The Triumph Of Deborah



 "… add[s] sparkle to an ancient story. . . illustrate[s] the pervasiveness of sexual politics. . . in a world bereft of even the semblance of political and sexual equality."–Lilith, Summer 2008


“This novel will be devoured by lovers of historical fiction and romance alike.”—Library Journal, February, 2008.


Recently published by Plume/Penguin, it brings to life the riveting tale of one of the most beloved biblical figures: the revered leader, judge and prophetess Deborah.

In ancient Israel, war is looming. Deborah has coerced warrior Barak into launching a strike against the neighboring Canaanites, who threaten their people with destruction. Against all odds he succeeds, returning triumphantly with two daughters of the Canaanite King as his captives. But military victory is only the beginning of the turmoil, as a complex love triangle develops between Barak and the two princesses.

Deborah, recently cast off by her husband, becomes part of the turmoil. Yet she struggles to rebuild her existence on her own terms, while also groping her way toward the greatest triumph of her life: the attainment of peace.

Based on the book of JUDGES, and filled with brilliantly vivid historical detail, the novel pays tribute to Deborah’s feminine strength and independence from which present day women may derive inspiration to reach their potential. The lesson that women today can learn from Deborah is: I can do it. No matter how difficult and limiting the circumstances, I can overcome them.
THE TRIUMPH OF DEBORAH comes in the wake of my two previous very successful biblical novels THE SONG OF HANNAH and THE
GARDEN OF RUTH, which have already had six printings, each.


All three novels are not necessarily just for those with an affinity to the Scripture. They all have intriguing plots, have frequently been referred to as "page turners" and are written in a light style, first and foremost for reading pleasure. They should appeal to a large audience, being the kind of books that people will want to take with them on a vacation, or spend a cozy evening with at home."


For more information, please see my website:

The Triumph of Deborah

"… add[s] sparkle to an ancient story. . . illustrate[s] the pervasiveness of sexual politics. . . in a world bereft of even the semblance of political and sexual equality."


"This novel will be devoured by lovers of historical fiction and romance alike."  Library Journal

"A triumph of Storytelling, this is a tribute to the power and strength of all women." Romantic Times

"Despite millennia of separation, this book illustrates that the archetypal themes of love and war never age." Publishers Weekly

"The story explodes from the pages in a menagerie of fascination . . . a perfect piece for anyone who enjoys romance and history mixed into a compelling plot." Metro Spirit – Augusta‘s Independent Voice

"Etzioni-Halevy does an amazing Job of turning ancient Deborah into a living, breathing woman." Atlanta Jewish Times 

". . . a creative banquet of art and skill, knowledge and passion . . . help to hook the reader from page one . . . a tangled web of deceit and passionate love . . . a hymn to Feminine leadership, which has a good chance of being repeated at the next elections in the US. Readers will not rest until they reach the last word." Lily Azerad-Goldman,

"The Triumph of Deborah offers readers an amazing biblical journey full of romance, suspense, and inspiration." Rebecca Honig Friedman, Jewess

 "A spellbinding narrative revealing loves. . . sexuality, and tribulations. . . This work, like the earlier two, is amazing and mesmerizing." Sybil Kaplan, The Indiana Jewish Post & Opinion.


The Garden of Ruth

"Etzioni-Halevy’s choice to fashion the novel as a bit of a mystery helps provoke the readers’ curiosity . . . it is satisfying to compare the ancient struggles of women to those of today."  Elissa Strauss, Forward

"A beautifully sensitive, lustily feminist romance inspired by the Book of Ruth . . . A brazen rendering of the biblical material breathes fire into a ripping good saga." Kirkus Reviews (starred review)  

"A delightful explicit look at the plight of women in ancient times." The Midwest Book Review

"Ruth leaves reader eagerly waiting for author’s next work… An enthralling, sensual work that carries the reader to biblical times . . ." Atara Beck, Jewish Tribune.

"The mystery is intriguing, and Etzioni-Halevy depicts ancient women chafing at limited choices with verve."  Publishers Weekly

"Excellent choice for a book group . . . I could not wait to reach the next chapter . . . Lots of sex and passion and love . . . The mystery plot . . . is absorbing and intriguing . . . among the messages in this work are those on feminism [and] tolerance . . ."Sybil Kaplan,  The Indiana Jewish Post & Opinion

"[The] Novel offers a dramatic new perspective on an ancient tale." Detroit Jewish News

The Song of Hannah

"A thought provoking new look at an old Bible Story." Harriet P. Gross, The Dallas Morning News

"This dramatic retelling of Samuel’s story reminds the reader that even God’s beloved servants are susceptible to temptation . . ." Booklist  

"I was impressed with the force of its courage and imaginative leaps . . . It has many suggestive passages that are authentic to the times of the Bible and to human nature . . . The book was thought-provoking and enjoyable . . ." Mordechai Ben Dat,  Canadian Jewish News

. . . a well written, compelling novel. . . I wanted to read it at one sitting. . . highly sensual. . . one gets a good idea of the role of women in biblical times and in a patriarchal society. . . a very good choice for a book reading group. There are lots of lively issues to discuss." Sybil Kaplan, The Indiana Jewish Post & Opinion

"Speaks in two women’s voices weaving the whole into one tale of sorrow, revenge and redemption through feminine strength and love." Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle

"The Song of Hannah gets top marks for its sheer delight and will surely sweep you off your feet, keeping you enthralled until the last word." Lily Azerad-Goldman,

"The Song of Hannah does not disappoint. It is engrossing without being preachy, spiritual without being overly religious."  



"Bible stories like you’ve never read before . . . strong and graceful writing that provides a real page-turner, and offers a perfect weekend read. The bonus is some biblical education. When arriving at the last page, you’ll want more." Harriette Ellis, Orange County Jewish Life

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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