You choose a well-known text (1Corinthians 13) and put an unexpected twist in the familiar words. Tell us why you chose this passage as a central theme for this novel…
To begin with, we Christians think of those verses as a wedding passage. But in fact, the original intent was for everyone to apply them to their lives.
Because we hear them so often, we have stopped listening to the words. But they are extraordinary! At the end of that section, Paul says, “Love never fails.”
I wanted to examine the discrepancy between those words and our lives. Our love does fail, with shocking regularity, at least according to the 1 Corinthians 13 standards.
Thief of Corinth focuses on this discrepancy and asks us to honestly examine our relationships. The story helps us to intentionally invite the healing of God’s own love into the many gaps left by our love.
What do you hope your readers will take away from this book?
I hope they will feel encouraged that God can work through the messes we make with our mistakes, that He can cover the gaps we leave in our relationships. When our love fails, His remains perfect, faithful, and unshakable.
Tell us a little about why this novel is different from what we might expect from a more typical work of biblical fiction.
Increasingly, fans have been asking me for a book they could share with friends who are not practicing Christians. I wrote Thief of Corinth mostly for them. It is a more lighthearted story than you usually find in the genre. Thief of Corinth has more action and adventure than you may expect to find in biblical fiction.
I hope my readers will be able to escape into a world that will make them laugh, cry, cringe, clap, and emerge feeling satisfied and strengthened. The novel still grapples with a few important issues, and of course it takes the reader on an adventure of faith. But that adventure occurs later in the story, giving the reader time to settle into the plot first before coming face to face with God.
Were there any characters from this novel you would like to bring back in upcoming books or is that a big secret?
There is a character named Theo who absolutely won my heart from the first page. Readers will discover a few shocking revelations about Theo’s past in Thief of Corinth. But I want to tell the story of his future, hopefully in the final novel of this series which has been based on minor characters from the Book of Acts.
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Thief of Corinth
First-century Corinth is a city teeming with commerce and charm. It’s also filled with danger and corruption—the perfect setting for Ariadne’s greatest adventure.
After years spent living with her mother and oppressive grandfather in Athens, Ariadne runs away to her father’s home in Corinth, only to discover the perilous secret that destroyed his marriage: though a Greek of high birth, Galenos is the infamous thief who has been robbing the city’s corrupt of their ill-gotten gains.
Desperate to keep him safe, Ariadne risks her good name, her freedom, and the love of the man she adores to become her father’s apprentice. As her unusual athletic ability leads her into dangerous exploits, Ariadne discovers that she secretly revels in playing with fire. But when the wrong person discovers their secret, Ariadne and her father find their future—and very lives—hanging in the balance.
When they befriend a Jewish rabbi named Paul, they realize that his radical message challenges everything they’ve fought to build, yet offers something neither dared hope for.
Be transported back in time by this gripping tale of adventure, bravery, and redemption, and discover why Debbie Macomber says, “No one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”