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BookMark
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A presentation of latest Christian books to hit the stores

A Light on the Hill (Cities of Refuge #1)

Author: Connilyn Cossette

ISBN-10: 0764219863
ISBN-13: ISBN13: 9780764219863

Publishing Date: February 6, 2018

Availability in London: Creation Bookstore.

Available in: Paperback


Reviews courtesy of: Goodreads

Summary:

by Connilyn Cossette (Goodreads Author) 4.67 · Rating details · 308 Ratings · 154 Reviews After being branded during the battle of Jericho, Moriyah has had no prospects for marriage--until now. She hopes to please the man, but things go horribly wrong and she is forced to flee for her life. Seeking safety at one of the Levitical cities of refuge, she is unprepared for the dangers she faces, and the enemies--and allies--she encounters on her way.

Reader Reviews

Becky Van Daniker rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
Oh my goodness! Where do I even begin?! A Light on the Hill is the first book that I’ve read by Connilyn Cossette and it won’t be my last! I recently found out that this is an indirect continuation of Wings of the Wind (from the Out of Eygpt series) which I have immediately added to my TBR!

If you’re looking for an intense page-turner, then you’ll want to check this one out. It takes place in the Cities of Refuge as found in Joshua. I personally thought this was unique and original because I know next to nothing about the Cities of Refuge. The author’s thorough research shines throughout the novel, bringing history to life.

Moriyah will forever be one of my favorite characters. Actually, I don’t think there was one character found in the book that I didn’t like! Even hateful and vengeful Raviv. My heart broke for him rather than hating him. Oh and Darek. I developed a crush on that man. He is the kind of man who is compassionate and walks away from his peers to help a stranger in need. Then there’s Yuval who is like a brother to Moriyah and will do anything to protect her. They are all very real characters that readers will be able to identify with.

I loved how much growth each character develops throughout the novel. We first see Moriyah as this timid and scared young woman who hides behind her veil and blossom into a confident woman who knows the Lord is on her side.

What I loved most of all was how Connilyn Cossette tied in the perfect balance of mercy and justice of God. The author shows how Jesus, our great High Priest, who took our sin upon Himself and became our eternal sacrifice from the condemnation of sin and death. There are also themes of fully trusting God even when it might mean having your life taken from you.

A Light on the Hill is truly mind-blowing and I cannot wait for the next novel in store! Highly recommended!

Lydia Howe rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 4 out of 5 Stars.
Folks. Miss Connilyn's writing is amazing. Goodness, y'all. Her Biblical fiction has drawn me in from the very first page every single time. When her last trilogy ended I was really sad because I REALLY wanted there to be a fourth book that featured one of the characters from the third book in the trilogy. Therefore, when I saw she had another series going, I jumped at the chance to be one of the earlier reviewers. I decided to go into the book totally blind - not even allowing myself to read the back cover before diving in. (And when you see the blurb floating around on the internet it's hard to resist!)

What I Thought:

I may or may not have squealed and grabbed the arm of the person next to me out of pure joy when I read the first paragraph and realized that ALOTH (A Light on the Hill) featured the exact character I wanted. Moriyah was just a girl of 13 in the last book of Miss Connilyn's, but now she's all grown up and a far cry from the confident person I remember from her youth.

The writing is beautiful - the descriptions whisked me away into the Promise Land and plopped me there with such force I didn't want to leave. I've traveled a lot in life, but this book makes me want to travel even more. Reading about walking through the vineyards was the next best thing to actually doing it, but now that I've read the book, I want to go and experience it for myself. The details of all the Middle Eastern food were so delightful and made me so hungry for it that I made my family stuffed grape leaves, lentil soup, and za'atar bread for supper one night. It was delicious and made Moriyah's world come alive so much more to me.

As far as the storyline itself goes, I enjoyed it. There were twists and turns and things I hadn't expected. (Going into the book blind really helped with that.) Previously I'd read there were some pretty great plot twists in the book, but when I asked a friend of mine who was reading the book, she just kinda shrugged the question off. Therefore, when I got to the major plot twist, I was mind-blown. As in, I went and found people who I knew wouldn't be reading the book and sat down and told them all about it because I had to share it with someone. It was amazing and unexpected, and at first, I couldn't hardly imagine it had actually really happened.

For some reason, I enjoyed the first half of the book a lot more than the second. I'm not sure why that is, except there was a little more romance in the second half, and sometimes that annoys me slightly. (In all books - not just this one.) The first half of the book was a five-star read, which for me is VERY unusual, and the second half mellowed the book down to four stars. I have a feeling though that most people would enjoy the second half just as much as the first.

Now I can't hardly wait for the next book in the series. Miss Connilyn's books always make the Bible feel more alive to me, and this book was no exception. Her research is fantastic and makes me want to do researching of my own. Her details are superb and craft style remarkable.

