[Book Review] An Interesting Twist on the Familiar Story: The Book of V. by Anna Solomon

The Book of V Anna Solomon book review
Click the image to find it on Amazon
By Anna Solomon

Anna Solomon takes inspiration from the familiar biblical story of Esther for her novel. But rather than focusing on the familiar Jewish heroine, Solomon focuses instead on characters based on the banished Persian Queen Vashti. The story shifts between two time periods, 1970s Washington DC and ancient Persia.

The Book of V Anna Solomon book review

Solomon manages to draw some interesting parallels between the ancient tale Jews read during the holiday of Purim and a modernized version of the story. In the tale with which we are familiar, Vashti is painted as a stubborn, angry, disagreeable woman. In short, she is a villain. Solomon paints the Vashti character in a different light. Not villain but victim. Personally, I’ve never appreciated the way Vashti is portrayed in the biblical narrative. But then, I’m not quite sure I agree with this take either.

The modernized version of the story, which overlays the ancient version, comes with its own twists and turns which was very entertaining. I appreciated the added contrast.

This is my first work by Anna Solomon and I am intrigued to read more.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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The Book of V Anna Solomon book review

About Anna Solomon

Anna Solomon is the author of The Book of V., forthcoming on May 5, 2020, Leaving Lucy Pear, and The Little Bride, a two-time winner of the Pushcart Prize, and the curator of @unkempt_real_life on Instagram. Her short fiction and essays have appeared in publications including The New York Times Magazine, The Boston Globe, One Story, Ploughshares, and Slate. Solomon is co-editor with Eleanor Henderson of Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today’s Best Women Writers. Previously, she worked as a radio journalist. Anna was born and raised in Gloucester, Massachusetts and lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and two children.

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The Book of V Anna Solomon book review
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The Book of V Anna Solomon book review

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