The writing is concise with few wasted words. The plot moves along well. Though this is not the kind of book that I would usually read, it kept my interest. The author tells the story in the third person from the perspective of Faru, who represents Hagar from the biblical story. This point of view creates an interesting angle that those familiar with the story of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Isaac, and Ishmael from the Bible likely have not considered. No characters are unsympathetic except perhaps a couple of minor characters. Many who have read the Bible miss the fact that Hagar had a measure of belief and that God made promises to her about her son and descendants.
Fictionalized is the key word to remember. The flow of the story and the major events of the story are faithful to the Biblical account. Faru has a love interest outside of Abraham in the story, which the Bible does not present Hagar as having. Faru’s relationship with this man never moves beyond deep friendship though the tension is there. The plot device works to make Faru a more sympathetic character.
The impression of Lady Cwen, who represents Sarah in this story, is often negative, but not unsympathetic. Since the story is from Faru’s perspective, this fact is not surprising in the story, but some familiar with the Bible story may take offense.
The book does not make any profound or unusual theological claims. Faru develops faith in the Existing One, who is compassionate and full of grace, but also just and wrathful toward sin. The author does not present the Gospel, though faith is presented as a requirement to have a relationship with God
The One Who Sees Me is a well-written retelling of the story of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar. If one doesn’t get stuck on the differences between the retelling and the Biblical story, it is enjoyable. However, I highly recommend reading the original rendering in the Bible.
(Full disclosure: I received a review copy from the author in exchange for a review. I was under no obligation to give a positive review.)