Title: The Prince’s Psalm
Author: Eric Shaw Quinn
Publisher: DSP Publications
Length: 480 Pages
Category: Historical, Spiritual
At a Glance: This is a rather special work. I recommend it for the story, for the style, and for the ability of both of those things together to take the reader to another place and time.
Reviewed By: Mike
Blurb: 1 Samuel 18:1 & 3: “And it came to pass… that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.”
David not only slew Goliath, he won the heart of Prince Jonathan, heir to the throne of Israel. They were star-crossed warrior lovers whose passionate affair changed history and gave rise to the nation of Israel, a legacy that has endured for 3,000 years. Their epic love story stands at the center of a religious tradition that shaped the world.
But Jonathan and David were also two men torn between duty and tradition, driven by their undeniably passionate and physical love for one another. Who were they beyond the historical facts given in the Bible? What were they like—as men? This modern-day novel tells the story of Israel’s first king and the man who captured his heart.
Review: The Prince’s Psalm is the story of the love between David and Johnathan from the Bible. It is told in finely detailed story format using bible verses as its brackets and inspiration. There is no question that the love between the two men goes far beyond that of compatriots or brothers. Quinn takes the time to establish David’s true nature. He is no mere shepherd and the youngest of his family. David, here, is a shrewd businessman, a fine steward of his family farm, and an accomplished singer and harp player who desperately wishes to make a difference in the world. But the Bronze Age has rules which must be followed.
While David is fine with being all the things his family and world want him to be, he wants more. First he finds it in the bright, youthful heart of Micah. The two share adventures, friendship, and finally love. When Micah is torn from David to be a man in the king’s army, David is wounded. He is destroyed when he learns Micah has died in battle. David turns inward and withdraws.
More than ever David wants his rural life to change. But, his special nature makes his brothers want to protect him, their protection comes across as treating David like one of the women. It does not go unnoticed that David desires a different kind of love, and his family is at a loss how to help David find his way.
Finally, the Prince of Israel calls for David and his musical talent to help save the king. His first encounters at the palace leave him feeling, once again, less than manly in the eyes of those whom he respects and loves. Playing by day and night to sooth the ailing king, David eventually cures the fear King Saul has that God has abandoned him. From that point on, Johnathan can no longer resist David and his charms. The two become inseparable and they pass a winter together becoming ever closer, ever more joined together, bodies and souls become as one.
We do not see grand sex scenes here; the love the two share is much more deeply felt, so the author gives us glimpses of their joining. That is more than enough because the rich text and expert storytelling do not leave us short changed. In fact, I feel to give us some graphic sex scene would cheapen the story. But the passion, the determination to remain together that David and Johnathan feel is palpable.
When the pair fight at their first parting, we know it is not the end for them. It really is a manifestation of their fear that expressing their love would somehow not be returned by the other due to conventions of the time and past hurts and rejections. Events keep the pair apart again until the fateful day where David, through his own manipulations, faces Goliath. Johnathan, who was not present when David reaches the king’s army, can do little more than watch in horror as his beloved David goes to certain death.
We all know the outcome of the fight, but it is no less thrilling to the reader to see it played out when the storytelling is this good. From the triumph of that day, Johnathan can no longer withhold speaking the words of love David so longs to hear. That the two have been a pair, and possibly lovers, is an open secret, but here they leave no doubt. Mr. Quinn artfully gives us that union, that promise, and the open hearts such a thing requires.
How they survive the machinations of a mercurial king, the limitations of their time, and the passion each has to be the best, drives the remainder of the book. No man is perfect. Not even David, the beloved of God and prince alike. Johnathan must balance his desire for David with the proprieties of being a Prince and heir to the throne of Israel.
This is a rather special work. I recommend it for the story, for the style, and for the ability of both of those things together to take the reader to another place and time and fully immerse you in it. While this is pure fantasy, it is a very plausible telling of the story of David and Johnathan. One that is probably closer to the truth than most people have ever acknowledged before. Available in multiple formats, get the one that suits you best, but buy this book. You will not be sorry.
You can buy The Prince’s Psalm here: