyrant threatens genocide against the Jews in ancient Persia, so an inexperienced beautiful young queen must take a stand for her people.
When Xerxes, king of Persia, issues a call for beautiful young women, Hadassah, a Jewish orphan living in Susa, is forcibly taken to the palace of the pagan ruler. After months of preparation, the girl known to the Persians as Esther wins the king’s heart and a queen’s crown. But because her situation is uncertain, she keeps her ethnic identity a secret until she learns that an evil and ambitious man has won the king’s permission to exterminate all Jews–young and old, powerful and helpless. Purposely violating an ancient Persian law, she risks her life in order to save her people…and bind her husband’s heart.
Esther marks bestselling author Angela Hunt’s return to biblical fiction. In each novel she explores an example of a Hebrew Old Testament tob woman: a woman whose physical beauty influences those around her–and can change the course of history.
Esther: Royal Beauty ★★★★★
This is a historical fiction novel based on the story of Esther. Living in a time where women are seen more as objects than equals, Hadassah dreams of becoming a royal one day. After both of her parents die, Hadassah is sent to live with her cousin and his wife. Not truly understanding the life of a royal, she wants more than the simple life her cousin provides and is content with.
After getting bored with his current wife, Xerxes sends out a royal decree in the search of a new wife. Men go on the lookout for these women and kidnap them in exchange for money. On the way to freedom with her betrothed, Esther is captured and brought to the king’s eunuchs. When presented to the king’s eunuchs, these women are prepped and pampered to impress the king. However, only one will be chosen and the rest will be sentenced to lives as the king’s concubines. In a place where Jews are viewed as inferior and killed for no reason other than their nationality, Hadassah cannot let anyone in the castle know her secret, so she changes her name to Esther.
Esther is the first presented to the king and chosen as his new Queen. However, she receives all of the king’s attention in the beginning, until her own unhappiness reveals itself after losing her first child. After that, the king seeks the comfort of others.
When a new counselor takes an evil approach to Jews, especially Esther’s cousin, Esther must stand up for what she believes, even if that means risking her life. With the help of the king’s eunuch, Harbonah, Esther finds true friendship and empathy.
Hadassah (“Esther”) – Queen; Beautiful; Courageous
Harbonah – Eunuch; Gentle; Emphathetic
A story of growth, disappointment, ambition, and an exciting account of the Bible, Esther will have readers fall in love with a story of righteousness and maturity.