The characters and relationships are believable, humanly flawed, spiritually sensitive, and not out of line with what the Bible describes. Mary and Elizabeth are women I would like to know. I wish there had been more explanation of the historical background of Elizabeth's mentoring.
I read this book 25 years ago when I was in high school. It put flesh on the main characters of the Bible. After reading it, I was able to accept that God really does understand what it is like to be human and to face the trials and temptations that we face. It also gave me a much greater appreciation for what it might have been like to be Mary and Joseph and to be entrusted with raising the Son of God. It remains one of my all time favorite Christian fiction books. The sequels are also well worth reading.
An easy to read, inspirational look at a young teenage girl whose mission in life is to serve God. God rewards her virtue by choosing her to be the mother of His own son. Teenage girls and older women will love this tale of what it might have been like to be Mary. Dealing with the scandal to her family and her betrothed, but ultimately trusting God and with her God-fearing husband, raising this boy who would save the nations. It made me want to be Mary. (The sequels are just as good.)