Thursday, January 29, 2015

THE ADVOCATE by Randy Singer {Review & Giveaway}

ISBN: 9781414348605 
About the book: Follow what law and legal representation was like in biblical times with Randy Singer's Christian historical fiction Advocate: He Defied an Empire & Inspired a Faith. 

At the trial of Christ, Theophilus, brilliant young "assessore" raised in the Roman aristocracy, stands behind Pontius Pilate and whispers, "Offer to release Barabbas." The strategy backfires, and Theophilus never forgets the sight of an innocent man unjustly suffering the worst of all possible deaths--Roman crucifixion.

Three decades later, Theophilus has proven himself in the legal ranks of the Roman Empire. He has survived the insane rule of Caligula and has weathered the cruel tyrant's quest to control the woman he loves. He has endured the mindless violence of the gladiator games and the backstabbing intrigue of the treason trials.

Now he must face another evil Caesar, defending the man Paul in Nero's deranged court. Can Theophilus mount a defense that will keep another innocent man from execution? The advocate's first trial altered the course of history. His last will change the fate of an empire.

My thoughts: I typically do not read fiction involving Biblical characters because I personally believe that the Bible reveals what God wants us to know of historical Biblical characters. I realize, too, that history reveals some information about these people that is not actually revealed in the Biblical record. 

When given the opportunity to review Randy Singer's newest novel, The Advocate, I declined with mixed emotions. 1) I thoroughly enjoy his style of writing and the fact that he writes good, clean fiction. 2) I respect Mr. Singer because he is a pastor, an attorney, an educator, and a gifted author. However, when a second opportunity came knocking at my door so I decided I would see just what Mr. Singer with his skills and background as pastor would do with this story of Theophilus.

This is a lengthy book of 470 pages. The story flows beautifully and Mr. Singer's style gives the reader a very enjoyable read. The history of Rome as one of the greatest empires ever is recounted accurately as far as I can determine, and Mr. Singer has done tremendous research to be able to bring Rome at the time of Christ alive to the reader. The unfathomable cruelty of the Caesars. The lust for blood. The corruption. The "religion" of the time and place bereft of Christ. All of this is thoroughly exposed in Mr. Singer's story. The story is not for the weak stomached. 

Theophilus witnessed much in the trial of Christ. He was edu cated at the feet of men of status and great oratorical skills. He himself experienced cruelty at the hands of his peers. So goes the story as presented by Mr. Singer.

Now I still feel as though I can easily forego reading novels about characters in the Bible even though I found The Advocate to be a good read. This was not my most enjoyable book by Mr. Singer, but I did enjoy how he wrote the book, his style, and his attention to historical detail. I won't recommend it and I won't disparage it. 

GIVEAWAY: A copy is reserved by Family Christian for one of Chat With Vera's readers. Enter below - Begins January 29 & ENDS February 10 @ 12:01 a.m. ET. Open to USA addresses only.
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DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from Family Christian in exchange for my review. Opinions expressed are solely my own. I was not compensated for this review.


  1. Thank you for this review and giveaway. When I visited Randy's website, I was amazed to learn that he is an author, a pastor AND a lawyer. Whew! A busy man but one with a lot of experiences to write about!!

  2. When I visited Randy's website I learned he was once the CEO of a cable TV network!


  3. I can totally relate when you say you typically shy away from fiction featuring Biblical characters. My reasons aren't identical to yours but the end result is the same. However, I have read several of Randy Alcorn's books and this one sounds interesting. Not to downplay the imporatnce of Theophilus, but it seems this is a character about whom we know very little so featuring him in a work of fiction is not quite like writing a novel about Paul or Peter. I hope to be able to read this new book. grandaddya [at] comcast [dot] net

  4. I learned he graduated second in his class from William and Mary Law School.

  5. I learned that he is "Jekyll and Hyde" by being a pastor and a lawyer. :)

  6. i learned that He was recently voted by his peers to be one of the top 100 lawyers in Virginia

  7. I learned that about twelve years ago, Randy began pursuing a passion to write. Tapping into his courtroom and ministry experience, Randy now pens legal thrillers designed to entertain readers while confronting them with biblical truths on controversial issues. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you!

  8. I learned from his site that he is both a pastor and a lawyer!

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com


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