Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Armas, a Cuban-American theologian and host of The Protagonists podcast, urges readers to respect the faith and wisdom of women--especially immigrant and Indigenous women--in her powerful debut. She combines stories from the Bible "that convinced me that God had uniquely called me and empowered me to lead" with stories from her grandmother's life--she survived political upheaval in Cuba, lived in the U.S. during exile from her homeland, and raised a family as a widow--to create a distinctive view of Christian theology that pays close attention to the experiences of the marginalized. The faith Armas champions wrestles with a "story of displacement and belonging" between colonialist readings of Scripture and the marginalized voices of women who are "the heroines of someone else's story." Armas's passion for her community and family history shines throughout, and her biblical exegesis powerfully lifts up lesser known tales--such as the mysterious wise woman of Abel, and Rizpah, one of Saul's concubines, who responds to the death of her sons with silence. Armas makes a forceful argument that society's most downtrodden merit respect and attention. This persuasive testament will appeal to Christians interested in the lesser-known women of the Bible. (Aug.)
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Review by Library Journal Review
Drawing from her popular podcast The Protagonistas, which centers on BIPOC believers among communities of faith, Cuban American theologian Armas now offers a thoughtful examination of Christianity through the lens of women-focused theology. Referencing Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz's liberation theology and Maria Pilar Aquino's intercultural theology, the text is a deep dive into a Latine perspective of the women of the Bible, along with an exploration of ways in which immigrant and Indigenous women practice faith. Armas's nuanced research enriches the reader's experience and broadens the interpretation of biblical stories often only told through Western and European lenses. For the author, the context of abuelita faith is a narrative of women's empowerment and social justice that comes to fruition in examining the biblical histories of Ruth, Naomi, Tamar, and Rizpah. Armas expertly weaves her own abuelita's history of personal faith and resistance into each chapter and intersects it with biblical text, creating an approachable work. VERDICT Armas's gift for storytelling and in-depth research in Latine theology make for an account that's accessible for lay readers as well as religion scholars interested in Christian theology through the lens of Indigenous knowledge systems. For public and academic libraries focused on inclusive, representational theological collection development.--Angela Forret, State Lib. of Iowa, Des Moines
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