Review – The Prince And The Prodigal by Jill Eileen Smith

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Patti chose this book from a list I made of books in various Christian categories on Amazon. Neither of us has had any contact with the author or publisher regarding this book. I purchased the book myself and gifted it to Patti in exchange for her honest review.

This is Biblical fiction, which is getting harder to find these days, and published by Revell. According to Amazon it’s 368 pages.

About The Author

I really didn’t find a lot about the author. Her website does have photos of her trip to Israel, though.

Book Description

Joseph is the pampered favorite son of the patriarch Jacob. His older brothers, deeply resentful of his status in the family, take advantage of the chance to get rid of him, selling him to slave traders and deceiving their father about his fate. It seems like their troubles are over. But for Joseph and older brother Judah, they are just beginning.

While Joseph is accused of rape and imprisoned, Judah attempts to flee the memory of his complicity in the betrayal of his younger brother. After decades apart, the brothers will come face-to-face in a stunning role reversal that sees Joseph in a position of great power while Judah begs for mercy. Will forgiveness or vengeance win the day?

Bestselling and award-winning author Jill Eileen Smith brings her considerable research and imaginative skills to bear in this vivid retelling of one of the most popular stories found in Scripture–a story of jealousy, betrayal, and a reconciliation that only God could bring about.

The Prince and the Prodigal

By Smith, Jill Eileen

Patti’s Review of The Prince and the Prodigal

I’ve previously enjoyed reading several of this author’s Biblically-based historical fiction books.  The Biblical account of Joseph is quite dramatic in its own right and I was curious as to what direction the author would take this story.  Combining the stories of both Joseph and Judah worked very well to contrast the different journeys of the brothers and how God worked in each of their lives to reunite them.  As their stories unfold, we see the need to both seek and extend forgiveness; God’s plan of redemption that’s always at work in the lives of those who love Him; and the consequences of following our own plan instead of His.

The author gave me a new perspective of looking at familiar things from the Biblical account, especially the significance of the coat of many colors that Jacob gave to Joseph and why that could have ramped up the tension that existed among the brothers.  I also got a clearer understanding of just how far Judah strayed from his faith and family; and how the Canaanite culture added to the drama between Judah and Tamar. Also, reading about Joseph’s life in both the prison and the palace gave me an expanded view of his daily life in both of those places.

One thing to note:  As we know from the Biblical accounts, the stories of Joseph, Judah, Judah’s sons, and Tamar contain some sensual overtones.  The author handles these scenes with appropriate language and there are not graphic descriptions.  But these are directly addressed in the book and I wanted to let readers know this in case they might be bothered by these scenes. It’s different reading about these incidents as they are taking place in a novel as opposed to reading about them in a chapter in the Bible.

There were two things I wish had been different with this book.  I wish the author had given more historical details about that time that would have given extra depth to the setting of the story.  Also, I was not a fan of the ending of the book and felt somewhat short-changed when I came to the last chapter.  The author tells in the author’s notes why she made that choice, so it’s up to the reader to each decide if they agree with her choice.

I appreciated that the author was faithful to the Biblical accounts and the way she made spiritual applications that could apply to our own lives.  All in all, I enjoyed the book and I’m glad to have read it.

I received a copy of this book from Christian Book Finds.  All opinions are my own.

Where To Find The Prince and the Prodigal

You can purchase this book at the following links:

Amazon ChristianBook Google


About the Reviewer

Patti Stephenson has been avid reader ever since she read her first “Nancy Drew” book many years ago. A retired elementary/middle school teacher, she enjoys doing wildlife/landscape photography with Mike, her husband of 45 years. They love doing photography road trips across America, especially in the National Parks. She also loves doing Bible study with the ladies in her church and blogging about books. You can find her blog at

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