About Women Of The Passion

Customer Reviews from Amazon.com for Women of the Passion, a novel

The Women of the Passion, a novel unfolds like a mystery. I didn’t read this for religious enlightenment. I’m a nice Jewish girl who believes Jesus was a remarkable man but was not the son of God. Yet I couldn’t help but be beguiled by Lynch’s powerful retelling of the crucifixion and its aftermath.

While there is a strong sense of historical detail, Lynch wisely uses the present tense and provides evocative descriptions of people and places to draw us in. For example, she delineates
a house where Mary Magdalene is staying: “The heavy rains have cleansed the close Jerusalem air, and the fragrant scent of ripe fruit from the orchard assaults her.”Also by allowing her characters to have foibles as well as strengths, they emerge as flesh and blood beings we can relate to rather than the venerated saints many of them would become. In addition, universally appealing novelistic components, such as love, sacrifice, and the quest for power, are also much in evidence.

In other words, this is a book that should appeal to everyone, regardless of their religious beliefs and traditions.

Screenstar, January 2011


This novel is a page turner even though we know the outcome from biblical history. It is a reminder that women were present, as were men, at the Passion of the Lord. Joan Lynch tells the story of the strong and compassionate women following Jesus with enriching detail. I felt that I was there as the women talked, walked and worked with Jesus. Throughout the book I experienced the emotions of the day to day living and the role of women after the Crucifixion.
This is a novel I could not put down.

Patricia L. Massey, January 2011


Women of the Passion arrived in the afternoon and I began it immediately. I just couldn’t put it down and finished it by bedtime. History could very well have happened just as Joan Lynch wrote. It has given me much to ponder and question. The timing is perfect for me as I am in a summer book group. Our book is Pope Benedict XVI “Jesus of Nazareth, Holy Week: From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection.” This is not an easy read but I found that Women of the Passion is a true companion book. Both books raise different aspects of the same issues: the Temple, the political climate between the Romans and the Jews. Jesus’ spoken words, and his references to scripture. It definitely makes you reach for the bible to read more. I’m taking my time rereading every page to savor the beliefs, actions and emotions of the strong characters in this book. It’s on the top of my gift list to share with friends.

Jo Jo, August 2011


The novel, Women of the Passion by Joan D. Lynch, tells the story of the women who walked with Jesus from his death to the resurrection-his mother Mary, Mary Magdalene¸ Susanna and Joanna as well as others. The reader can feel him or herself right in the action while gathering insight into the women’s thoughts and feelings. The author has made good use of the present tense in order to achieve this. The novel moves along well and is historically based. It reads briskly but sometimes assumes the reader is completely knowledgeable about the facts of the early church and often lacks full description and place. Despite this, the book is a very enjoyable and enlightening read, a book sure to make the biblical women more than one dimensional.

Bernadette Stankard (Kansas), February 2011


“Women of the Passion” is a powerful depiction of the women, and men, who mourned their crucified Master, were stunned by His Resurrection and encountered the risen Jesus. Mary Magdalene, who first sees her risen Lord, is an especially strong character. The fictional Miriam, young and pregnant, is an example of a woman whose faith overcomes her fears. St. Peter, full of shame for his denial of Jesus on the eve of the crucifixion and feeling unworthy to lead the apostles, is a very believable character. Saul of Tarsus, who will become St. Paul, is presented as a zealous man who feels that it is his duty to persecute the disciples until his life is changed forever on the road to Damascus. Lynch’s use of the present tense in her narrative adds to the
immediacy of the amazing events taking place.

Eleanor Erskine, retired librarian January 2011

Well written novel with good pacing and developing excitement mixed with our new appreciation of Mary, the Mother, Mary Magdalene, Joanna and Chuza, Herod’s stewart. A sweet subplot with a young couple, Miriam and Cleopas, newly married and in love with life gives warmth to the narrative. The ever present Roman Menace gives drama to these characters’ lives.

