Delilah by Eleanor De Jong
Maligned as the courtesan who revealed the mighty Samson’s secret for money, Delilah has become synonymous with treachery. But behind the myth is a tale far more tragic! From the moment they met, there was a fire in their relationship, with Samson pitted against Delilah’s family. But Samson soon develops an overwhelming passion for Delilah; entranced by her beauty and passionate nature. Meanwhile the Israelites and the Philistines are in a state of constant conflict, with Samson a seemingly unbeatable warrior. The Philistines are desperate to learn the secret behind Samson’s power and enrol Delilah as a pawn to bring him down. Driven by misplaced anger, Delilah agrees to use her wiles to discover the secret of his strength. But Delilah finds that Samson is far from the ogre that she had assumed. But a sequence of events have been set in motion which both of them are powerless to stop. The consequences of her mistake have gone down in history and this wonderful novel is as alluring and beguiling as Delilah herself. (Goodreads)
After Delilah’s father dies her mother remarries their employer. But he is Philisetine while Delilah’s family is Israelite and there’s no great love between the cultures. Her new stepsister Hemin seems to hate her and everything she represents but Hemin’s brother adores her.
Hemin is about to be married to Samson, young Israelite who people look as their leader. The wedding doesn’t go through and Delilah takes great dislike to Samson when they first meet. When her stepfather offers her as a wife to Samson instead of Hemin, she makes it clear what she thinks of him. But Samson can’t get her out of his mind and then Delilah gets on offer she can’t refuse.
I’m surprised how much I liked this. I’ve heard of Samson and Delilah before but didn’t know anything about them so I didn’t know what to suspect.
Delilah was strong, willful and brave and I liked her from the start. She grows in a Philistine family learning their culture and ways and has never really felt the need to learn the ways of her people. When she meets Samson she thinks he’s brutish barbarian but there is spark between them from the start. I didn’t always agreed what she did or how she did but I understand her reasons.
I liked Samson and how he believed in what he was doing. He was definitely no barbarian but not an open or easy man either. He was said to be violent man but he also cared for his mother and gave great balance. But I did wonder that Samson being no idiot how easily and completely he fell for Delilah so quickly. He suspected everyone and everything of betrayal but never even thought she could betray him?
Delilah’s brother Ekron is first rather weak and gives Delilah puppy eyes and I wasn’t prepared for the change for what he became. Not sure if everything he did to her at the end was really necessary but it showed how far they had became while choosing sides.
I liked the book and it was great debut for the author. While the characters are from the bible it’s not very religious and I felt like I was reading just historical book.
Published: Avon (2011)