Book Recommendation ~ Reinventing Rachel by Alison Strobel

Book Description:

God let Rachel Westing down. For twenty-six years she’s done everything by the book; she figures He should have her back. But then she learns her fiancé is cheating on her. Her parents are getting a divorce. And her Christian mentor has a pill addiction. Where is God in all this? Nowhere, as far as Rachel can see. Wounded, bitter, and with a shattered faith, she quits her job and goes across the country to live with Daphne—her childhood best friend whose soul Rachel once thought she was meant to save.

Confident, successful, fun-loving Daphne sets about helping Rachel reinvent herself, and for a while it’s exciting. But when another tragedy shakes Rachel to the core, what little bit of self-possession she has left begins to unravel. A true-to-life story that will draw you in and keep you biting your nails until the end.

Narelle’s Thoughts:

I enjoyed reading this book despite not particularly liking the main character. At the start of the story Rachel comes across as shallow and naive. She views the non-church attending people in her life as potential ‘projects’ to convert rather than potential friends. Her world falls apart and her faith is shaken because God hasn’t given her a perfect life.

I struggled to identify with Rachel during the first few chapters because she acted like a spoilt princess and seemed to lack an understanding of how suffering is part of the Christian journey. I nearly put the book down but I was intrigued by the story premise. I’m glad I kept reading.

We journey with Rachel as she turns her back on her childhood faith. She explores a different world in Chicago that is foreign to her previously sheltered life experiences in California. Without her faith to define her decisions, Rachel struggles to build a meaningful new life. Tragedy strikes and Rachel is forced to evaluate the direction of her life. I recommend this book to those interested in reading a story that shows what could happen to young believers who fall away from a childhood faith that hasn’t prepared them to face real world challenges.

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