Michal: A Novel (The Wives Of King David)

by Jill Eileen Smith

Paperback, 2009



Call number



Revell (2009), Edition: Original, 382 pages


Daughter of King Saul, Michal lives a life of privilege - but one that is haunted by her father's unpredictable moods and competition from her beautiful older sister.

User reviews

LibraryThing member georgiapeach47
I think bibical fiction can be good when the author keeps close to the bible account of what happened. Here the authot gave us a look at both. She miced both the bible and fication to make it an interesting story. We follow Michal from the time she first see David through their marrage and her second marrage. We got to see what David and her both went through. The good and the bad. I found it interesting.… (more)
LibraryThing member judyg54
This is a fiction story about something that truly did take place in history. I could not say it better than the author did at the end of this book: "my biggest prayer is that this fictional retelling will inspire you to read the real story in 1 and 2 Samuel of the Bible. Biblical fiction was not meant to replace but to increase our love for the real story in Scripture." I think this story did that. It made me want to go to the Bible and read the real story. It helped me think more about David and Michal and the thoughts and feelings each of them had to face throughout their marriage; to understand more of the history taking place and the struggles David and his wife might have been going through. I hope and pray Michal did end her life the way this author wrote it. I felt she stayed true to Scripture as she wrote this thoughtful story on the life of Michal and David, spanning many years. I look forward to seeing how she does with one of David's other wives, Abigail, next.… (more)
LibraryThing member palmtreegirl24
Jill Eileen Smith's first book, and first in the series, "Wives of King David," is an absolute treasure! From the very first page I was taken with the characters and plotline of this wonderful story based on the story of David from the Bible. This book not only lets you see the story of Michal from her perspective, but also from David's. Even though David went on to marry many more wives, Michal was his first true love, and I love how this story shows that. Jill Eileen Smith weaves fiction with faith and even adds verses from Psalms that David wrote through the story where appropriate. The characters felt so real and I found myself feeling their hurt, joy, and pain. I saw a lot of Michal in myself and learned a few lessons from her as well. This was an excellent and most enjoyable story that I will reccommend over and over!

As Michal grows up in the palace, she sees the disobedience of her father and also the results that come with that. She also sees David, a shepherd boy who plays the harp for her father. His faith in God calms her and also draws her to him. Although David is meant to marry her sister, Michal schemes a plan so she can marry him and ultimately become queen. Although David and Michal love each other Michal's father comes between their happy marriage. After Michal's father issues a death threat, David must escape and their marriage is never the same. Although many years pass by, Michal does get David back, but she will learn many hard lesson and eventually find true faith in God.

(This story reminded me of another author. If you like Biblical Fiction like this, you will also enjoy Francine Rivers' "Lineage of Grace" Series.)
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LibraryThing member inspiredbyfiction
Jill Eileen Smith's first book in The Wives of King David series has made me a follower. Michal, not only made me a fan of Smith, but made it easy for me to decide what to read next in the Bible. I want to reread the history of King Saul, David, and Michal; therefore, I've started 1 Samuel again. As far as Biblical fiction is concerned, I believe the ultimate goal is turning readers back to God's Word. Smith stayed true to the Biblical account in her novel, while adding both emotional and historical insights.
The book covers a large time span: from when Michal is a young girl with a crush on her daddy's harpist, through their marriage and separation, to David finally becoming king. What I liked most in the narrative was the clearly portrayed interlacing relationships. Michal was Saul's daughter, David's first wife, Jonathan's sister, Paltiel's wife, a woman in David's harem, and she lost most of her family. First, David was a shepherd, Saul's harpist, and Jonathan's friend. Then he was the commander of Saul's army and national war hero. After that he was Saul's enemy and on the run. He lost many he loved as well. Finally he was king of Judah and all of Israel.
The changing relationships and varying emotions within and between the characters was intriguing and raised my awareness to the complexity of these peoples' lives. Michal had two husbands. David had multiple wives. Jonathan was David's friend and Saul's son. David was first given a position of honor by the king, then a death sentence. Smith shows great empathy in her writing, and I believe a major strength of the book is her portrayal of emotion in both the characters and relationships, and in specific situations. She does not explain everything, but as this is a fictionalized account of true events and people, I enjoyed the added questions the narrative raised as to what these people really went through. For example: How did Michal feel when her father ordered David killed or when David was gone for so long and she had to take another husband? What turmoil did she experience when she was separated from her second husband and returned to her first, now only to be one of David's many wives?
(slight SPOILER ALERT)...My favorite part of Smith's retelling was the development of Michal's faith in the end and the demonstration of strength in silent witnessing. David's love for God was evident to Michal and that caused her to look at her own relationship with Yahweh. I actually hope that part really did turn out the way Smith wrote it! I enjoyed Michal and I look forward to reading both Abigal and The Wives of the Patriarchs that Smith has planned next!
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LibraryThing member Jaguar897
I had to end my misery so I didn’t finish this book. I really tried because I won it in a GoodReads Giveaway I felt compelled to continue on, but alas I had to put it down.

