Babylon's Falling- William G. Collins
Biblical historical fiction is a demanding genre. When I read a book about a Biblical character that is written as a fictionalized story, I either love it or hate it. I want it to be well-written. I want historical accuracy. And, I want as much Biblical accuracy as can possibly be concluded from the amount written about the character in Scripture. I chose this book to review with some hesitancy. And, indeed, even after I chose it, I have put off reading it for quite a while. But, this is the story of Daniel- one of my favorite Bible characters and a most interesting one. From his early life as an Israelite exile in a strange land, to the courage of his three friends in the fiery furnace, to his amazing prophecies, to his later faith in the face of roaring lions, the life of Daniel should be an easy one to make into a great, historical novel.
But, it was not to be. Collins's telling of this great man's life was mediocre at best. It was written in a very dry style- almost a simple telling of events instead of a rich account of relationships and conversations. The characters were dull and dry- certainly not the compelling people I expect from the Bible accounts. I'm not a great historical scholar, but the events and conversations and reactions of characters did not seem accurate for the time period. For example, the roles of men and women, servant and king, conqueror and conquered, seemed really wrong. And, of course, the differences in the story version and the Biblical version were there. I realize that an author wouldn't have enough for a full novel if some information were not added. But, adding wives and significant other relationships to the characters of Daniel and his friends just made the story less believable to me.
I was disappointed in what could have been a really good read. I give this a mediocre three stars. I'd say this was a G rating- appropriate for anyone.
I received a free copy of this book from BookSneeze for review purposes. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.