Conclusion:

Y'all, I have a feeling I should probably end this review before I write an entire book myself. Overall it was a clean book. At the same time though, there are mentions of the various Canaanite cities that were still around during the book of Joshua and the immorality that went on in them, temple prostitutes (never going into detail), and a small amount of violence. There's also a fair amount of time when an unmarried man and woman travel alone together - it's out of necessity and nothing happens, but I do wish that wasn't as common of an element in books like this...

Stay tuned, y'all, for an author interview coming up later on this month!

Kelly Bridgewater rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
A Light on the Hill by Connilyn Cossette is an interesting Biblical fiction story. Even though Biblical fiction is not my chosen choice of genre, I have heard wonderful things about Cossette's writing. While I haven't sampled any of her writing yet, I thoroughly enjoyed my introduction to her writing.

With Biblical fiction, I imagined a story set in a world that I'm unfamiliar with and characters relating to a world with the hope of God deeply ingrained in their every choice.

The writing was clear and concise. I really enjoyed that A Light on the Hill explored the city of refuges mentioned in the Bible. I didn't know anything about this topic from the Bible before Cossette wrote about it. This story is told in first person. Since I haven't read any of her other three books, I don't know if she does this in all of her books or if this is the first time. But it works well for this Biblical story. I saw the story from Moriyah's perspective, and it made the story shine more than usual. Most Biblical fiction authors, in my humble opinion, like to create dry, boring stories, but Cossette created a story rich with memorable characters and an intriguing plot.

Moriyah is an unique character. From the moment she entered the story, I empathized with her plight. What eleven year old could handled that type of branding and be able to tell the tale. Cossette does a great job at showing a strong woman who honors her family and depends on Yahweh even though she has been scared from a young age. Then enters Darek. The mysterious, yet handsome man who sees beyond Moriyah's disfigurement and sees her internal beauty. I admired him as the hero and wanted to see more of him.

The plot flowed like a modern day chase scene. Someone running from the law and trying to blend in with another society. This story moved fast and kept my attention from the beginning. I finished the novel in a little over one day and really enjoyed it. Even I was surprised.

Overall, A Light on the Hill by Connilyn Cossette is an interesting look into the world of Biblical time period and explored deeper than the Bible allows me to know. I enjoyed the characters and spending time in their harrowing chase through the wilderness. I highly recommend this book to fans of Biblical Fiction or fans of high speed chases. It truly captured my imagination. Now I'm anxious to return to her first three books and read those.

Kathleen (Kat) Smith rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
One of my favorite new genres is biblical fiction. It is taking factual events from the Bible, and creating a bit of a backstory to the characters we know about, but not everything about. It might even use a major biblical event as the setting for the novel, such as Connilyn Cossette has done brilliantly in her series, Cities of Refuge. The first novel in the series is A Light on The Hill, and takes the readers back just after the fall of the walls of Jericho.

Back to the lands filled with the idol worship of false gods, where temples were built to commemorate and worship those idol images. Moriyah was a young girl when she was kidnapped and branded on her face as a temple prostitute even though she never was violated in that manner. It would be a brand she would forever face discrimination and rumors about what those who knew of her perceived her to be. It would also make finding a suitable husband for her, almost an impossibility. What man would want to deal with a wife who had to remain covered by a veil whenever she went out in public. Yet even that did nothing to prevent the stares or public shame she had to endure.

When Moriyah learns that her father has found a suitable match for her, she believes God has finally heard her prayer. She believes the young man she meets on the night of a festival is the same man promised to marry her. However she soon learns that he is simply the youngest of the brothers, her father has arranged to marry her. He is not the one. The man she is forced to marry is the oldest brother and the only desire he has for her, is her dowry that her father has promised to any man who will marry her, vineyards beyond riches. She faces her own challenges dealing with not only her potential future husband, but he has vowed she will remain forever veiled so no one will ever look at her and see who she really is.

I received A Light on The Hill by Connilyn Cossette compliments of Bethany House Publishers. This is such a wonderful novel in that during my own Bible reading, I have read about the horror stories of the people who lived behind the walls of Jericho and the things they did they flew in the face of the God of the Bible. We see glimpses of that with Joshua and how he brought down the walls, and of the prostitute Rahab that hid the men of God who would have been killed had they been discovered. It was the same favor that saved the life of not only her but her family as well. This picks up after that has occurred and shows the fall out of the life of those trapped behind those walls that now have to deal with the repercussions of that lifestyle, even if they didn't agree with it. A wonderful discussion guide is included at the conclusion of this novel that makes for a great book club selection. For me, I can't wait to read the remaining novels that will follow this one, and thus the reason for giving this one a well deserved 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion.

V. Palmer rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
Feb 17, 2018 V. Palmer rated it it was amazing · review of another edition

I just...I can't...I can't even BEGIN to tell you how much I absolutely, utterly, completely ADORED A Light on the Hill! Prepare for a gushfest!

