David C. Cook
Heartache, division, struggles, and reconciliation form the basis of Alison Strobel’s novel, Reinventing Rachel. After being blindsided by a series of shocking discoveries, Rachel Westing runs away from everything she holds to be true. Miles away from her California home, she begins a new life with her friend Daphne. As Rachel becomes accustomed to her new surroundings, she slowly and gradually pushes her boundaries until her life falls to pieces around her. Unable to cope with the events in her life, or a tragedy that hits close to home, she turns to alcohol. With the help of some friends, she begins the slow and painful journey to sobriety and a return to her faith.
On Rachel’s journey from self-righteousness to humility, she experiences the dramas, joys, and tragedies of life. As she travels through the valleys, her new-found friends come alongside her and show God’s love through their actions. Matthew 5:16 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” This is exactly what happens in the book, and Rachel’s perspective is changed as a result.
Reinventing Rachel stimulates challenging questions about life and faith. It provokes questions about such issues as absolute truth, different religions, and the inevitable “why did God allow this to happen?” Strobel more than adequately responds to these uncertainties, and she handless them with the sensitivity and discretion befitting these topics. Wisdom can be seen within her solid answers.
To make this novel even more outstanding, Strobel creates three-dimensional characters and vivid pictures of reality that one will immediately empathize with. The reader will easily be drawn into the story, and will laugh and cry along with Rachel. The relationships among the other characters are intricate and realistic, as well.
Reinventing Rachel is an amazing and well-written book that will tug at readers’ heartstrings. Targeted toward women between the ages of 16-30, this book will not only be enjoyable, but it will be challenging as well. Strobel’s novel would be a wonderful addition to any woman’s library. – Rachel Vachon, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
God rewards the faithful; Rachel is living proof of that-until the people she loves most let her down. Now she's done with God.
Twenty-six-year-old Rachel Westing has been a faithful Christian her entire life. Then she learns her fiancé is cheating on her and her parents are getting a divorce. Where is God in all this? Wounded, bitter, her faith shattered, Rachel goes cross-country to live with her friend Daphne.
Confident, fun-loving Daphne sets about to help Rachel reinvent herself, and for a while it's exciting. When another tragedy shakes her to the core, what little she has left unravels. Reinventing Rachel gives readers a true-to-life story that draws them in and keeps them biting their nails until the end.