Alex, December 2010

Wow! I have now read WOMEN OF THE PASSION twice (once for the story, and once for details) and absolutely love the dimensions the author has sculpted for these biblical characters. These are stories/names/characters I have known forever, yet I found history and facts there that I was not aware of. Joan Lynch has meshed fact and poetic license so cleanly that I had to pause at times to figure which was which. And I like that she highlighted her characters’ fears and foibles as well as their courage in that wildly explosive chapter of history.

Lynch also made good use of ‘cross cutting’ toward the end of the book to build the suspense that must surely have existed during those two months following Jesus’ death and resurrection.

I felt that this material lent itself to a screenplay, but I’m glad the author chose straight text. Who knows…someone may recognize the visual potential that is certainly in this novel and want to adapt it to the screen.

Congratulations on a moving read!

Novafilm (Philadelphia, PA, USA), February 2011

Women of the Passion, a novel is a beautifully written, sensitive, passionate telling of a well known story which emphasizes the strength, love and compassion of the women-Mary, Mary Magdalene, Joanna and Chuza- who experienced the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus. Reading this novel in the present tense brought the characters to life and I was able to feel their joy, their sorrow and their passion.

Margery Fallon, January 2011

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was exciting and insightful to read about the lives of the women who followed Jesus. I hadn’t realized their importance in the founding of the church. I also enjoyed the conflicts and loyalties between the personalities. It made the characters seem very real and familiar. I would definitely recommend this book, not only for Christians but for anyone who would like to better understand the birth of the Christian religion.

Edna Driscoll, January 2011

Joan Lynch has brought the characters of “Women of the Passion” into a new light! These women, we all have read about, are full of fervor for the Word to be spread throughout the land during a time of critical scrutiny and persecution. It holds the reader in suspense and is a page turner! You don’t have to be religious to read this; it is a good lesson on history and the power of women in our past!

Suzanne (Walsh) Guido, April 2011

Women of the Passion, a novel is a requisite companion on our journey through the Lenten season. This first novel by Joan D. Lynch tells a familiar story from the perspective of the women who played a most significant role in the early formation of the Christian church. How very difficult it must have been for them in recognizing what was happening and trying to find their way among men to express their belief. I love that the author casts Mary as a midwife. What a fitting and significant portrayal of the mother of us all! A natural role of the woman who intervenes on our behalf from the moment of conception and who guides into and throughout the world! Brilliant! I found myself wanting more in character development, in particular, Mary Magdalene (perhaps a sequel?). I also learned something about Pentecost, never knowing it existed prior to the visit of the Holy Spirit. This novel helps one better appreciate St. Paul. While it is commonly known that he persecuted Christians and later converted to the faith, here we see just how evil he was, making his conversion so much more significant. Ms. Lynch has the ability to place the reader inside the story, in a supporting role, if you will, and this reader is certainly looking forward to another journey!

Karen F. Farrell, March 2011

This novel by Joan Lynch relates the familiar story of events…All Christians know this story, but the author’s unique telling uncovers a hidden treasure. That treasure is revealed during the journey of Faith made by Peter, Mary Magdalene, Paul and all of those New Testament characters affected by the Pentecost. The author’s inspired faith becomes her gift to the reader. You will marvel at the presence of the Holy Spirit, giving grace to her pen; and end the last page realizing their joint effort has enriched the gift of Faith in your life.

Margaret N, February 2011

Well, I got to page 17 and had to stop for a while. I was crying too hard to see. Calvary has ever been for me so immediate and overwhelming.

This novel of the Passion is told through the eyes of the disciples, especially the women who followed Our Lord, and it shows them reacting in all their human frailty to truly extraordinary events.

I don’t know what to say: I’m pretty blown away, & need to stop and reflect before continuing. I am quite the avid reader, and I very rarely have this strong an emotional reaction…very high praise to the author of this account!

Yes: get a copy. Give a copy. Share a copy.

Cynthia L. Fisher, January 2011

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