Moore (Heart of the Ocean, 2013, etc.) offers a novel about the first woman and her struggles in and out of the Garden of Eden.
When readers first meet Adam and Eve, their lives are seemingly full of pleasant bliss. “I tell myself that I want nothing more than to lie in the cool grass next to Adam,” Eve says, “surrounded by sweet flowers while listening to the melody of the nearby stream.” God (referred to as “Elohim”) has created a world in which Adam and Eve can even “watch a lion sunning himself” without any fear, danger or worry. This all changes with the emergence of Lucifer—a man who tells Eve, “I’ve come to help you obtain what you most desire.” What Eve secretly wants, however, is the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge. She eventually succumbs to this desire, and her decision has momentous effects: after angering Elohim, Adam and Eve must eke out a living without the benefit of Eden. The real world—cold, brutal and filled with death—is much more challenging, though it does allow the couple to “multiply and replenish the Earth.” This brief novel moves quickly through the various stages of the classic biblical tale. Readers familiar with the story may not find much suspense as the plot progresses. However, the eerie figure of Lucifer and his coaxing words offer lively antagonisms. As Adam and Eve fight the elements, and the frightening feeling that Elohim has become indifferent to them, they struggle onward without direct communication with their creator: “[Adam] lay down as he clung to the hope that Elohim was still mindful of them, still watching over them, even in his silence.” Empathetic readers may relate to such doubts, and in doing so, they’ll find the novel to be a worthwhile investigation of age-old ideas.
A close look at Adam and Eve’s inner conflicts that provides insights and parallels to modern-day concerns.