From the servant halls of Cleopatra’s Egyptian palace to the courts of Herod the Great, Lydia will serve two queens to see prophecy fulfilled.
Alexandria, Egypt 39 BC
Orphaned at birth, Lydia was raised as a servant in Cleopatra's palace, working hard to please while keeping everyone at arm's length. She's been rejected and left with a broken heart too many times in her short life.
But then her dying mentor entrusts her with secret writings of the prophet Daniel and charges her to deliver this vital information to those watching for the promised King of Israel. Lydia must leave the nearest thing she’s had to family and flee to Jerusalem. Once in the Holy City, she attaches herself to the newly appointed king, Herod the Great, as handmaid to Queen Mariamme.
Trapped among the scheming women of Herod’s political family—his sister, his wife, and their mothers—and forced to serve in the palace to protect her treasure, Lydia must deliver the scrolls before dark forces warring against the truth destroy all hope of the coming Messiah.
The Queen's Handmaid is the latest release from author Tracy L. Higley. In this sweeping historical novel, she takes readers into the Biblical time of King Herod, the Galilean governor bent on increasing his power through acquiring land and kingdoms. He uses his influence with Cleopatra and Mark Anthony to make his gains. Lydia is a young handmaiden who works for Cleopatra. This is when Lydia first encounters Herod who convinces Cleopatra to hand Lydia over to him to work for his betrothed. But Lydia possesses a secret. She must locate a man in Jerusalem at the temple courts and hand over to him the secret scrolls she has been entrusted with. She must guard and keep her task a secret before she is murdered.
What follows is a complex plot filled with numerous fascinating characters, life and death dangerous scenarios, and a gripping good story to the very satisfying end. Murder, secret trysts and alliances, spies, betrayal, love, and loyalty! This novel can boast all of that and more. Good writing and plenty of historical detail makes the story truly come alive. Very highly recommended.