A Light on the Hill tells Moriyah's journey after the events of Wings of the Wind, the third book in the Out From Egypt Series. I squealed, shrieked, and did a little dance when I found out Moriyah was going to have her own story! Seriously. No shame. Her story could just not be over, and now, after finally getting the rest of her story, I'm having a hard time accepting it because I want more!

*silently screams*

*regains composure*

Anyways, the twists and turns (no spoilers here!) of this girl-on-the-run story will have the pages flying by you faster than you can drink your coffee. A Light on the Hill is told entirely from Moriyah's perspective, and my heart just wants to hug her. Many a heart will relate to her struggles with being in a prison of her own making, only to find spiritual freedom in what so many consider a physical prison. Your soul will rejoice as Moryiah looks past the mark on her face, finally seeing the woman God sees.

AND THE ROMANCE! OH. MY! *SWOONS* And yes, it was necessary to capitalize all that. The romance was one of the most beautiful, breathtaking, swoony romances that I've ever read! And I know romance, my friends.

One of the unique aspects of Connilyn Cossette's Biblical Fiction stories is that they are not retellings (which I also love!), but they are stories with relatable characters set in Bible days. The author does a lot of research so that her stories are Biblically accurate and true to the culture. In her Author's Note, she shares some of her research and places where she may have had to take artistic license.

Five Stars ~ A stunning start to what I'm sure will be a stunning series! A Light on the Hill is the first book in Connilyn Cossette's new Cities of Refuge Series! Waiting for the next book, Shelter of the Most High, is going to be very hard! *impatient squealing* If you are new to Connilyn Cossette's novels, then you can/should check out my review for Shadow of the Storm, the second book in her Out From Egypt Series. While A Light on the Hill builds on what happened in the third book, Wings of the Wind, it is not necessary to read the Out From Egypt Series first. I think it's more fun if you do, but to each their own... ;-)

Christine Bierma rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
A beautiful story, told brilliantly. Cossette weaves history and fiction together so seamlessly that the reader is afforded the opportunity to just enjoy the story and fall in love with the characters. I find in this book and in her other books that the author has an uncanny ability to reveal how God uses the broken pieces of our past and the frightening circumstances of our present to move us into a future reality that we could not have even imagined without taking on any kind of preachy tone. It's a gift.

I find she trusts her reader enough to allow the reader's imagination to connect the dots of the story and draw their own conclusions because of Cossette's masterful story telling. In a world of preachy CF it is refreshing not to be lectured or given simple pollyanna characters but rather to spend time with characters with real struggles and who have real questions and doubts...and the answers aren't always wrapped up by the end of the story. Life is messy and it is clear the author understands and respects that.

Set in ancient Israel between the time of the fall of Jericho and the distribution of land to all the tribes, Cossette introduces us to a Jewish community of believers who love God and seek to live their lives according to his precepts. There is a love story written throughout the book, however, I would not say this is a romance. This book tells a much bigger story full of action, intrigue, mystery and finally love.

I highly recommend A Light on the Hill as well as Cossette's other books. I am excited to know that this is just book one in a series that is just beginning to unfold.

Alicia Ruggieri rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 4 out of 5 Stars.
I enjoyed Cossette’s Out of Egypt series, and so I joyfully anticipated this new series, set in the time immediately following the wilderness wandering of the Israelites. Cossette has a unique way of weaving together a personal message, Biblical and cultural history, and a great story, all helping to illuminate the Biblical account without compromising it.

Overall, I really enjoyed A Light on the Hill. Those who have read the Out of Egypt series will recognize the main character, Moriyah, from the last book in that series. I truly love how this author carries characters over from other books – Shira even gets a mention in this one! Moriyah and the other characters are well-developed, and the story grows into the kind of adventure which makes it difficult to put the book down. The attraction between the two main characters (no spoilers! ) feels believable, and I came to admire both of them for their true courage and faithfulness to the spirit of the Mosaic Law.

Parents of teens who read A Light on the Hill might want to be aware that there’s somewhat-intense physical affection and emotions described between the hero/heroine later on in the book and might want to discuss this in some way with their teen reader.

Michelle Kidwell rated ‘A Light on the Hill’ 5 out of 5 Stars.
This book will transport us back to the Old Testament days. Seven years prior Moriya was taken captive in Jericho and branded with the mark of the Canaanite God's. Now the Israelites are experiencing a time of speech in their new land but that is not the case for Moriyah she is often judged harshly for that mark, hiding behind her veil most of the time. It seems to that marriage prospects are out of the question until now.

Moriya's Father had found someone to Marry her, and she hopes her love for cooking will impress this man and his son's without a Mother. But things go horribly wrong she is forced to flee and finds many dangers along the way until she arrives at the just established Levitical City of Refuge.

I give A Light on the Hill five out of five stars!

Happy Reading!