My main problem was the writing and the lack of attachment to the characters. I found the writing pretty dry and some of the dialogue was a bit awkward for me. I’ve read other biblical fiction with beautiful prose, which is what I expected with this one especially since it has such a gorgeous cover. However, because of the writing style I never felt much emotion from the characters which lead to my lack of attachment. I especially didn’t care for David. At first he was somewhat likeable, but then he turned into a complete ass IMO, especially when it came to his relationship with Michal. I must admit I’m not familiar with the story of King David and maybe if I was I wouldn’t have picked this one up.
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LibraryThing member HeatherLINC
Enjoyable biblical fiction. I loved how the author brought that period of time to life but all the skipped years was a bit annoying and I found Michal rather manipulative.
LibraryThing member debs4jc
A fictionalized account of the story of Michal, the first wife of King David in the Bible. In this account, she starts out as a young woman/girl with romantic dreams, impulsive and manipulative. She longs for love and security, hates the angry, violent man her father has become, and loves her brother Jonathon but has a grudge against her sister. After an encounter with the good looking David, she manipulates things so that she will be promised to him in marriage instead of her sister. Her life has it's ups and downs, and she faces many hardships - including being cursed with barrenness and David taking other wives. At the end, she manages to accept them as discipline from the Lord and humble herself before Him and David.
This is a romanticized version of the story, in many places I didn't think it could have really happened that way. I had to refer back to the Biblical story several times to see where she got certain events, which I did find support though. She makes Michal a woman with emotions and motivations that the modern day reader can relate too. I felt the ending was kind of contrived though - I understand her wanting a "happy ending" but this of course was all imagined and not something we see in the Bible. A solid read for imagining a Biblical story in a new way.
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LibraryThing member Sandralb
I have read this story in the Scriptures about David and his first wife Michal. Skimming over it and not giving it much thought. I appreciate the way Jill has taken the time to imagine what the back seen to this situation might have been and how Michal might have felt. I have already started on her next book Bathsheba. I would heart ally recommend this book.… (more)
LibraryThing member ReviewsbyMolly
I absolutely LOVED(loved loved loved!) this amazing and powerful book! It is book 1 in Jill Eileen Smith's Wives of King David series and it is one that you do not want to miss out on! Truly. You will truly look at the Biblical characters in a whole new light and feel like you were there, when you put this book down.

I absolutely did not want to put this book down but I had so many other books ahead of it that I had to force my self, really force myself, to put it down and come back to it. I took me 2 weeks to read this book, but had I had the time to do so, I would have had it read in 24 hours. That is how strong and powerful this book is.

It is the story of Michal's life. Smith really did wonderful at researching the Bible and Isreal to create a moving story of one of the women from the Bible. It is truly as it states: an epic love story. I was captured from page one. This compelling story, both true and fiction, pulled me straight into the Biblical era of King Saul, a father full of fury, and David, the man who defeated the giant, Goliath and fell in love with the furied father's youngest daughter, Michal. My heart went out to Michal, and all that she had to endure before she could capture the interest of the man she fell in love with. It was like I was truly there, witnessing all that happened between David and Michal, and I was praying for Michal through the whole story. Smith pulls actual dialogue from the Bible and weaves it into the fictional areas of the book, making this an absolutely unforgettable love story.

This is most definitely a MUST read book. It is worthy of so much more than 5 stars! But I will give it a 5 stars and recommend it for everyone.

*I purchased this book from Amazon.com for my own collection.*
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8.5 inches


0800733207 / 9780800733209
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