The story of the world’s first couple – Adam and Eve – appears so early in the Bible that anyone attempting to read through God’s word for themselves gets at least that far. Indeed as a child, I never succeeded in reading through the entire Bible, the Old Testament books of history and genealogy were too dry for me to plow through at that age. However, I did succeed in reading through Genesis on a number of occasions as I took up the goal once again. It’s all over in the first four chapters, chapter five lists the genealogy from Noah until Adam and the next stop is the flood.
Over the past year two authors have tackled Eve’s perceptions of her life from first awakening to the fall and beyond. Tosca Lee released Havah: The Story of Eve in October of 2008, and this month Elissa Elliot debut's her first novel, Eve: A Novel of the First Woman. Though very little is said in scripture about the first woman and her offspring, she remains a figure of great allure. Being the mother of all living it’s no surprise that she continues to garner such detailed attention. I certainly couldn’t resist the opportunity to examine the first woman from a new angle by reading Eve.
Elliot’s re-imagination of Eve’s life is told through the eyes of three of her daughters and Eve herself; all in first person excepting the account of one daughter. Eve herself twines the threads of story together as her daughters visit with her on her death bed. Sharing their remembrances, their struggles and differences, their memories. All four women look back in time to the summer when Cain killed Abel, a deeply painful and life changing time for the family. Eve’s narrative moves between that summer, her time in the garden, and their early years as a family. Each voice is distinctive, particularly those of Aya, Eve’s crippled daughter, and Dara, her little girl.